The Lightning couldn’t find the net. That’s not a euphemism to say they couldn’t score. The Lightning couldn’t get a shot.
This wasn’t just for a few minutes, either. Tampa Bay did not put a shot on net for the entire second period of a 4-3 overtime loss to the Hurricanes on Sunday.
To be exact, the Lightning went 25 minutes, 52 seconds between Steven Stamkos’ goal at 17:44 of the first period and a shot by him early in the third. That’s not a winning recipe.
Stamkos, with an eye on last season’s playoff exit, ripped into the team for habits it can’t seem to break.
“We just continue to be the freewheeling team that thinks we can just come into games and win because we’re skilled,” Stamkos said. “We keep falling back into the same old bad habits that we’ve been doing, that cost us the season we had last year.
“Unless we change things, it’s going to be a really, really, really long year.”
Tampa Bay (1-1-1) started training camp talking about the need to be more responsible defensively and to rely less on its goaltending.