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Quick Strikes: GAME DAY! Last night the Flyers took one back, will the Devils do it tonight?

The Tampa Bay Lightning need to keep the Devils out of the series.

New Jersey Devils v Tampa Bay Lightning - Game One Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images

The Bolts

Yesterday, Geo took a look at Game 1 between the Tampa Bay Lightning and the New Jersey Devils and wrote up his thoughts. He wants to see more from the top line. [Raw Charge]

It was good to see Cooper putting the first line out there at the end of the game with the Devils pulling Kinkaid for the extra attacker. Kucherov made a really nice stick handling move after stealing a pass to step around a defender and skated down the ice to get the empty net goal.

But I’d like to see that line be more assertive in the offensive zone. Miller is supposed to provide some of that for the line, but it didn’t shine through very well. On the other hand, it seemed like they were playing a lot against Brian Boyle’s line. We all know that Boyle is a defensive stalwart, so perhaps that explained a bit why the line was getting shut down so much.

Tonight, Tampa Riverwalk has a lot going on outside of the arena — go check it out.

Three Takeaways and Three Potential Adjustments After the Devils’ Game 1 Loss. [All About the Jersey]

This might feel a little bit like shifting around deck chairs on the Titanic, but the fourth line got steamrolled last night and the second line was not much better, save for the beautiful Maroon pass that should have been buried by Zacha in the first period. I think I’d bring in Jesper Bratt in Game 2, slotting him in on one of those lines, with Brian Gibbons, who I thought had a rough game, potentially being cycled out. Bratt can capably take on Gibbons’ PK time if need be and he offers a little bit of a potential different skill set on that bottom line.

ESPN Roundtable: We’d like a do-over on a few of our playoff predictions -- such as the Eastern Conference champs. [ESPN]

It’s one game, and the Leafs aren’t going to just wilt away. But -- hoo boy -- do the Bruins look like a team built for the long haul, built for the playoffs and built to hoist a Stanley Cup when this marathon breaks the tape.

Can the Lightning’s scoring depth overwhelm New Jersey? It did in Game 1. [Tampa Bay Times]

“A lot of the guys spoke to them. Part of moving into this was, ‘Hey, let’s pass the experience on. Let’s pass the wisdom on of what’s worked and what hasn’t.’ This is just one game. Who knows how (Game 2 is) going to go? There’s emotional swings throughout games, throughout series. It’s one those, you can’t get too high, you can’t get too low. You have to keep grinding. For one day it was good.”

Why Tampa Bay’s second line was so effective in Devils’ Game 1 loss [NorthJersey.com]

The shutdown third line of Blake Coleman, Travis Zajac and Stefan Noesen can’t play against two lines, so Hall and his linemates, Nico Hischier and Kyle Palmieri, are going to have to find a way to neutralize them and be able to possess the puck.

“They’re very good players. They’re fast, they’re tenacious, they’re strong on the puck and they’re all real smart, heady, crafty players,” Hynes said. “They play both sides of the puck really well. The combination of the three of them, those are all real high-end quality players but I think the way they compete and their hockey sense really helps them out.”

Great words from Stamkos. Tony Cirelli makes his playoff presence felt immediately for Lightning. [Tampa Bay Times]

”He’s been such a reliable player at every level, but to have it come so natural at this level for how young he is, is pretty impressive,” Stamkos said. “He stepped in and did everything and more than the coaching staff has asked from him. He’s going to be a huge part of this team for a long time, but he’s going to be a huge part of us in these playoffs.

”I thought he played outstanding (Thursday). He’s just kind of carefree in terms of not being nervous, of not feeling pressure. He just goes out there, he plays a certain way and he plays that way.”

Bigger than Rivalry

Winnipeg native Jonathan Toews travelled over to his neighbours in Humboldt, Saskatchewan bringing support and gifts. [Second City Hockey]

Funerals for three victims, Adam Herold, Glen Doerksen and Jacob Leicht, will be held Friday. Earlier in the day, Toews attended Leicht’s funeral.

“I can’t for one second pretend that I know what it’s like for anyone close to this event, to know what they’re going through what they’re feeling,” Toews told Canadian news outlet CBC.

The Prospects

Watch- Interview with Syracuse Crunch goalie Connor Ingram and his connection to Humboldt [CNYcentral.com]

Ingram, 21, is a goalie for the Syracuse Crunch. In his younger years, he played on the U-15 and U-13 teams in Humboldt. The same travel team (but different age group) that was involved in that horrific team bus crash in Saskatchewan.

Syracuse tops Utica in OT to hit 100-point mark for third time in history. [Syracuse.com]

Carter Verhaeghe scored the game-winner late in the overtime frame to help the Syracuse Crunch top the Utica Comets, 2-1, and hit the 100-point mark for the third time in franchise history Friday at the Adirondack Bank Center.

The Game

Early in the night, Toronto lost its marbles when news that Nazem Kadri was suspended for three games for his hit on Tommy Wingels was released. Brad Marchand has not yet been suspended for being himself. “What I’m looking at is we got an opportunity to play tomorrow. And it’s our opportunity to play in the [Stanley Cup] Playoffs. Playoffs are real simple: If you win, you play again. If you don’t, you go home. We want to keep playing. You spend all this time preparing and working. Now we’ve got to show it.” [NHL.com]

The Philadelphia Flyers got their revenge on the Pittsburgh Penguins for their 7-0 embarassment on Wednesday night with an outstanding (they got out-shot to holy hell) 5-1 win on the road. [SB Nation]

A big Game 2 victory was exactly what Claude Giroux and the Flyers needed after getting dismantled by the Penguins in Game 1. It certainly wasn’t the prettiest win, but all that matters to the Flyers is that the series is now tied heading into Game 3 in Philadelphia on Sunday afternoon. All that matters now is which team wins three more games first.

The Winnipeg Jets are truly and utterly terrifying. They beat the Minnesota Wild 4-1 in a game that wasn’t close as soon as the puck dropped. [Sportsnet]

There is something solid, something genuine about this Winnipeg team, a quality that Canadians may just be beginning to realize as they tune in to Jets hockey in earnest for the first time. Winnipeg has a way of owning the puck, like the big kid at the outdoor rink who could steal your puck and keep it for as long as he wanted to.

It may have taken five periods of hockey for the Vegas Golden Knights to defeat the LA Kings 2-1, but the result felt inevitable the entire time. [Knights on Ice]

But by the time the second overtime rolled around, both teams were exhausted. Anze Kopitarled all forwards in ice time with 38:54, and defensemen Alec Martinez and Oscar Fantenbergled all players with 44:51 and 41:03, respectively. For the Knights, William Karlsson and Marchcessault both played more than 34 minutes, and Nate Schmidt led the team with 37:19.

Highlight of the Night: Goalies are weird.