Make us your home page
Instagram

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Penguins expect Lightning to come out strong in Game 4

Tampa Bay Lightning goalie Andrei Vasilevskiy (88) is beaten for the Penguins fourth goal during the third period of Wednesday's (5/18/16) game between the Tampa Bay Lightning and the Pittsburgh Penguins for game three of the Eastern Conference Finals at the Amalie Arena in Tampa. Celebrating, at right, are Pittsburgh Penguins defenseman Justin Schultz (4), Pittsburgh Penguins center Sidney Crosby (87), Pittsburgh Penguins left wing Chris Kunitz (14) and Pittsburgh Penguins center Evgeni Malkin (71). DOUGLAS R. CLIFFORD   |   Times

Tampa Bay Lightning goalie Andrei Vasilevskiy (88) is beaten for the Penguins fourth goal during the third period of Wednesday's (5/18/16) game between the Tampa Bay Lightning and the Pittsburgh Penguins for game three of the Eastern Conference Finals at the Amalie Arena in Tampa. Celebrating, at right, are Pittsburgh Penguins defenseman Justin Schultz (4), Pittsburgh Penguins center Sidney Crosby (87), Pittsburgh Penguins left wing Chris Kunitz (14) and Pittsburgh Penguins center Evgeni Malkin (71). DOUGLAS R. CLIFFORD | Times

TAMPA — The Penguins expected the Lightning to start strong Wednesday night and the Lightning did. And, according to Sidney Crosby, the Penguins expect the Lightning to do the same Friday when the teams return to the ice for Game 4 of the Eastern Conference final.

That the visiting Penguins hold a 2-1 lead in the best-of-seven series matters little, Crosby said.

"It's one game," Crosby said after Wednesday's 4-2 victory at Amalie Arena. "We played really well. We deserved to win. (But) you expect them to come out hard (Friday)."

The Lightning should play with a little desperation Friday, knowing that heading back to Pittsburgh for Sunday's Game 5 down 3-1 is not ideal.

This is only the second time the Lightning has trailed in a series during this postseason.

"We've been in three playoffs together, and we've been every different way — up two, down two, up 2-1, down 2-1 —nothing we haven't seen before," Lightning coach Jon Cooper said. "When you're playing in the playoffs, you have to have a really short memory regardless if you're playing well or not. That's it. Turn the page tonight, and tomorrow's a new day. Sun's coming up, I think, and we'll be ready to go."

They Lightning has been outplayed during the last two-games, with the deeper, faster Penguins holding an 89-49 edge in shots on goal.

Lightning goalie Andrei Vasilevskiy, filling in for the injured Ben Bishop, has played well. But there is only so much a goalie can do without help from his defense.

Whether it's Vasilevskiy in net Friday or Bishop, this much remains the same: a Lightning win and it's a best of three-game series. A Penguins win and the Lightning are in trouble.

"It's first to four. We know that," Penguins center Nick Bonino said. "We lost the first game and there was no panic here. They're down 2-1 and I'm sure there's not a lot of panic over there. These are two good teams — that's a team with a lot of playoff experience, and we're going to expect their best Friday."

Penguins expect Lightning to come out strong in Game 4 05/19/16 [Last modified: Friday, May 20, 2016 12:12am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Rays at Yankees, 7:05 p.m. Thursday, New York

    The Heater

    Tonight: at Yankees

    7:05, Yankee Stadium, New York

    TV/radio: Fox Sports Florida; 620-AM, 680-AM (Spanish)

    Tampa Bay Rays starting pitcher Chris Archer (22) throwing in the first inning of the game between the Texas Rangers and the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla. on Saturday, July 22, 2017.
  2. Roger Mooney's takeaways from Wednesday's Rays-Orioles game

    The Heater

    It is going to get interesting tonight when the Rays begin a four-game series against the Yankees in New York. The Rays feel they are good enough to win the East Division. These next four games and the four that follow in Houston will be a good measuring stick.

  3. Jones: Alex Cobb proves again why he's Rays' stopper, no matter how long he's here

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG

    If a team hopes to hang around the pennant race, they better have an ace. A stopper. A pitcher they can count on every fifth day to stop the bleeding, keep a winning streak going or flat-out win a game that a team flat-out needs to win.

    Rays starting pitcher Alex Cobb (53) throwing the first inning. [WILL VRAGOVIC   |   Times]
  4. Twice the talent: IMG football expands to two teams this fall

    Footballpreps

    BRADENTON — When IMG Academy fielded its first varsity football team in 2013, there were 51 players on the roster. Since then, the roster has nearly tripled. With no junior varsity it was difficult for some to find playing time, and players do not come to IMG to sit the bench.

    The solution? Start another …

    DL Tre’von Riggins 
(6-4, 240) is a  Lakewood transfer.
  5. Rays power way to 5-1 win over Orioles on eve of crucial road trip

    The Heater

    St. PETERSBURG — The Rays didn't get many hits in the early going Wednesday, but they got a couple that went a long way and that was enough to beat the Orioles, 5-1.

    Rays right fielder Steven Souza Jr. (20) hugs catcher Jesus Sucre (45) after Souza's solo home run in the seventh inning. [WILL VRAGOVIC   |   Times]