This series between the Tampa Bay Lightning and the Columbus Blue Jackets has felt like it’s dragged on for a long time, and yet it’s only been four games and eight days since it started. I guess that’s the reality of playing against the Blue Jackets (and a game with five overtimes), everything feels like a slog that never ends.
Despite the slowing of time the Lightning have the ability to eliminate the Blue Jackets and eliminate us from the anxiety and depression of a series dredging on against them. Game Four on Sunday may have given me a tad bit of overconfidence with how the Lightning were able to get ahead and stay ahead in a calm and cool fashion. They genuinely played well and the Blue Jackets really did look desperate and exhausted by the end. That’s not to say they can’t come back and win Game Five, but maybe they’ve been figured out?
I really want this series to end — because the Blue Jackets suck the joy out of hockey and I really miss some fun fire-wagon hockey — but if it doesn’t, the Lightning have Game 6 tomorrow in the second half of a back-to-back. This game is on “home ice”, let’s get it done!
Vegas have disposed of Chicago in five games, and are the first team able to put their feet up until next week. The third team in the West eliminated the 12th team in the West, who previously eliminated the fifth team in the West in Edmonton.
Washington escaped elimination last night with a comeback win over the Islanders. The Flyers have completely shut down the Canadiens and can eliminate them today on the second game of a back-to-back. Dallas and Calgary keep going back to back, but it’s Dallas this time who is on top after a pair of close wins this week.
Philadelphia Flyers 2, Montreal Canadiens 0 — PHI leading 3-1
The Habs have been shut out by Carter Hart for two straight games. I can’t imagine how their fans are still finding time to be snarky. Thanks for Sergachev, BTW. [Broad Street Hockey]
Dallas Stars 2, Calgary Flames 1 — DAL leads 3-2
“After a heroic comeback to tie the series up 2-2 in Game 4, the Dallas Stars are now leading the Calgary Flames for the first time all series after a 2-1 win in Game 5.” [Defending Big D]
Washington Capitals 3, New York Islanders 2 — NYI leads 3-1
The Caps escaped elimination off the back of Alex Ovechkin, who tied Gordie Howe and Sidney Crosby for 18th in all-time playoff scoring. [Japers Rink]
Vegas Golden Knights 4, Chicago 3 — VGK ELIMINATE CHI 4-1
I thought this game would be a sweep, but Chicago was able to win once so credit to them. Nevertheless, Vegas is the first time moving on and Chicago is the ninth team eliminated in these playoffs. Robin Lehner got the win against the team that traded him.
All the games today are for series with the higher seeded team up 3-1, except for Vancouver and St. Louis, who are tied heading into Game 5. We could see up to four teams eliminated by tomorrow.
Columbus Blue Jackets “@” Tampa Bay Lightning — Game 5 (TBL leads 3-1)
12pm ET, NBCSN, TVAS, SN, SUN, FS-O
Carolina Hurricanes “@” Boston Bruins — Game 5 (BOS leads 3-1)
4pm ET, NBCSN, TVAS, SN, NESN, FS-CR
Arizona Coyotes “@” Colorado Avalanche — Game 5 (COL leads 3-1)
5:30pm ET, NBCSN (JIP), NHLN, SN360, ALT, FS-A
Montreal Canadiens “@” Philadelphia Flyers — Game 5 (PHI leads 3-1)
8pm ET, NBCSN, CBC, TVAS, SNt, NBCSP
Vancouver Canucks “@” St. Louis Blues — Game 5 (series tied 2-2)
10:30pm ET, NBCSN, CBC, SN, MW
Who is getting eliminated today?
This poll is closed
Columbus Blue Jackets
Here’s a good preview of Game 5 by Bryan Burns. He talks about the team’s history when up 3-1 in a series and has quotes from the team on how prepared they are and how they’re feeling. [NHL dot com]
“Tampa Bay is 6-0 all-time when holding a 3-1 series lead. In five of those previous six series, the Lightning have ended it early in Game 5. The only time they didn’t was the aforementioned 2015 Eastern Conference Semifinal against Montreal when they dropped Game 5 on the road 2-1 but came home to win Game 6 by a 4-1 count and move on to the Eastern Conference Final.”
Yesterday, the Lightning and Syracuse Crunch announced that they have signed 6’7”, 225 lbs Nikita Pavlychev to an AHL contract. He signs “shortly” after 6’9” defenseman Oleg Sosunov was released from the organization. [Raw Charge]
“After finishing his USHL career, Pavlychev joined the Penn State University Nittany Lions. Over four seasons of NCAA hockey, he recorded 36 goals and 70 points in 137 games played. He was a Big 10 champion in 2016-17 and Penn State were the Regular Season Champions in 2019-20.”
As Tracey delightfully said in the Raw Charge office, “I feel like I’m watching adult recess.”
A thread of our guys playing not hockey:— Tampa Bay Lightning (@TBLightning) August 18, 2020
No discipline for a hit that got players suspended last playoffs.
The @NHLPlayerSafety clipped and reviewed hits by Dubois (boarding) on Killorn and Foligno on Sergachev from Game 4. But no hearing or supplemental discipline.— Joe Smith (@JoeSmithTB) August 18, 2020
Rest in Peace to Winnipeg Jets legend Dale Hawerchuk.
After an incredibly brave and difficult battle with cancer, our dad has passed away. My family is so proud of him and the way he fought. #HawerchukStrong pic.twitter.com/xZ1xcaqAOv— Eric Hawerchuk (@EricHawerchuk) August 18, 2020