Cirelli, Lightning hold off Predators for fifth win in row


NASHVILLE — Anthony Cirelli scored two goals, and the Tampa Bay Lightning defeated the Nashville Predators 4-1 for their fifth straight win at Bridgestone Arena on Monday.

Curtis McElhinney made 22 saves in his season debut for the Lightning (8-1-1), who will the play the Predators here again on Tuesday.

Dante Fabbro scored, and Pekka Rinne made 31 saves for Nashville (5-7-0), which has lost four of its past five games and seven of its past 10.

Cirelli gave Tampa Bay a 1-0 lead at 9:07 of the first period, scoring from a sharp angle on Rinne with a slap shot from along the left boards. 

Cirelli then made it 2-0 at 13:02 of the second period when he scored on a rebound after Mikhail Sergachev‘s initial attempt hit the post on the power play.

Dante Fabbro scored his first of the season to cut it to 2-1 at 11:08 of the third period with a slap shot on the power play. 

Blake Coleman (18:22) and Steven Stamkos (19:58) each scored into an empty net for the 4-1 final. 

Predators defenseman Mattias Ekholm missed the game because he and his wife are expecting a child.

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