Tampa Bay at Atlanta

Thrashers top Lightning on White's power-play goal in OT

CBSSports.com wire reports
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ATLANTA -- Todd White has two of Atlanta's five goals in overtime.

Such are the blessings of playing center on a front line with Ilya Kovalchuk and Marian Hossa.

"I don't know what it is about overtime," White said. "But I told them I was good for one (winner) a year. This makes two. I don't know."

White scored a power-play goal with 2:11 left in OT to give the Thrashers a 4-3 victory against the Tampa Bay Lightning on Monday night.

Kovalchuk had his NHL-best 17th goal for the Thrashers, who withstood another terrific effort by Vincent Lecavalier to earn their third consecutive victory.

Lecavalier had a goal and an assist for the Lightning to extend his multipoint streak to eight games, longest in the NHL since Jaromir Jagr had 10 straight for Pittsburgh from Feb. 18-March 9, 1996. The talented center leads the league with 34 points.

Kovalchuk tied it at 3 with a wrister with 2:23 left in regulation, and helped set up White's winner in overtime.

"Todd looks like a 60-goal scorer out there," Kovalchuk said. "His first overtime goal was top shelf and this one (went) low."

The Lightning led 3-1 on Martin St. Louis' eighth goal with 9:30 left in the third, but Bryan Little's third goal, coming four minutes later with Atlanta on a two-man advantage, made it 3-2.

Tampa Bay coach John Tortorella wasn't exactly pleased with the holding call on Brad Richards, which gave Atlanta an easier chance to start a comeback.

Unleashing a profanity-laced tirade after the game, Tortorella couldn't mask his anger.

"The frustrating part to me is that these organizations pay players millions upon millions of dollars, and they are the ones who should decide the outcome of games," Tortorella said. "They are the show. I'm trying to stay away from criticizing calls, but (to heck with that). I don't get it. It makes the coach's job just that much harder -- how do you prepare players when you get that (kind of call) out there? There's a disconnect somewhere. There's something obviously wrong with this game."

Lecavalier earned his 20th assist on St. Louis' shot from the bottom of the left circle, but it was Vaclav Prospal's 11th assist on a backhanded pass from the rear boards that set up the goal.

Lightning defenseman Filip Kuba was at a disadvantage in overtime after Kovalchuk took control of the puck behind the Atlanta blue line. Kovalchuk passed to White along the left boards, but Kuba also had to concern himself with Hossa coming down the right side.

Looking as if he thought Kovalchuk would probably take the shot, Kuba allowed too much room for White, who lifted the puck past goaltender Johan Holmqvist for the winner.

"We have been playing together eight games now," White said of his front-line work with Kovalchuk and Hossa. "I try to feed them. I feel more confident."

Atlanta took a 1-0 lead 3:13 into the first on Brad Larsen's first goal.

Jan Hlavac scored a goal, his fourth, for the second successive game to tie it at 1 at the 13:55 mark of the second.

The Thrashers improved to 5-0 in overtime this season. Since general manager Don Waddell took over as coach on Oct. 18, Atlanta is 10-4-0.

"We did a great job in the third period," Waddell said. "We only gave them four shots. We shut them down until they got the third goal, but this team never feels they are out of it."

Johan Hedberg had 17 saves to win his third consecutive start for the Thrashers.

Holmqvist, making his eighth consecutive start, fell to 10-6-1 after making 20 saves.

Over the past eight games, Kovalchuk and Hossa have combined for 18 goals and 12 assists.

St. Louis has 15 points, including six goals, in Tampa Bay's past eight games.

Notes

  • The season series is now 2-2.
  • Tampa Bay dropped to 5-3-1 in its past nine trips to Atlanta.
  • Kari Lehtonen, the Thrashers' No. 1 goalie, has been out since Oct. 20 with a strained groin, but he returned to practice on Sunday. Waddell doesn't anticipate that Lehtonen will return in the next two weeks.
Copyright 2015 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
 
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Ilya Kovalchuk jams the tying goal past Johan Holmqvist. Later, he gets an OT assist.  (Getty Images)
Ilya Kovalchuk jams the tying goal past Johan Holmqvist. Later, he gets an OT assist. (Getty Images)
Related Links
 
Scoreboard
Tampa Bay (10-8-2)02103
Atlanta  (10-10-0) «10214
Three Stars
T. White
ATL


Goals: 1
Assist(s): 0
M. Hossa
ATL


Goals: 0
Assist(s): 2
I. Kovalchuk
ATL


Goals: 1
Assist(s): 1

Related Video

Scoring Summary
1ST PERIOD
03:13Brad Larsen (1), Snap Shot. Assist: Pascal Dupuis, Bobby Holik
2ND PERIOD
13:55Jan Hlavac (4), Tip-In. Assist: Michel Ouellet, Brad Richards
14:33Vincent Lecavalier (14), Wrist Shot. Assist: Filip Kuba, Vaclav Prospal
3RD PERIOD
10:30Martin St. Louis (8), Snap Shot. Assist: Vaclav Prospal, Vincent Lecavalier
14:42Power Play - Bryan Little (3), Tip-In. Assist: Marian Hossa, Slava Kozlov
17:37Ilya Kovalchuk (17), Snap Shot. Assist: Marian Hossa, Niclas Havelid
OT
02:49Power Play - Todd White (5), Snap Shot. Assist: Ilya Kovalchuk, Tobias Enstrom
Penalty Summary
1ST PERIOD
12:06Kuba, 2 min, High-Sticking
2ND PERIOD
10:13Hlavac, 2 min, Hooking
18:17Zhitnik, 2 min, Holding
3RD PERIOD
29.0Ranger, 2 min, Slashing
04:01Hossa, 2 min, Diving/Embellishment
10:42White, 2 min, Tripping
13:08Prospal, 2 min, Slashing
13:57O'Brien, 2 min, Hooking
OT
02:27Richards, 2 min, Holding
Shots On Goal
 123T
Tampa Bay610420
Atlanta106622
Goalies
GoalieMINSSGA
Johan Holmqvist 62:49204
Johan Hedberg 62:09173
Game Information
Attendance - 13419
Referees - Paul Devorski, Dave Jackson
Linesmen - David Brisebois, Ryan Galloway
 
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