The Lightning pulled off a rare road feat with Thursday's 5-2 victory against Buffalo.
With the win Tampa Bay earned its second victory away from home - not counting the games in Europe - in as many games this season. It took the Lightning until Nov. 10 of last season to pick up the second road win in their 10th try.
"To a man, we played a great hockey game," said goaltender Olie Kolzig, who stopped 29 shots for his first win in a Lightning uniform.
The win also came in a building that has been a literal house of horrors for Tampa Bay, which was 1-4-1 in the previous six visits. Some of those losses came in the lopsided variety, including a seven-goal second period in November 2006, and a six-goal third period in March. Thursday, the Lightning had the advantage from the get-go and wound up outshooting the Sabres 40-31.
"We came into Buffalo, where we are usually kind of average and in the past we weren't skating and I don't know what," said captain Vinny Lecavalier, who had a pair of assists for his second consecutive multipoint game. "Tonight it was the total opposite, we were skating with the puck and controlling it. We came out flying and we are playing well as a team."
Tampa Bay - Steven Stamkos (1, 2), Jussi Jokinen (2), Ryan Malone (2), Paul Ranger (1)
Buffalo - Clarke MacArthur (5), Tomas Vanek (9)
HE SAID IT
"We're a cold-weather team; we can't play in the heat." - Lightning coach Barry Melrose, jokingly describing Tampa Bay's two-game winning streak away from home
LW Ryan Craig was activated off injured reserve Thursday, but was a healthy scratch. Craig had been out with a groin strain since Oct. 8 and has yet to appear in a game. RW Radim Vrbata, who injured his groin Oct. 22, has been placed on injured reserve retroactive to last week and is eligible to return when he's cleared.
The Lightning will host a Tampa Bay Rays' appreciation night Saturday against Ottawa. Anybody who shows up to the box office wearing any form of Rays' garb is eligible to purchase a ticket at a 50 percent discount. The offer is good only Saturday.