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Penguins’ grip on playoff spot loosens with loss at Tampa Bay

Updated 16 hours back

TAMPA, Fla. — Right after they played a further wild, physical, barnburner Saturday evening, there’s no doubt a playoff matchup in between the Pittsburgh Penguins and Tampa Bay Lightning would be a take care of.

Only problem is, there’s no promise the Penguins are going to get to the playoffs.

Tyler Johnson broke a 3rd-time period tie, main the Lightning to a 5-4 victory and sending the Penguins to their fourth straight loss.

The Penguins erased a two-purpose deficit and pushed back again against a prime-flight Tampa Bay team on the highway, but none of all those items will give them a stage in the standings.

If Carolina beats New Jersey on Sunday, the Penguins will be knocked out of the playoff photograph and into ninth area in the Eastern Conference.

“Close video games like that are going to be quite typical all the way in in this article,” Sidney Crosby claimed. “We have to make positive we’re discovering a way to get all those big plays. I think that is the additional discouraging part than nearly anything.”

Two brutal, obvious glitches stood out above the relaxation for the Penguins.

Late in the first time period, with the Penguins up 1- on Garrett Wilson’s first NHL purpose, Bryan Rust turned a puck in excess of inside the offensive blue line, offering Tampa Bay a naked two-on-none break. Yanni Gourde concluded a move from Brayden Issue.

“The choice was good. Sid was open up. The move was (expletive) horrendous,” Rust claimed. “That one’s on me.”

Early in the second time period, with the Penguins on the power enjoy down 2-1, Phil Kessel turned a puck in excess of in the slot in the offensive zone. It led to an Anthony Cirelli purpose on a two-on-a single with Alex Killorn.

It was the league-main 12th small-handed purpose authorized by the Penguins this period.

“I have absolutely nothing additional to say about the power enjoy,” mentor Mike Sullivan claimed.

The Penguins battled back again by scoring two times in the eight minutes that adopted the Cirelli purpose.

Jared McCann lobbed a puck from the remaining wing previous goalie Andrei Vasilevskiy, and Rust stuffed in the rebound of a Jake Guentzel wrap-all-around. They also received a Tanner Pearson purpose late to get back again inside a single.

“I thought we fought tough all evening. We battled. We pushed,” Sullivan claimed. “I even now think, to a particular extent, the varieties of faults we make, we defeat ourselves with some of the choices we make with the puck.”

Tyler Johnson scored the winning purpose on a shot from the remaining faceoff circle off the hurry about 5 minutes into the 3rd time period. The Lightning arrived perilously near to getting into the zone offside on the enjoy, but Sullivan didn’t problem.

“(Video mentor Andy Saucier) seemed at it a number of various means. He thought it was onside,” Sullivan claimed.

Casey DeSmith, a bit of a shock starter with Matt Murray cleared to return from an upper-system injuries, created 29 saves.

“I thought Casey was high-quality,” Sullivan claimed. “The objectives they scored had been fantastic objectives. They’re not effortless to quit.”

The lousy blood that has percolated in between the groups this period continued to boil.

In the second time period, immediately after Teddy Blueger fought Adam Erne and in advance of Jack Johnson fought Killorn, Crosby and Tyler Johnson had been associated in a confrontation. Crosby dropped his suitable glove and cocked his fist but didn’t throw a punch. They exchanged words on the way to the penalty box.

“I really do not have a good rationalization,” Crosby claimed. “The first (sport) kind of carried in excess of to the upcoming a single and the upcoming a single.”

Crosby played in his 916th profession sport with the Penguins, breaking Mario Lemieux’s franchise report of 915. Nick Bjugstad remaining the sport with an injuries in the 3rd time period.

Jonathan Bombulie is a Tribune-Overview workers writer. You can make contact with Jonathan at
jbombulie@tribweb.com or
by way of Twitter @BombulieTrib.

Lightning left wing Alex Killorn goes down as he fights Penguins defenseman Jack Johnson during the second period Saturday, Feb. 9, 2019, in Tampa, Fla.

Lightning remaining wing Alex Killorn goes down as he fights Penguins defenseman Jack Johnson during the second time period Saturday, Feb. 9, 2019, in Tampa, Fla.

Lightning center Anthony Cirelli goes airborne after a check by Penguins defenseman Marcus Pettersson during the second period Saturday, Feb. 9, 2019, in Tampa, Fla.

Lightning center Anthony Cirelli goes airborne immediately after a test by Penguins defenseman Marcus Pettersson during the second time period Saturday, Feb. 9, 2019, in Tampa, Fla.

Penguins right wing Bryan Rust and Lightning center Yanni Gourde battle for the puck during the first period Saturday, Feb. 9, 2019, in Tampa, Fla.

Penguins suitable wing Bryan Rust and Lightning center Yanni Gourde fight for the puck during the first time period Saturday, Feb. 9, 2019, in Tampa, Fla.

Penguins center Sidney Crosby heads up the ice against the Lightning during the first period Saturday, Feb. 9, 2019, in Tampa, Fla.

Penguins center Sidney Crosby heads up the ice against the Lightning during the first time period Saturday, Feb. 9, 2019, in Tampa, Fla.

Penguins right wing Patric Hornqvist and Lightning defenseman Erik Cernak battle along the boards during the first period Saturday, Feb. 9, 2019, in Tampa, Fla.

Penguins suitable wing Patric Hornqvist and Lightning defenseman Erik Cernak fight along the boards during the first time period Saturday, Feb. 9, 2019, in Tampa, Fla.



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