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Bolts breakthrough? Lightning slip by Oilers for sixth straight win

Ondrej Palat, Anders Nilsson

Tampa Bay Lightning left wing Ondrej Palat (18), of the Czech Republic, celebrates after scoring past Edmonton Oilers goalie Anders Nilsson (39), of Sweden, during the second period of an NHL hockey game Tuesday, Jan. 19, 2016, in Tampa, Fla. (AP Photo/Chris O’Meara)


Are the Tampa Bay Lightning finally breaking through?

It’s a reasonable topic to broach at this point, as the Bolts (narrowly) beat the Edmonton Oilers 5-4 on Tuesday, giving them six straight wins. In case you’re wondering, that’s the Lightning’s longest winning streak of this up-and-down 2015-16 season.

(Really, they’ve been quite impressive in 2016 so far, winning seven of eight January games.)

With this win, the Lightning remain in third place in the Atlantic, as the Red Wings hold a game in hand. There’s plenty of incentive to keep this run going, too, as the floundering Florida Panthers’ grip on the top spot seems pretty loose.

Considering some of the lows of the Lightning’s campaign, it’s probably heartening just be in the thick of the playoff race.

Now they can once again set their sights a little higher.