The Detroit Red Wings snatched defeat from the jaws of victory on Thursday night, wasting an epic performance by forward Tyler Bertuzzi and blowing a pair of three-goal leads against the defending Stanley Cup champion Tampa Bay Lightning.
Tampa stormed back to life, scoring three times in the final 6:17 of the third period and then in overtime to win an absolutely crazy game by a 7-6 final score. Ondrej Palat’s second goal of the game 2:43 into the extra session completed the stunning comeback:
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Detroit enjoyed leads of 3-0 and 6-3 thanks to an offensive outburst from Bertuzzi, as well as goals from Dylan Larkin and Vladislav Namestnikov. However, Larkin was ejected from the game in the 2nd period for a retaliation punch against Tampa’s Mathieu Joseph.
Bertuzzi became just the third Wings player to score four goals in a game since 2011, joining Anthony Mantha and Jakub Vrana (ironically, who were traded for one another last spring). Newly acquired goaltender Alex Nedeljkovic finished with 41 saves.