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Bishop blanks Hurricanes in Lightning debut

RALEIGH, N.C. — Before Thursday night's game against the Hurricanes, new Lightning goaltender Ben Bishop said his biggest worry was remembering the names of his defensemen.

Asked after his 5-0 victory at PNC Arena if he succeeded, Bishop said, laughing, "I think so, but I don't know."

Bishop not only got everyone's name right, defenseman Matt Carle said, by the third period he was giving suggestions about how to run the team's system.

In other words, the 6-foot-7 Bishop, acquired Wednesday from the Senators for rookie forward Cory Conacher and a fourth-round draft pick, had a spotlight debut with 45 saves to tie Daren Puppa for most by a Tampa Bay goalie in a shutout.

"Very calm," Carle said. "The puck's going back, and he's just looking and talking. He's such a big guy, he can probably still go down on his knees and cover most of the net."

Bishop had help.

Teddy Purcell, Tom Pyatt and Keith Aulie scored in the second period. Marty St. Louis, who had three points, and Ben Pouliot scored in the third.

Defenseman Eric Brewer was plus-4 with four blocks. Carle played 25:29 and had two blocks for the Lightning (16-18-2), which is 2-0-1 since coach Jon Cooper took over March 25.

The buzzkill: Defenseman Victor Hedman left the game in the first period and is day-to-day with a lower-body injury.

Still, "a great team effort," Cooper said. "And it all starts from the back end with our goaltender."

Bishop shined in the second period after he shook off a blast from Carolina defenseman Joe Corvo that hit him on an unprotected part of his midsection and left him momentarily face-down.

Less than a minute later, Bishop stopped Jeff Skinner's in-close backhand to preserve a 1-0 lead.

"He looked confident," Cooper said. "He wasn't sprawling all over the place. He was just steady. It got to the point where it was like, '(Bishop) will get this,' and we fed off that."

Bishop, 26, who in his 37th career game got his third shutout and second of the season, was modest.

"Guys played great in front of me," he said. "This is big for the team. There are no individuals in here."

And other than fighting off fatigue from traveling Wednesday from Boston, where Ottawa was playing, he said, "It felt like every other game."

It really wasn't, though. Bishop earned only the fourth 40-save shutout in team history.

"If this is an indication of what he will become, it bodes well for us," Cooper said.

"He's big, and he plays big," St. Louis said. "He moves the puck. He's calm. He was tremendous."

 

Lightning 0 3 2 5
Hurricanes 0 0 0 0

 

First PeriodNone. PenaltiesDwyer, Car (boarding), :38.

Second Period1, Tampa Bay, Purcell 8 (Carle), :28. 2, Tampa Bay, Pyatt 8 (Killorn, Brewer), 15:55. 3, Tampa Bay, Aulie 2 (Stamkos, St. Louis), 19:17. PenaltiesBrewer, TB (holding), 1:42; Gudas, TB (delay of game), 3:05.

Third Period4, Tampa Bay, St. Louis 9 (Pouliot, Carle), 2:24. 5, Tampa Bay, Pouliot 7 (Stamkos, St. Louis), 7:30. PenaltiesGudas, TB (interference), 11:04. Shots on GoalTampa Bay 9-13-8—30. Carolina 16-12-17—45. Power-play opportunitiesTampa Bay 0 of 1; Carolina 0 of 3. GoaliesTampa Bay, Bishop 9-5-0 (45 shots-45 saves). Carolina, Ellis 4-6-1 (30-25). A17,042 (18,680). T2:21. Referees—Brian Pochmara, Justin St. Pierre. LinesmenSteve Barton, Brian Mach.

Bishop blanks Hurricanes in Lightning debut 04/05/13 [Last modified: Friday, April 5, 2013 10:09am]
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