A preview of things to come? Lightning best the Red Wings in a potential first-round match-up

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In three games now this season, the Detroit Red Wings have been unable to beat the Tampa Bay Lightning. That could be a problem in a few weeks time.

In what could be a preview of a potential first-round playoff match-up, the Lightning scored twice in the third period, including an empty net goal from Steven Stamkos for his 40th of the season, in a 3-1 victory over the visiting Red Wings.

The Red Wings are now 0-2-1 against the Lightning this season. The final regular season meeting is next Saturday.

And while the Red Wings have now been outscored 8-2 in their last games versus Tampa Bay, Friday’s meeting was pretty evenly played between both teams. Detroit, without Pavel Datsyuk, who reportedly will be evaluated Saturday to determine if he could play Sunday against St. Louis, had chances early but couldn’t beat Ben Bishop, who made 30 saves.

Alex Killorn scored his 15th goal of the season — he set a career high last year with 17 — and what turned out to be the winner just past the midway point of the third period.