How long does it take the Tampa Bay Lightning to score on a power play? About four and a half minutes, which was enough to do it in Game 4 against the Boston Bruins. Victor Hedman managed to send it home through traffic for the third goal of the game, and helped Tampa extend its power play goal streak to an actual second game.
The final 3-1 victory against the Bruins contained just one bitter moment — Nick Ritchie careened into Yanni Gourde midway through the second in a late hit, causing his head and shoulder to impact the wall. It took a moment for him to get up, and fans of both teams held their breath until Gourde skated off of his own accord. Even the refs couldn’t deny the penalty, which is how Bolts ended up with the 5-minute power play on the corresponding 5-minute major for Ritchie.
Despite how bad it looked with Gourde remaining almost motionless on the ice after the hit, he did return to play in the third period. Hopefully he is actually ok and maybe just had the wind knocked out of him and isn’t toughing out an injury. Gourde has been a huge part of the depth scoring for the Lightning, with three goals and six points in nine games since the start of the Columbus Blue Jackets series. He’s also gotten a lot of trust and ice time from Jon Cooper, with 19:49 and 21:03 in the previous two games while the Lightning went with just 11 forwards.
The Lightning really had to work to survive in the third period. They opened the period with a 1:03 penalty kill after Zach Bogosian was penalized at the end of the second period. Before that penalty expired, Blake Coleman went to the box, resulting in a 10 second 5-on-3. Schenn also went to the box for hooking at five minutes into the period, and that penalty resulting in Boston’s only goal of the game.
Staying out of the box has been important for the Lighting, and despite that march to the box, they did well, especially in the latter part of the third period when they needed to avoid giving the Bruins any spark after allowing the first goal. The biggest concern was also that the Lightning would turtle in the third period. Boston was winning the possession game through the first two periods at 5v5, but the Lightning were able to control the puck much more effectively in the third period, and when adjusted for score, ended up swinging the possession numbers slightly in their favor.
Andrei Vasilevskiy was a big part of the game. The first period wasn’t especially tough for him, but the second and third period saw the Bruins generating more dangerous chances especially on the power play. Vasilevskiy wasn’t able to get his first career playoff shutout, but I like the Lightning’s odds to win in any game where he only allows one goal.
Cassidy on Yanni Gourde: "Good player. Clever player, obviously. Got them on the power play for five minutes. Finished the game with no problems."— Ty Anderson (@_TyAnderson) August 29, 2020
Here are the goals of the game.
Palat’s first goal:
Palat’s game-winning goal: