How often have we heard Bobby “The Chief” Taylor say, “That move was too cute. Too much passing, not enough shooting”? In this case, Valtteri Filppula must’ve listened to his words. There was no need for this dagger-in-the-heart goal in the third period of last Saturday’s game vs. the Senators, but Filppula delivered it anyway.
In the first period, after a Senator fanned on a puck, Nikita Nesterov was quick enough to spot a completely undefended Jonathan Drouin along the right wall. He sent the puck forward, and Drouin went racing on the breakaway. Craig Anderson successfully defended that shot attempt, but the seeds of the idea were planted.
In the third, with the Lightning up 3-1, Brayden Point found a free puck in the defensive zone, and sent it straight to Filppula, who was hanging out in the very same undefended spot along the right wall. Filppula was even more poorly defended than Drouin, and used the time and space to gracefully swoop in front of the crease, dekeing from forehand to backhand to get Anderson to guard his 5-hole. Then he sent it in over Anderson’s right shoulder — a beauty. Go ahead and watch Filppula shoot first: