Throughout the Stanley Cup playoffs we’ll be keeping track of all the action around the league, and bringing you all of the results in one place.
No. 2 Tampa Bay Lightning vs. No. 4 Boston Bruins
We had a couple of potential elimination games on deck last night, and we kicked things off with the Lightning and the Bruins, as the Lightning looked to punch their ticket early to the Conference Final. The first period saw both sides trading some good chances, but nothing came of them somehow, and it took until the second period for anyone to break through. Though the Bruins had shown some good jump early in this game, it was Tampa who got on the board first with a goal by Ondrej Palat, as his hot streak continued. The Bruins were able to tie things up later in the period, with a power play goal from David Pastrnak, and we had a game again. The Lightning jumped back out to the lead in the third periodwith a goal from Anthony Cirelli midway through the period, and things were looking a little dicey for the Bruins, but David Krejci was able to tie things up and force overtime,
And overtime sure was a wild ride. The Bruins positively dominated for most of the first overtime period, but Andrei Vasilevskiy came up huge for the Lightning, and with those efforts was able to maintain the tie and force a second overtime. And this one saw the momentum starting to shift back in Tampa Bay’s favor. And despite the Bruins continuing to get some good looks, it would be Victor Hedman that broke through just past the 14 minute mark in the second period, sealing the game and series win for the Lightning.
No. 2 Colorado Avalanche vs. No. 3 Dallas Stars
While many of us were probably still tuned into overtime in the first game, things were under way with the Avalanche looking to get back to their game and push this series to at least six games. And man oh man did they ever do that. In the first period alone, the Avalanche got goals from Pierre-Edouard Bellemare to open things up, and then in the span of under four minutes, Andre Burakovsky, Nathan MacKinnon, Nazem Kadri, and Mikko Rantanen. The Stars had some response in them, and they got two back in the second period, care of goals by Joe Pavelski and Miro Heiskanen, but Burakovsky then went and got one back again for the Avalanche before we hit the second intermission.
And the third period of this one really felt like it was descending into chaos in a lot of ways. We had some normal chippiness and lack of discipline leading to penalties early. And then about midway through, Blake Comeau was given a ten minute misconduct and tossed from the game. And then Pavelski was tossed for mouthing off to the refs from the bench. And then Jamie Benn scored on the power play with 5:48 to go, making it a 6-3 game. And when we came back from commercial, they pulled the goalie for the extra attacker. They got a couple of good chances, but in the end they weren’t able to get anything past Hutchinson, and the Avalache were able to hold on for the win and stave off elimination.