The Lightning didn’t ‘wilt’ against the Ducks

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The Bolts didn’t make it easy on themselves Saturday.

Sitting at the bottom of the Eastern Conference, a shocking position for this club to find itself in after back-to-back lengthy playoff runs, the Lightning had a lead on the Anaheim Ducks only to give it up before finally prevailing for a 3-2 shootout victory.

Brian Boyle scored the winning goal in the four-round shootout.

Following a loss to the Senators earlier this week, Lightning coach Jon Cooper spoke at length about the state his players might be in, calling their struggles “uncharted territory” and that when a team so accustomed to success now struggles to win games, it can be a test.

Needing wins to remain in the 2017 playoff picture, Tampa Bay held a distinct edge in play versus the Ducks, and that includes after giving up the tying goal from Ryan Getzlaf in the third period.

It’s a win. It’s something perhaps the Lightning can build off, if they are to climb the standings and back into the playoff race.

“What I didn’t like is the fact we gave up the lead,” said Cooper, per the Tampa Bay Times.

“But the big thing for us, maybe in recent games we may have wilted then. But we kept creating chances. We went into overtime and I don’t think we gave up a shot (the Lightning didn’t). That was the difference tonight. Even when adversity struck, they said, ‘Okay, enough.'”

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