Bolts continue to slump, fall to Isles 5-2

“We didn’t execute really well tonight,” Lightning forward Marty St. Louis said. “There was not enough energy; not so much physical energy, but we were kind of waiting. This is a fast team and they caught us in some of our mistakes. We’ve hit a wall here, but we are going to fight through that wall and break that wall down and keep going.”


The Lightning have been a team that has found a way to overcome adversity time and time again as the season has rolled on, and they may not have faced more adversity then they do right now. This is the time of year where the team should be gearing up for the playoffs, not have more questions than answers.


“It’s tough,” St. Louis said of struggling as the postseason approaches. “It’s very demanding mentally, but that’s sports. If it was easy, everybody would be doing it. It’s tough to be on top of your game individually and as a team. We just want to hit strides going into the playoffs. I believe we will, but this is adversity right now and we’re being tested. Each and every one of us has to fight through it and answer that test.”


Head coach Guy Boucher has a project in front of him. Correcting this will not be easy, or necessarily pretty, but he has to figure out how to get this ship pointed back in the right direction.


“It’s never easy,” Boucher said of fixing the problem. It’s always difficult. When you are asking something of someone on the power play and you don’t get it, it’s more then just saying it. I’ll have to enforce a lot of things individually.”


The Lightning next face a huge home-and-home test with the Carolina Hurricanes Friday and Saturday. Carolina currently sits 9th in the Eastern Conference, and will be desperate for points, so the Bolts will need to have their A game ready to go.


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The Tampa Bay Lightning took to the ice Tuesday against the New York Islanders hoping to end an ugly streak of struggling against the bottom feeders of the Eastern Conference behind them. They were also hoping to erase the memories of a rough 4-game road trip that saw them get points, but also saw them lose a number of close leads late. What the Lightning got on Tuesday night was a candidate for the worst game of the season.

Guy Boucher called it a “lack of structure.” That would be a great place to start.

There also appeared to be a lack of energy. And the inability to score, or keep the puck out of their own net with the power play.

The one thing that went right for the Bolts was that they jumped out to a quick lead when Nate Thompson knocked home a puck from right in front of the net. From there, it was all Islanders, all the time as they scored four straight goals to take over, and ultimately win the game.

For the Lightning, more questions, and maybe even a small amount of reason for concern.

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