By scoring in the last minute of Match 3 on Sunday, Ondrej Palat saved the Lightning from being on life support devices. Last night at the Amalie Arena, he played a huge role in getting his team back on the series.
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The Czech skillfully prepared the goal of Nikita Kucherov, as well as being a partner in the goal of Stephen Stamkos. A three-point night he completed by scoring in a blank net to confirm Lightning’s 4-1 win in Tampa.
In doing so, John Cooper’s team tied the Eastern Conference Finals Series against the New York Rangers with two wins each.
They will be happy to return to their comfortable homes. Since the start of the Spring Championships, they have enjoyed only two wins on nine occasions in the racers’ rinks.
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The good news is that this match is now the best match of the three, with two meetings scheduled at Madison Square Garden.
Vasilevskiy in figure
Incidentally, the defending champions have scored seven goals since Cooper combined Balat, Kucherov and Stamkos in the third game. Six of those seven goals were scored by a skater from that unit.
The author of the winning goal, Kucherov has achieved the goal in each of the past three meetings. A sequence in which six points are collected.
Igor Shesterkin, he was thwarted three times in 30 shots, and his colleagues will have to find solutions.
Especially since Andrei Vasilevsky seems to have found his toughness after allowing nine goals in his first two matches. In the last two, he only gave up three times.
Yesterday he held 33 of the 34 Rangers rounds. Artemi Banarin, in the power game, denied him the second closing of the series, with just over three and a half minutes to play.
Gerard Galant’s team has been busy since the start of qualifying. The Pittsburgh Fallen Penguins and the Carolina Hurricanes in seven games, played last night, are 17 games in 36 days.
Inevitably, such a pace will catch up with them eventually. One wonders if it hasn’t already started. Not to mention soldiers fall in battle.
Perhaps injured in the ribs during the third match, Ryan Strom did not participate in the meeting. During this, the “blues” lost another position.
Philip Chettle left the match midway through the second frame after taking a check from Victor Hedman.
Chittel is the center of the Rangers’ surprising youth trio, whose contribution greatly helped New Yorkers reach this ultimate bond.
▶In the morning, Samuel Blais participated in a full training session for the first time since the fall. Quebec has been sidelined with a right knee sprain since his clash with PK Suban in November.
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