SUNRISE, FL - APRIL 21: The Florida Panthers celebrate their 3-2 win against the Tampa Bay Lightning in Game One of the First Round of the 2024 Stanley Cup Playoffs at the Amerant Bank Arena on April 21, 2024 in Sunrise, Florida. (Photo by Joel Auerbach/Getty Images)

It’s only one game. But your Tampa Bay Lightning will have to dig out of a hole to escape the first round of the NHL playoffs after a 3-2 loss to the Florida Panthers.

The two teams meet again Tuesday night in Sunrise before the series comes to Tampa later this week. The Tampa Bay Lightning will host Game 3 Thursday night. Game 4 happens Saturday afternoon at 5. This first round is a best of 7 series.

The Lightning kept this one close even as the final seconds ticked. After giving up an empty net goal, the Lightning were a threat late by answering with a goal of their own. But it wasn’t enough. Both goaltenders brought it today. Vasy was great, but the Florida Panthers’ Sergei Bobrovsky held the Bolts to just one non power play goal.

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