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Predators Shell Lightning

The only spark the Tampa Bay Lightning had came after the game.

Tampa Bay coach Jacques Demers spent 45 minutes following Wednesday night's 3-0 loss to the Nashville Predators having his players watch the first two periods on videotape while in full gear.

What they saw wasn't pretty as Greg Johnson had a goal and two assists and Mike Dunham stopped 27 shots.

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  • Demers, who could be heard yelling in the locker room, was much calmer when he met with the media one hour after the game's conclusion.

    "When we made the commitment to youth, you know some nights you're going to have battles with kids," Demers said. "We're going to let them know when we're not happy and we're going to let them when we're happy. Maturity, growing, understanding what they have to do to win."

    Johnson assisted on two first-period goals and scored a third-period goal during a partial breakaway.

    Dunham earned his first shutout this season and fourth of his career. The shutout was the second for the expansion Predators, who beat Phoenix 2-0 on Jan. 15 behind Tomas Vokoun.

    "It was a tough game to get into," said Dunham about a very quiet announced crowd of 11,985. "It was very quiet. It was like an exhibition game."

    Sergei Krivokrasov and Patrick Cote scored 1:26 apart in the first period as the Predators took a 2-0 lead.

    "We limited their chances and tried to shut them down ... and it worked," Dunham said. "We played one of our better games defensively."

    Demers coached his 995th game to move into a fifth-place tie with Mike Keenan on the all-time games coached list. Only Scotty Bowman (1,884), Al Arbour (1,606), Dick Irvin (1,442) and Bill Reay (1,102) have coached in more NHL games.

    Krivokrasov recorded his team-best 23rd goal after faking Lightning goalie Corey Schwab out of position and scoring on a backhander at 6:58. Cote scored his first NHL goal coming ihis 67th game on a backhand rebound at 8:24.

    "We should be playing hard all the time," Lightning center Chris Gratton said. "For whatever reason, we didn't."

    Johnson made it 3-0 at 2:07 of the third period on his 16th goal.

    The Lightning are 0-26-1 when trailing after one period and 1-38-3 when behind after 40 minutes. Nashville has gone 5-5-1 in its last 11 road games.

    Lightning defenseman Petr Svoboda sprained his left knee and was classified on the injury list as day to day.

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