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Lightning Round: Bolts look to even series against Boston Bruins

A series tied at one heading into a back-to-back is a lot better than being down two games.

Boston Bruins v Tampa Bay Lightning - Game Two”n
April 30, 2018; Tampa Bay, FL, USA; Tampa Bay Lightning right wing Ryan Callahan (24) celebrates a goal on Boston Bruins goaltender Tuukka Rask (40) by centre Tyler johnson (9) as Boston Bruins defenseman Torey Krug (47) looks on during the second period of game two of the second round of the 2018 Stanley Cup Playoffs at AMALIE Arena.

In 2018, when the Tampa Bay Lightning fell down 0-1 to the Boston Bruins in their first round series, the Lightning came back at home to win a decisive Game 2 by the score of 4-2. The Bolts didn’t lose again, taking out the Bruins in five games. The two teams are pretty much the same then to now, so here’s to history repeating itself!

Unfortunately, I can’t say the Lightning are undefeated in Game 2’s against the Bruins, because they did lose the second game of the Conference Finals series to the Bruins in 2011. The Lightning would eventually lose in seven games and the Bruins would go on to win the Cup. That said, the rosters for both teams are dramatically different so I don’t put as much weight into it.

So can the Lightning do it? I hope so. This team has done a really good job of bouncing back this season and again in these playoffs. They were built for this series, and even without Steven Stamkos, they have a damn good chance at pulling out the win. The Brayden Point line has been fantastic, the Anthony Cirelli line needs to do more but I think they can, the third line centred by Yanni Gourde has been awesome to watch, and the defense is strong. I have a little worry creeping in about Andrei Vasilevskiy, but I’m trying my best to ignore it, ok!

Here’s hoping tonight’s the first of four straight wins.

Yesterday’s Games

New York Islanders 4, Philadelphia Flyers 0 — NYI leads 1-0
Damn, the Islanders suck in the worst way. Fug Smuckers. [Lighthouse Hockey]

Dallas Stars 5, Colorado Avalanche 2 — DAL leads 2-0
The first series to hit two games, and it looks like the magic in Colorado has worn off. They bullied Arizona out of the bubble, but without Erik Johnson and Philipp Grubauer, they look mighty pedestrian beyond the Nathan MacKinnon line and the power play. The Stars are shutting them down. [Mile High Hockey]

Today’s Games

Boston Bruins “@” Tampa Bay Lightning — BOS leads 1-0
7pm ET, NBCSN, CBC, TVAS, SN

Vancouver Canucks “@” Vegas Golden Knights — VGK leads 1-0
9:45pm ET, NBCSN, CBC, TVAS, SN

Lightning Links

Here are some quotes from yesterday’s practice in Toronto. The team is expecting to just ride Vasy, and Nikita Kucherov is stepping up.

Poor Avs, this was the eventual game-winning goal.

Early talks are underway over how the NHL is going to run a regular season. My guess is they put the all the divisions in their own bubbles and make Tampa Bay play Boston, Florida, Buffalo, Detroit, Toronto, Ottawa, and Montreal 10 times each. Easy 70 game season that totally won’t melt everyone’s minds.

Alex Ovechkin has been named the NHL 21 cover athlete.

The Detroit Red Wings have signed RFA Robby Fabbri to a two-year, $2.95 million AAV contract.

This was really cool. Evolving Hockey and Cap Friendly teamed up to provide advanced stats for the salary cap website. This was the one thing at the top of my mind that I was hoping would be added to Cap Friendly. I think it’s great!