Lightning Round: Victor Hedman returns to the line-up
After missing Game Two of their opening round series against the Toronto Maple Leafs, Tampa Bay Lightning defenseman Victor Hedman returned to the line-up for Game Three. While he didn't record a point, the former Norris Trophy winner didn't seem to be overly hampered by whatever ailment kept him out of the line-up.
Hedman played 32:35, second only to Mikhail Sergachev's 37:27 and recorded one shot on net, one hit, three blocked shots and one takeaway. Paired with Nick Perbix the duo was on the ice against the Ryan O'Reilly line for most of the night. While he was only credited with one shot on goal he did have 11 shot attempts and 5 individual scoring attempts, both numbers led the Lightning blueline and only Nikita Kucherov attempted more shots.
It was a strong return to action for the future hall of famer and the Lightning defense seemed a lot more structured in their own zone for most of the night. While he didn't have an assist on the play, his pass through the neutral zone sparked the play that led to Anthony Cirelli's game-tying goal in the first period.
He'll be able to rest a little bit after his long game as the Lightning announced that they will have the day off today. It's doubtful that he's at 100%, but then again who is at this point of the season? Even if he's only at 60-70%, he's still one of the best defensemen in the league.
Lightning lose in overtime, 4-3 [Raw Charge]
That could have gone a lot better. The Lightning did pretty much everything they needed to do except win the game.
Morgan Reilly: Hit on Brayden Point was clean [Tampa Bay Times]
When asked about it after the game he said, "I thought the play was clean. Obviously he goes in hard and I understand his teammates being frustrated by that but, I mean, I thought the play was alright." While he was initially hit with a 5-minute major, the call was rescinded after a review by the officials. Thus he was able to be on the ice to score the overtime winner. Funny how that happens.
As for Point, he did return to the game following this hit:
It's always dangerous to try and diagnose injuries from the safety of a TV screen, but an untrained diagnosis would be something to do with his ribs. We've seen players play through that type of injury in the past, but it'll all have to do with his ability to handle the discomfort and if continuing to play will worsen the injury.
Syracuse defeats Rochester, 3-0 [The AHL]
The Lightning's AHL affiliate is on the verge of eliminating the Rochester Americans following a 3-0 win last night. Ryan Jones and Gage Goncalves (2x) provided the offense while Max Lagace stopped 18 shots for his first career playoff shutout. The series resumes on Friday in Rochester.
NHL / Hockey News
Vegas Golden Knights 5-4 (2OT) over Winnipeg Jets - Vegas leads 2-1
After Winnipeg stormed back with three third period goals, Michael Amadio broke Jets's fans hearts 3:40 into the second overtime. Even worse for Winnipeg, Josh Morrissey suffered a lower-body injury and will be out for the rest of the series.
New Jersey Devils 2-1 (OT) over New York Rangers - New York leads 2-1
Akira Schmid stopped 35 shots in his first NHL playoff game and Dougie Hamilton scored the game-winner midway through overtime as the Devils won their first game of the series.
Colorado Avalanche 6-4 over Seattle Kraken - Colorado leads 2-1
The defending Stanley Cup champs scored three times in the third period to break open a tied game. Nathan MacKinnon scored twice including one on this fantastic shift:
The Ageless One is not done with hockey just yet. It looks like Jaromir Jagr will be back for one more year. Jagr recorded 14 points (5 goals, 9 assists) in 26 games with Kladno last year.