The reigning Stanley Cup champions could have been at the ropes. But the Tampa Bay Lightning, winners of consecutive titles, lower back home and reduce their two-recreation deficit all the way down to one, defeating the Colorado Avalanche 6-2 in Monday’s game three.
It wasn’t simply the 2-recreation deficit within the Stanley Cup Final that had Lightning fans involved; it’s how the Avalanche had won. Colorado jumped out to early leads in each video game and, in Game 2, clearly ruled Tampa Bay. Lightning goaltender Andrei Vasilevskiy, one of the great postseason goalies in NHL history, changed into blitzed for seven desires on Saturday.
But on Monday, it turned into Colorado’s goaltending feeling the pressure. Darcy Kuemper changed into pulled while Tampa Bay took a 5-2 lead past the halfway point of the second duration.
Here’s what went down as the Lightning were given it accomplished back on their domestic ice in Game three.
We’ve got ourselves a sequence
Colorado is in truly uncharted territory.
The Avalanche hadn’t lost considering May 25 earlier than falling 6-2 on Monday. They hadn’t misplaced within the postseason via that big of a margin. Kuemper becomes pulled, putting a cloud over their goaltending. All that intensity scoring dried up. It was all awful.
Tampa Bay was a pressure. It has to had been an elating victory — besides the Lightning lost Nicholas Paul and Nikita Kucherov to obvious injuries within the method. Kucherov exited late within the 1/3 after you have tied up with Devon Toews alongside the boards. Paul left within the 2d length, right after scoring a goal.
It changed into the first road loss Colorado had suffered inside the playoffs, however, the Avs nonetheless lead the collection 2-1. Tampa Bay remains best at domestic in the postseason. What does that foreshadow for Game 4 on Wednesday? Stay tuned. — Kristen Shilton
Tampa Bay came to play
As Jon Cooper said before Game 3: “These guys are a heck of a group, but so are we. And we’ve been in those spots earlier than.”
He’s right; the Lightning has been down earlier than. They’ve been counted out before. And just like in those spots, reviews of their death in the Stanley Cup Final appear greatly exaggerated.
Just just like the Lightning roared returned from a 2-0 deficit on the road within the Eastern Conference Final, they appear like a one-of-a-kind group in Game 3 towards the Avalanche. They mustered 16 photographs in Game 2; they’ve pumped 26 pictures at the Avalanche purpose tonight. They have earned 50% of the shot attempts thru durations once you have simply 29% of them in Game 2. They could not rate on the energy play within the first two games; they ultimately tallied one in Game 3. Their stars were kept in check in Denver; Nikita Kucherov, Steven Stamkos, Ondrej Palat and Victor Hedman all had multi-factor games.
Oh, and perhaps most significantly: They scored six goals, to the Avalanche’s dreams, and chased Colorado goalie Darcy Kuemper inside the manner.
“We’ve got to go out there and locate our satisfactory sport proper now,” said Pat Maroon before Game 3, in which he contributed an aim to the onslaught. “They have not seen our pleasant. So we are excited. Hopefully, we will show them our best this night.”
After forty mins, they showed something close to it. But there’s nonetheless 20 minutes extra and the Avalanche are one of the few groups that could bridge a 4-goal gap. — Greg Wyshynski
Colorado down huge through
Jared Bednar didn’t hesitate. When the Lightning took a five-2 lead past the halfway factor of the second one, Darcy Kuemper became out after allowing five dreams on 21 pictures. Pavel Francouz got the nod.
It needed to be accomplished.
Kuemper become sharp early within the first duration however had emerged as a legal responsibility. He could not arise to the Lightning’s stress, and Colorado (possibly no longer coincidentally) wasn’t playing with self-belief in front of him.
This changed into the first recreation in a while that Kuemper had virtually been referred to as upon to step up. Tampa Bay trailed the Cup Final 2-0 and all of us knew a pushback changed into coming. The Avalanche hasn’t faced a whole lot of adversity of overdue and Kuemper, who saw the most effective 16 photographs in Game 2, failed to deal with it well.
Granted, Colorado isn’t always doing a good deal to assist either in their netminders. The Lightning has flipped the script from Game 2 and is triumphing in the races and battles. They’re beating Colorado at its own sport. And Andrei Vasilevskiy appears locked in again. That would possibly also be worse for the Avalanche than seeing their personal starter war Shilton
Lightning within the lead through one
For a great deal of it, the Lightning’s first length very an awful lot felt like survival in place of an assertive response to the Avalanche’s 2-0 collection lead. They needed Andrei Vasilevskiy’s toe store on J.T. Compher around 4 mins into the game. They wanted the NHL Situation Room to take Valeri Nichushkin’s floater goal off the board way to an offside. They needed a cool “no shot” aim via Anthony Cirelli to slide past Darcy Kuemper into the internet for the first purpose because of the second length of Game 1.
But then, in a flash, they regarded just like the Lightning again. Ondrej Palat stealing the % from a Devon Toews skip. Nikita Kucherov draws defenders to him within the offensive area. Steven Stamkos putting in place Palat for a goal to make it 2-1, because the unsung winger notched a point in his 9th directly playoff domestic game. And Vasilevskiy preserving the lead against extra Colorado strain, because the Avs had 14 photographs on goal in the length.
The Lightning are 6-1 after they lead after one length. More importantly, they did not path via a couple of desires after the primary 10 minutes of a sport in this series. Small victories. — Wyshynski
Avalanche fall in the back of
Valeri Nichushkin thought he scored the sport’s first purpose on a trade-up shot that beat Andrei Vasilevskiy early within the first length.
It turned into Tampa Bay who’d be getting the exchange.
The Lightning effectively challenged the play as offside, taking the wind out of Colorado’s sails in what were a body basically advised by way of Tampa Bay.
It didn’t final long, although. Colorado is as resilient a team as you may locate and confirmed it once more in weathering both Tampa Bay’s preliminary push and their early electricity play threat. Not handiest did the Avalanche hold the Lightning off, in addition, they drew a penalty. Gabriel Landeskog scored on the ensuing man benefit to turn the tides on Tampa Bay.
That becomes the 9th-directly unanswered aim scored via Colorado in this collection.
It changed into a nine-minute stretch that confirmed the excellence of Colorado: Depth, fortitude, expertise, identification.
The Avalanche will want greater of those segments because the night unfolds. They were given sloppy because the duration wore on. And it turned into the Lightning who took benefit with a pair of desires. Colorado hasn’t had to face an awful lot of adversity of past due. Between the overturned purpose and trailing this Cup Final for the first time, how will they control a real project now? — Shilton