TAMPA, Fla. (WIVB) – The Tampa Bay Lightning had no trouble scoring on the Sabres in Sunday’s contest. Two goals in the first two periods and another in the third allowed the defending Stanley Cup champions to take one from the Sabres in dominant fashion, 5-0.
Members of the team said after the game that they didn’t play the way they had been the past few times, and that made a difference.
“This was the first game in a very very long time where we didn’t come to our identity that we want to be as a group and that is work hard, make the other team make mistakes, so I think that was uncharacteristic of us to not be like that today,” forward Rasmus Asplund said.
“We weren’t sharp,” head coach Don Granato said. “The execution wasn’t there. Whatever that was, we haven’t practiced much recently, we were fatigue, whatever it is, but we’ll skate tomorrow and I know our guys will be better the next time out after going through what they went through tonight.”
Corey Perry and Ondrej Palat scored in the first period, and the Lightning took a 2-0 lead into first intermission. Brandon Hagel and Nikita Kucherov scored in the second, and that gave Tampa a 4-0 lead after two. Ross Colton netted the fifth and final goal of the game.
The Sabres fall to 26-37-11 on the season and will face the Toronto Maple Leafs next on Tuesday night at 7 p.m.