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Lightning Round: Five Game Sevens to be played in the NHL Playoffs over the weekend

The second best result since 1992!

Tampa Bay Lightning v Toronto Maple Leafs - Game Five Photo by Kevin Sousa/NHLI via Getty Images

The Game 7 is the gem of playoff series in any sport and NHL fans are blessed enough to get five of them over this weekend. Two more series are going to Game 7 after Friday night, raising the total amount of Game 7s in this year’s first round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs to five games — the second best result since 1992 in a single round, when six series were decided in Game 7 on Division Semifinals stage. This is also already more than any of two previous Stanley Cup Playoffs.

Meanwhile, the Tampa Bay Lightning have arrived in Toronto for their Game 7. The Lightning are 6-3 in Game 7s in their franchise history. Most recently the Lightning played against the New York Islanders in Game 7 of the 2021 NHL Stanley Cup Semifinals, when they defeated their opponent 1-0.

Lightning Links

In his new Morning After Thoughts article, Matt discusses what makes the Lightning a back-to-back championship team [Raw Charge]

The thing all Lightning fans should do is sit back and simply enjoy how this team moves forward. This core group of players is the greatest in franchise history and one of the greatest in salary cap history (you can only argue two franchises are ahead of them). When it’s all said and done, history will be very kind to this era of the Tampa Bay Lightning. However, that doesn’t mean this team is dead, it doesn’t mean this team can’t compete, and it surely doesn’t mean this team can’t terrify its opponents with their never-say-die attitude. That is who the Tampa Bay Lightning are—champions, some of the greatest champions of this era, who will make you scratch and claw for every centimeter of ice.

Yesterday’s Games

Florida Panthers 4, Washington Capitals 3 — FLA wins 4-2

A former Tampa Bay Lightning forward Carter Verhaeghe scored a game-winning goal for the Panthers at 2:46 in overtime of Game 6 of their series against the Capitals, earning them a first playoff series win in 26 years. Claude Giroux led his team with 3 (1+2) points in this game, goaltender Sergei Bobrovsky made 34 stops to grab a victory. The Capitals are eliminated in the first round for the fourth time in four years.

New York Rangers 5, Pittsburgh Penguins 3 — series tied 3-3

The Rangers avoided elimination in the second game in a row, after a comeback win against the Pens on Friday night. The Rangers trailed 0-2, but managed to tie the game in the second period. Mike Zibanejad scored his first two goals of the playoffs, adding two assists in this game. Chris Kreider also scored two goals, including a game-winning goal in the third period. Igor Shesterkin made 31 saves in this game and recorded an assist on Kreider’s first goal.

Calgary Flames 2, Dallas Stars 4 — series tied 3-3

The series between Dallas and Calgary has already been one of the closest in terms of scoring and logically will be decided in Game 7 as well. On Friday, the Stars defeated the Flames 4-2, thanks to goals by Roope Hintz, Michael Raffl, Miro Heiskanen and Tyler Seguin. Jake Oettinger made 36 saves.

Today’s Games

Tampa Bay Lightning @ Toronto Maple Leafs — series tied 3-3

7:00 PM ET; TBS, CBC, TVAS, SN, BSSUN

Boston Bruins @ Carolina Hurricanes — series tied 3-3

4:30 PM ET; ESPN, TVAS, SN360, SNE, SNW, SNP

Los Angeles Kings @ Edmonton Oilers — series tied 3-3

10:00 PM ET; ESPN, CBC, TVAS, SN, BSSC