Tampa Bay Lightning defeat Detroit Red Wings in Game 4 with late goal from Ondrej Palat, take 3-1 series lead

DETROIT, Michigan -- The Tampa Bay Lightning defeated the Detroit Red Wings in Game 4 at Joe Louis Arena, 3-2. With the win, the Lightning own a 3-1 series lead. 

Tampa Bay got on the first power play of the game early in the action after Justin Abdelkader had to get off the ice for holding Vladislav Namestnikov. Moments later, Tyler Johnson got a pass from Jonathan Drouin and sent a cross-ice pass of his own to Nikita Kucherov, who buried a low shot past Red Wings goalie Petr Mrazek. The goal gave the Lightning a 1-0 lead just nine seconds into the power play. 

The Red Wings got their first power play due to Cedric Paquette slashing Andreas Athanasiou, but the team could not manage to get anything done. 

Entering the game, the Lightning were 1-for-13 on the power play, but Tampa Bay made it 3-for-16 as Kucherov scored his second power play goal of the game to give his team a 2-0 lead with 9:29 left in the second period. 

"We obviously lost the game on special teams," Detroit coach Jeff Blashill said. "Both the power play and the penalty kill."

As the puck was loose in front of Tampa Bay's goal, Darren Helm made his way into the middle and hammered the puck between the pipes and into the net to put the Red Wings on the board. 

Gustav Nyquist got a beautiful pass from Riley Sheahan in front of the net and with 8.4 seconds left in the second period, Nyquist found the back of the net to tie the game, 2-2. Nyquist scored the goal moments after coming out of the penalty box for goaltender interference. 

Ben Bishop had not allowed the Red Wings to score more than two goals on him in his last nine games against the team from the Motor City. Bishop increased his streak to ten games by not allowing Detroit to snag a goal in the third period. 

The Lightning, however, managed to score on a power play due to Jonathan Ericsson cross checking Ondrej Palat. Believe it or not, it was the shot off the stick of Palat with 2:59 left in the game that gave Tampa Bay the 3-2 lead. 

"I was looking for a stick," Drouin, who assisted Palat on the goal, said. 

Mrazek hit the bench to give the Red Wings an extra attacker, but Bishop and the Lightning defense prevailed to secure the 3-2 win in Game 4. 

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The Red Wings and Lightning will play Game 5 on Thursday in Tampa, Florida. The Red Wings must win to force Game 6 in Detroit or the season will be over. Meanwhile, Tampa Bay has the chance to close out the series at Amalie Arena

"Either you win or you go home and the season's over," Detroit defenseman Niklas Kronwall said.