The Tampa Bay Lightning struck quickly against the Toronto Maple Leafs tonight, Radko Gudas’ blue line wrist shot that snuck threw a slew of bodies opened scoring with less than a minute off the clock. The Leafs responded quickly and doubly, Phil Kessel and Nikolai Kulemin both scored to give the Leafs a lead just minutes later. Steven Stamkos put the Lightning back on top with a pair of bullets wile left uncovered by the Toronto defence. The period ended on an unfortunate note, Alex Killorn’s hit from behind on Paul Ranger left the defender motionless on the ice, after a few moments he would be stretchered off. Killorn was given a five minute major and ejected. Soon after this it was announced Ranger would be brought to hospital.
Stamkos completed his hat trick early in the second period to makeg it 4-2 Tampa. B.J. Crombeen and David Clarkson fought a few minutes later, Clarkson landing one hard punch which sent Crombeen to the ice.
Jake Gardiner got the Leafs within one with a spinning wrist shot after skating around Tampa’s net. The Lightning restored their two goal lead soon after Tyler Johnson’s one-timer. The Leafs created plenty of scoring chances in the dying minutes but Ben Bishop stood tall and kept the Lightning in the lead. The game finished 5-3.