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Lightning blank Sharks as Stamkos scores milestone goal

Reuters | San Jose | Updated: 02-02-2020 12:00 IST | Created: 02-02-2020 11:57 IST
Lightning blank Sharks as Stamkos scores milestone goal
Image Credit: pixabay

Steven Stamkos continue his climb up the NHL's career goals list and Curtis McElhinney made 30 saves for his first shutout of the season as the Tampa Bay Lightning defeated the host San Jose Sharks 3-0 Saturday night. Nikita Kucherov and Ondrej Palat also scored for the Lightning, who went 3-0-1 on their four-game trip to Dallas, Los Angeles, Anaheim, and San Jose, and improved to 15-2-1 in their past 18 games.

Tampa Bay also improved to 8-0-0 this season against Pacific Division teams. The Lightning have won 11 straight against that division dating to Feb. 12, 2019. San Jose goaltender Aaron Dell stopped 32 of 34 shots, but the Sharks suffered their second consecutive defeat and dropped to 1-5-0 in their past six games.

The first period was scoreless, despite the Lightning having a 13-2 advantage in shots on goal. Dell made a spectacular pad save to keep things even, sliding across the crease to stop Tampa Bay's Brayden Point at the right post. Stamkos opened the scoring at 4:04 of the second period. After a Tampa Bay shot went wide of the net, defenseman Kevin Shattenkirk skated to the sideboards to retrieve the puck and sent a cross-ice pass to Stamkos at the left faceoff dot. Stamkos blistered a one-timer just inside the left post before Dell could fully scramble into position.

The goal was the 416th of Stamkos' NHL career, moving him into a tie for 85th place all-time. He passed San Jose's Joe Thornton, who has 415. Stamkos has 11 points (six goals, five assists) in a seven-game point streak and 24 points (13 goals, 11 assists) in 17 career games against San Jose. The Sharks outshot Tampa Bay 18-8 the second, but couldn't solve McElhinney, who was making just his 14th start of the season in place of Andrei Vasilevskiy, who earned his 150th career victory Friday night in a 4-2 victory at the Anaheim Ducks. McElhinney improved to 6-6-2.

Kucherov scored on a backhander at 17:57 of the third, off an assist from Stamkos, and Palat added an empty-netter at 19:43 to cap the victory.

(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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