Bolts battle right back

AL STRACHAN -- Toronto Sun

, Last Updated: 2:24 PM ET


 This was a new form of adversity for the Tampa Bay Lightning. For the first time, it was trailing in a series.

 But Tampa responded the same way it has to any other adversity this post-season.

 The Lightning rose to the next level, defeating the Calgary Flames 4-1 last night and now the Stanley Cup final is tied at one win apiece with the series shifting to Calgary for Game 3 tomorrow night.

 "It's just a mindset," said Martin St. Louis, who scored one of Tampa's goals. "We knew we wanted to come out and play our game. Getting that first goal was huge because it allowed us to do that."

 "We knew we were going to play the game we were supposed to play," head coach John Tortorella said, "the way the Tampa Bay Lightning was supposed to play the first game. We didn't. It's a mindset. "

 The Lightning started as it did after every loss in the previous series. It came out flying.

 The Flames, who are used to fending off furious attacks, were doing a decent job of holding them off until Vincent Lecavalier gave them a spark.

 Lecavalier, who loves to make plays behind the opposition's net, broke loose by banking the puck off the back of the net, reversing direction and picking up his own pass.

 Stephane Yelle, who had been right on Lecavalier, was totally fooled.

 Lecavalier got the puck to Jassen Cullimore, who put a hard shot on Miikka Kiprusoff. Ruslan Fedotenko, sitting on the doorstep, pounced on the rebound, which Kiprusoff also stopped. But when the rebound again went back to Fedotenko, Kiprusoff had no chance.

 "I think we set the tempo right from the first shift," said Fedotenko. "We got some momentum going. We just kept it going, and finally, it was for a goal."

 After the game, however, it was Lecavalier's move that had the players talking.

 "I've seen him do it in practice many times," defenceman Nolan Pratt said. "It's a great play. It's a highly skilled play. There aren't many guys who can do it."

 Lecavalier seemed to be embarrassed to talk about it.

 "I try it sometimes," he said. "It's nothing. I don't know. I guess sometimes ..."

 "Vinny is a special player," said defenceman Dan Boyle, who scored the Lightning's third goal. "He tries a lot of things that most players don't. He gets away with it.

 "So it was nothing new for us to see that in a game, and we like to see that, as long as it ends up in the net."

 That goal stood up until the third period. But at a point when the outlook appeared to be brightening for the Flames, the Lightning broke open the game.

 The Flames started the period short-handed, Tampa Bay getting a five-on-three advantage for 45 seconds.

 But Calgary killed off both penalties and strong defensive play of that nature often acts as a boost for the offence.

 But Yelle had been out of the box for only 14 seconds when Brad Richards, one of many Tampa players who was vastly improved from Game 1, scored from a goalmouth scramble.

 With the Flames reeling, it was only 79 seconds later that Boyle crept into the crease and converted a nifty pass from Richards.

 Trailing 3-0, it was time for the Flames to settle some scores and they went after Cory Stillman, who had been throwing his elbows around.

 But by the time penalties were handed out, the Lightning had another five-on-three advantage, this one for two minutes.

 And it didn't take St. Louis long to push the score to 4-0.

 Ville Nieminen broke Nikolai Khabibulin's shutout at 12:21 of the third, but that was all the Flames could do.

 It was nowhere near enough.


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