Lightning pepper New York Rangers with 51 shots for a 3-2 win
The Eastern Conference Final shifted to Amalie Arena in Tampa Bay with the Lightning looking to get back into this series.
Expectations were that Tampa was going to throw the kitchen sink at the New York Rangers and that’s exactly what they did. Igor Shesterkin was completely under siege after seeing 51 shots including 19 in the final frame.
In the end, it was on Tampa’s last shot that Ondrej Palat scored the game-winner. The play was off a beautiful feed by Nikita Kucherov with just 42 seconds left.
“The third period wasn’t good enough,” Adam Fox said. “We were on our heels the whole time and eventually they were going to get one and they did.”
Recap: Lighting 3 vs Rangers 2
The Lightning fired 15 shots in the first, 17 in the second, and 19 in the third off with Shesterkin being the main reason this game was close. His biggest save came when Kucherov jumped out of the box for a breakaway that kept it scoreless after one.
In the second period, Corey Perry would slash Shesterkin and Mika Zibanejad converted of the first goal of the contest.
Adam Fox made the feed to the circle for a one-timer from the Mika Zone. His blast was his 10th goal of these playoffs. It was also his sixth power play goal which tied Adam Graves for most in a single postseason (1996).
Riley Nash then took a run at Shesterkin drawing an interference call.
The Rangers power play went to work with another Zibanejad blast from his sweet spot. Andrei Vasilevsky made the stop, but Chris Kreider put home the rebound to put his team up 2-0.
For Kreider it was his 10th goal of the playoffs and 34th of his career. That now ties the late great Rod Gilbert for the franchise record.
However, from that point on it was all Tampa.
First, Kucherov scored on the PP at the 10:50 mark to get Tampa started to feel it.
The Lightning then tied it just 1:22 into the third period with a huge blast by Steven Stamkos. He converted a nice cross-ice feed by Perry and Tampa was off to the races.
New York tired to weather the storm and had a golden opportunity when Zibanejad was high-sticked by Kucherov for a double minor.
Tampa was aggressive on the kill and eventually drew a tripping call on Jacob Trouba to kill any hopes the Rangers had to steal a win.
Eventually the Lightning were just too much with Palat scoring the winner with under a minute left.
“They were the better team overall,” Gerard Gallant said. “It was disappointing but we’ll move on to the next one.”
Ryan Strome was injured in the second period and was unable to return. The Rangers announced that he suffered a lower-body injury midway through the third period.
“We’ll know more tomorrow,” Gallant updated. “Hopefully he’s fine for the next one.”
- Igor Shesterkin was heroic in the loss stopping 48 of 51 shots
- Mika Zibanejad two points (1G – 1A) has 24 points in the playoffs
- Chris Kreider recorded his 10th goal of the postseason
- Artemi Panarin registered two assists
- The Kid Line was held off the scoresheet
Tomorrow (Monday, June 6): TBD
Next Game: Tuesday, June 7 at Tampa Bay Lightning – Game 4 (8:00 PM – TV: ESPN)
*Schedule subject to change
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