Not much was happening as time wound down in the first here at MSG. Then the league's leading goalscorer struck.
Michael Del Zotto' s pass hit Brad Richards' skate and before you knew it, Steven Stamkos had the puck barreling down the right side with Anton Stralman in pursuit. Stralman hooked him and the ref raised his arm for a delayed penalty, but Stamkos, diving, managed to get a backhander past Martin Biron with 1:04 left. It was his 36th of the season, with Brett Connolly and JT Wyman awarded the assists.
Stralman had stopped a Stamkos rush and shot earlier.
Rangers lead in shots 10-4, and killed a Tampa power play at 3:50 with Brandon Dubinsky off for slashing the stick out of Brett Clark's hands. The Lightning moved the puck well for a bottom-five power play, though.