The much maligned Ben Bishop made 28 saves for his first shutout of the season to lead the Tampa Bay Lightning over the Los Angeles Kings, 5-0 at Amalie Arena last night.
“Big Ben” made 19 saves in the first period in his first shutout since March 28, 2016.
Lightning forward Alex Killorn was scratched because of an undisclosed injury.
The Bolts Jonathan Drouin scored the only goal of a fast paced opening period, his 16th, at 7:46 unassisted.
The Kings outshot the Lightning 19-6 in the first twenty minutes.
Ben Bishop was outstanding, stopping all 19 shots he faced.
The second period saw Nikita Kucherov score his 20th goal of the season at 6:55 from Andrej Sustr (6) and Vladislav Namestnikov (13). Namestnikov sent Kucherov off on a breakaway with a beautiful stretch pass.
The Lightning made it 4-0 as Namestnikov hit Kucherov with another great stretch pass that saw Kucherov beat Peter Budaj at 18:18. Luke Witkowski also garnered an assist on the play. This was Kucherov’s fourth multi goal game of the season.
Shots at this point were 22-14 Kings.
Tampa Bay won consecutive games for first time since December 20-22 to improve to 24-24-6 (54 pts) on the year.
Coach Jon Cooper: “Bish played extremely well in the 1st period when we needed him…We felt extremely fortunate to come to the room with a lead.”
Cooper on the Killorn injury: “That’s a tough one. Hopefully this is just a one game thing.”
Ben Bishop on his first shutout of season. “It’s been awhile so I’ll definitely take it. Just had to hold the fort down.”
Tampa Bay will travel to Minnesota to take on the Wild on Friday at 8:00 PM.