Andrei Vasilevskiy

Best of NHL: Lightning use shutout to snap modest 2-game skid

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Best of NHL: Lightning use shutout to snap modest 2-game skid

BUFFALO, N.Y. -- Andrei Vasilevskiy made 34 saves in his second shutout this season, and the Tampa Bay Lightning ended a two-game skid with a 2-0 victory over the Buffalo Sabres on Tuesday night.

Defenseman Dan Girardi and rookie Mikhail Sergachev had goals for the Lightning in the third of a four-game trip. Tampa Bay is off to the best start in franchise history (17-5-2) but had lost consecutive games for the first time this season.

Vasilevskiy leads the NHL with 16 wins and has six career shutouts in 101 starts.

Robin Lehner stopped 24 shots for the Sabres, who were held scoreless for the second straight game and have lost nine of 10.

Sergachev scored his sixth goal of the year on a power play to give the Lightning a 1-0 lead late in the first period. Tampa Bay has scored a power-play goal in nine of its last 10 games and leads the NHL in conversion rate.

Girardi got his first goal of the season midway through the second period. Girardi's slap shot from the top of the right circle deflected in off Buffalo's Marco Scandella (see full recap).

Blue Jackets notch SO win over Hurricanes
COLUMBUS, Ohio -- Cam Atkinson and Artemi Panarin scored in the shootout to give the Columbus Blue Jackets a 3-2 win over the Carolina Hurricanes on Tuesday night.

Zach Werenski had a goal and an assist, and Josh Anderson also scored for the Blue Jackets, who won their first game after their season-best six-game winning streak ended. Columbus has won five in a row at home.

Joonas Korpisalo, making a rare start in place of Sergei Bobrovsky, made 29 saves in regulation and overtime and stopped two more shots in the shootout for the Blue Jackets. Bobrovsky leads the league in save percentage and goals-against average and got his first night off in three weeks as Korpisalo made his fifth start.

Noah Hanifan scored in the first period for Carolina, and Brock McGinn tied it midway through the third. Scott Darling had 36 saves for the Hurricanes, who had gone 6-3-1 in their past 10 games.

Columbus outshot Carolina 5-2 in overtime (see full recap).

Kopitar, Quick lead Kings to victory
DETROIT -- Dustin Brown and Anze Kopitar scored 2:10 apart late in the second period to put the Los Angeles Kings ahead and they went on to beat the Detroit Red Wings 4-1 on Tuesday night.

Jonathan Quick made 23 saves, including some spectacular stops in the second period that kept the Kings within a goal.

His teammates took advantage.

After Brown and Kopitar puts the Kings ahead, they pulled away in the third. Adrian Kempe scored early in the period and Kopitar's second goal of the game gave Los Angeles a three-goal cushion with 7-plus minutes left.

The Red Wings started strong, but couldn't recover when they failed to get another shot past Quick.

Detroit's Mike Green broke a scoreless tie late in the second period and Jimmy Howard finished with 32 saves.

The Kings have won two straight after losing three in a row and seven of eight.

The Red Wings have lost five straight, one shy of their season-long skid from last month, after winning six of the previous nine games (see full recap).

Best of NHL: Andrei Vasilevskiy wins 9th straight as Lightning top Panthers

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Best of NHL: Andrei Vasilevskiy wins 9th straight as Lightning top Panthers

SUNRISE, Fla. -- Andrei Vasilevskiy won his ninth straight start and Steven Stamkos scored twice to lift the Tampa Bay Lightning over the Florida Panthers 8-5 on Monday night.

Vasilevskiy made 18 saves and shares the longest win streak by a goalie in franchise history with John Grahame, who won nine in a row from Nov. 14 to Dec. 10, 2005.

Ondrej Palat scored the go-ahead goal and had an assist. Nikita Kucherov added his NHL-leading 13th goal and an assist, while Brayden Point and Yanni Gourde each had a goal and an assist for Tampa Bay. Vladislav Namestnikov and Anton Stralman also scored.

Aleksander Barkov had a goal and three assists to lead the Panthers. Evgeni Dadanov, Jamie McGinn, Jonathan Huberdeau and Aaron Ekblad also scored for Florida.

James Reimer allowed five goals on 19 shots before being replaced by Antti Niemi at 10:22 of the second. Niemi stopped 16 shots (see full recap).

Blue Jackets top Bruins in shootout
COLUMBUS, Ohio -- Artemi Panarin and Oliver Bjorkstrand scored in the shootout, and the Columbus Blue Jackets beat the Boston Bruins 4-3 on Monday night after squandering a two-goal lead in the third period.

Columbus has won eight of its first 12 games, a franchise record for October.

Blue Jackets goalie Sergei Bobrovsky had an assist -- the eighth of his career and first this season. Bobrovsky made 27 saves for his sixth win.

Tuukka Rask stopped 29 shots for the Bruins, who lost their second in a row and dropped to 4-4-2.

The Blue Jackets had been plagued by slow starts but got on the board just 1:59 into the game when David Savard threw the puck toward the net and it wiggled past Rask off a deflection. Alexander Wennberg and Matt Calvert assisted on Savard's second goal of the season.

After a pair of unsuccessful power plays, Columbus found the back of the net again with less than three minutes left in the first period. Boone Jenner, playing in just his fifth game after returning from injury, scratched and clawed at Markus Nutivaara's rebound until he put it past Rask at 17:08. Josh Anderson was also credited with an assist on Jenner's first goal of the season.

The Blue Jackets' third goal of the night came at 8:27 of the second period when Nutivaara took a handoff from Bobrovsky and sent it nearly the length of the ice to a driving Tyler Motte, who put the puck in the net (see full recap).

Tavares helps Islanders cool off Golden Knights
NEW YORK -- John Tavares kept up his scoring surge with two more goals and the New York Islanders handed the expansion Vegas Golden Knights their second loss of the season, 6-3 on Monday night.

Andrew Ladd, Mathew Barzal, Cal Clutterbuck and Nikolay Kulemin also scored, and Jaroslav Halak stopped 31 shots to help New York win for the fifth time in six games. Tavares has eight goals in the last four games.

William Karlsson, Alex Tuch and Colin Miller scored for Vegas, which snapped a five-game winning streak and lost another goalie to an injury. With starter Marc-Andre Fleury and backup Malcolm Subban already sidelined, Oscar Dansk left after Tavares scored the tying goal late in the second period with an apparent leg injury.

Dansk, who came in 3-0 with an NHL-best 1.34 goals-against average, made 17 saves. Maxime Lagace, the fourth goalie Vegas has used in its inaugural season, came on for his NHL debut and gave up four goals on 11 shots.

Vegas led 2-1 after one period and the teams played more deliberate hockey for the first 10 minutes of the second. Dansk made two nice stops on Tavares, who had two hat tricks in the previous three games, in close with about eight minutes to go.

However, Tavares tied the score with his 10th goal with 5:10 left, deflecting a shot by Nick Leddy past Dansk, who was injured on the play. The Golden Knights challenged for goalie interference, but the goal stood after a review (see full recap).

Flyers-Lightning 5 things: Life without Sean Couturier

Flyers-Lightning 5 things: Life without Sean Couturier

Updated: 4:15 p.m.

Flyers at Lightning
7:30 p.m. on TCN and, Pregame Live at 7

A lot went down in Flyers Land on Tuesday night, when the orange and black picked up a 3-1 road win over the Florida Panthers.

And they’re right back at it Wednesday night, as the Flyers (9-8-3) travel to Tampa Bay for a matchup with the Lightning (12-7-1) at Amalie Arena.

Let’s get you caught up with five things to know.

1. Replacing Coots
A tall order but something the Flyers will have to do after center Sean Couturier exited Tuesday night’s game in pain with a lower-body injury and did not return. Sources tell CSN's Tim Panaccio that Couturier has a small MCL tear in his left knee.

The 23-year-old was placed on injured reserve Wednesday and will miss four to six weeks as the Flyers recalled center Scott Laughton from AHL affiliate Lehigh Valley.

Couturier’s skates are not easy to fill considering the forward’s two-way game affects both ends of the ice. Last season, the Flyers went 6-9-4 in regular-season games without Couturier.

As for his role centering the team’s second line, Michael Raffl can make the jump and play either forward position or Brayden Schenn could center the second unit while Raffl plays wing up top. Nick Cousins is also a possibility for the second line while Roman Lyubimov or Laughton, who had eight points in eight games for the Phantoms, take a bottom-six spot.

2. Mason in charge
Many are waiting in anticipation for backup goalie Anthony Stolarz’s first NHL start, but Steve Mason will continue to delay the 22-year-old’s debut with performances like the one he had Tuesday night.

Mason made a season-high 38 saves and was 1:51 away from his first shutout of 2016-17. Similar to the end of last season when Michal Neuvirth went down, Mason appears to be finding game-to-game consistency. He’s 3-1-1 over his last five outings with a 1.90 goals-against average and .933 save percentage.

There’s no way the 28-year-old will be given a breather until he needs or warrants it.

3. We meet again
The Flyers will get another crack at Tampa Bay netminder Andrei Vasilevskiy.

The 22-year-old is a no-brainer to start tonight for the Lightning. He blanked the Flyers, 3-0, last Saturday by making 32 saves. He’s 3-0-0 in his last three games, has pitched back-to-back shutouts and allowed just one goal on 98 shots the last three games.

Tampa Bay had its four-game win streak snapped Monday with a 3-1 loss to the Predators to finish a successful five-game road trip. The Lightning are a top-10 team in goals per game (3.05 — tied for fifth), goals against per game (2.40 — tied for ninth), power-play percentage (25.3 — third) and penalty-kill percentage (84.6).

4. Keep an eye on ...
Flyers: Raffl, who has two goals in his last four games, must take on a greater role with Couturier sidelined. We’ll get our first glimpse of the Flyers without their do-it-all centerman, and Raffl should see increased minutes across the board. He’s also a plus-4, tied for the team lead.

Lightning: Winger Nikita Kucherov is on a scary run right now with 20 points (nine goals, 11 assists) over his last 14 games in which he’s a plus-10. He’s tied for second in the NHL with 23 points overall.

5. This and that
• Mason is 3-4-2 with a 2.65 goals-against average and .878 save percentage in nine career games against Tampa Bay.

• Vasilevskiy is 2-1-0 with a 1.34 goals-against average and .958 save percentage in three matchups lifetime with the Flyers.

• The Flyers are 4-0-1 in the second game of back-to-back situations.

• The Lightning have lost consecutive games just twice this season.