Monday May 29th, 2023 5:07AM

Stamkos gets 500th goal in hat trick, Lightning beat Canucks

By The Associated Press
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VANCOUVER, British Columbia (AP) — Steven Stamkos scored his 500th NHL goal and then added two more for a hat trick, leading the Tampa Bay Lightning to a 5-2 victory over the Vancouver Canucks on Wednesday night.

Brayden Point and Nikita Kucherov each had a goal and an assist in Tampa Bay's fifth consecutive win. Alex Killorn had two assists and Brian Elliott stopped 37 shots.

Andrei Kuzmenko and Quinn Hughes each scored a power-play goal in the third period for Vancouver (18-23-3).

Canucks goaltender Spencer Martin allowed four goals on 10 shots before being pulled just past the midway mark of the first period. He was replaced by Collin Delia, who made 14 saves.

The Lightning (29-13-1) also beat the Canucks 5-4 in Tampa last week.

Vancouver has not won in regulation since a 4-2 victory over Colorado on Jan. 5. The Canucks are 2-8-0 in their last 10 games.

Stamkos sent his third goal of the night — and 21st of the season — into the empty net with 1:22 left.

Hughes cut the Lightning lead to 4-2 after Stamkos was called for tripping midway through the third period.

The defenseman muscled his way to the front of the net and forced a backhanded shot up and over Elliott for his fourth goal of the season at the 9:10 mark.

Tampa Bay grabbed control with four goals in the first period.

Stamkos, who turns 33 on Feb. 7, got his milestone goal at 4:40. Killorn sliced a pass across the low slot to Stamkos, and the Lightning captain tapped it in.

Tampa Bay’s bench emptied, with players mobbing Stamkos in the corner in celebration as the crowd cheered.

Kucherov scored his 18th goal of the season on a blistering one-timer from a faceoff circle at 8:28. Point’s backhanded shot at 13:18 made it 3-0. It was Point's team-leading 26th of the season.

Stamkos put away his second goal of the night at 14:35, wrapping a wrist shot around Martin’s outstretched pad.


Vancouver paid tribute to former Canuck Wayne “Gino” Odjick, who died Sunday at 52. Players wore jerseys with Odjick’s name and No. 29 on the back for warmups. Cheers of “Gino! Gino! Gino!” echoed throughout the rink several times and highlights of Odjick’s career played on the big screen throughout the game.


Stamkos extended his point streak to six games. He has four goals and six assists in the stretch.


Lightning: At Edmonton on Thursday night.

Canucks: Host Colorado on Friday night.


AP NHL: https://apnews.com/hub/NHL and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

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