TAMPA, Fla. (AP) — Cedric Paquette scored his fifth goal in the last three games, Ben Bishop made 34 saves, and the Atlantic Division-leading Tampa Bay Lightning beat the Columbus Blue Jackets 3-1 on Saturday night for their franchise-best 10th straight home victory.
Brett Connolly and Valtteri Filppula also scored for Tampa Bay, which hasn’t lost at home since a 5-3 loss to Washington on Dec. 9. Bishop lost his shutout bid when Ryan Johansen scored with 3:26 remaining.
Curtis McElhinney stopped 31 shots for the Blue Jackets, who are 0-18-0 when trailing entering the third period. Columbus has been outscored 58-38 in the third period.
Connolly opened the scoring with 23.5 seconds left in the first. The goal came 2 minutes after McElhinney made a pair of nice saves on Tyler Johnson.
Paquette doubled the lead midway through the third period. He had gone 29 games without a goal before his current three-game goal-scoring stretch.
Filppula made it 3-0 just 1:41 later.
Brandon Dubinsky had his short-handed backhander during a 2-on-1 beat Bishop but hit the post midway through the first. Earlier in the period, Bishop stopped an in-close backhander by Cam Atkinson.
McElhinney also made a stretched-out pad save near the post on Ryan Callahan’s power-play breakaway with 9 minutes to go in the second.
NOTES: Columbus D Ryan Murray returned after missing 36 games with a knee injury and had an assist. … Blue Jackets LW Matt Calvert didn’t play due to illness. … Lightning rookie Jonathan Drouin assisted on Paquette’s goal and has four assists in the last three games. … Tampa Bay is 22-0-1 when ahead after two periods.
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