Two former Southeast Division rivals squared off in game one of the Eastern Conference Final this evening, and it was the Washington Capitals, who drew first blood as they defeated the Tampa Bay Lightning 4-2 to take a 1-0 series lead. It was an uncharacteristically sloppy game from the Lightning, and one that was markedly worse than the series opener against Boston in the last round.
Want to keep track of all the milestones the Bolts might hit on their way to the Cup? Well, GeoFitz4 did the work so you don’t have to. [Raw Charge]
The Tampa Bay Lightning have had some players moving up the franchise record boards during this playoff run. Entering the Eastern Conference Final, Lightning players have already set some franchise numbers. Nikita Kucherov passed Vincent Lecavalier for second in points, and goals. Victor Hedman passed Martin St. Louis for the top spot in assists. But there are some more that can be broken, perhaps even before this series is over.
Poll, who wins the series? Reminder, there is only one correct answer. [Raw Charge]
Of course a similar poll on another site is going to yield conflicting results. It’s all very technical and I can’t get into all of it for the sake of a layperson, but suffice to say that a computer is used, so you know it’s inherently scientific. It’s not the polls themselves that are “bs”, it’s the subjective opinions. Now, dear sir and/or madam, I would politely request that you please desist with the disparagement and apply that sobriquet to things that actually are “bs”, such as Goalie Interference and Jack Edwards.
Allovimo gave a teary-eyed goodbye to the 2017-18 Syracuse Crunch. An abrupt disappearance in the playoffs won’t dim the light of a great season that was led by the kids of all people. [Raw Charge]
In nearly every way, the 2017-18 regular season was the best in Crunch history. The team ended the season with a .658 points percentage, their highest ever. To put that number into perspective, last season’s team, the team that stormed the league as underdogs, exceeded expectations, and forced their way into the Calder Cup final, ended 7th in team history with a points percentage of .592.
Alex Barre-Boulet, Taylor Raddysh, and Boris Katchouk all dropped their Game 5’s at home on Friday night, meaning the Blainville-Boisbriand Armada, and Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds are both down 2-3 in their series’ and are going to have to win a game on the road in order to force a Game 7 for the QMJHL, and OHL titles, respectively.
Barre-Boulet had no points and was a -2 in his 5-3 loss. [Boxscore]
#QPlayoffs | With both teams playing some 4-on-4 hockey, Alexander Katerinakis of the @ArmadaBLB caps off his breakaway with this beautiful goal to cut the @ABTitan lead to 3-2. pic.twitter.com/9C3aEHEJ9C— QMJHL (@QMJHL) May 12, 2018
Raddysh assisted on Katchouk’s power play goal in the third during a late push that helped bring a 4-1 scoreline back to 4-3. Otherwise, the Bolt twins didn’t have a great night. [Boxscore]
The news that commanded the day was the Toronto Maple Leafs hiring a new General Manager. Soo native Kyle Dubas is now running the team four years after initially being hired by President Brendan Shanahan as an assistant GM. [Pension Plan Puppets]
Hardev: The moment I heard the news I started laughing to myself. We knew this was going to happen. The team told us as much that this was going to happen. It’s just hilarious that no one believed them. Gotta love those “sources in the game.”
Please, Habs. Trade Pacioretty!! [Habs Eye on the Prize]
Moving a major piece of a team’s core is not a task that is easily handled. Trying to find the best possible scenario and come out ahead in said trade is a monumental task.
The Montreal Canadiens now find themselves in that situation once again. Just two years after trading franchise defenceman P.K. Subban, the team may be moving on from their captain, Max Pacioretty.
Highlight of the Night: Alex Ovechkin is good (but we’re better).