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The Lightning were held scoreless until the final minute of a 2-1 loss to the Islanders Sunday at Amalie Arena, slipping into a one-game deficit in their best-of-seven Stanley Cup semifinal series.
Mathew Barzal scored late in the second period and Ryan Pulock early in the third to give New York a 2-0 lead.
Brayden Point scored on the power play with 53.7 seconds remaining to put Tampa Bay on the board. Andrei Vasilevskiy had been pulled for an extra attacker, giving the Lightning a 6-on-4 advantage.
Islanders goalie Semyon Varlamov stopped 30 of the 31 shots he faced. Vasilevskiy had 29 saves on 31 shots.
Here’s how it happened:
Lightning will start the period with 1:23 remaining on the Palmieri penalty
Hedman blocks Pageau shot from the high slot
Cernak shot from low in the right circle saved by Varlamov
Islanders kill the penalty
Maroon backcheck thwarts Barzal rebound opportunity
Barzal leaves the ice after blocking a shot with top of knee
Goodrow shot blocked in front
Killorn shot saved by Varlamov’s right pad
Beauvillier shot saved by Vasilevskiy
ISLANDERS GOAL. Ryan Pulock beats Vasilevskiy with shot from the right point. Islanders 2, Lightning 0.
Sergachev inexplicably passes back to Pageau off the rush in the Islanders zone
Adam Pelech chases Ondrej Palat off the puck on a potential breakaway
Mayfield steals the puck from Palat
Lightning pull Vasilevskiy in favor of an extra attacker
Palmieri clears the puck
Islanders ice the puck with 1:51 to play
Brock Nelson penalized for cross-checking Kucherov, and the Lightning will have a two-man advantage with Vasilevskiy pulled
Stamkos shot blocked
Hedman shot deflected in front
LIGHTNING GOAL! Point scores on the power play shortside high over the glove off Varlamov’s shoulder with 53.7 seconds remaining. Islanders 2, Lightning 1.
Islanders ice the puck with 23 seconds left
Kucherov shot misses the net
(Islanders win 2-1)
David Savard give-and-go with Yanni Gourde leads to a scoring opportunity for the Lightning
Jan Rutta shot from the right point hits Brayden Point in the left hand
Josh Bailey chance goes off the crossbar after a turnover deep in the Lightning zone
Rutta drive blocked by Scott Mayfield
Bailey shot from the right circle saved by Vasilevskiy
Colton redirect of a Savard shot goes wide
Vasilevskiy stops Beauvillier backhand shot from the slot after giveaway from Point at the Lightning blue line
Gourde shot from left circle off the rush goes off Varlamov’s leg pad
Savard shot from in front saved by Varlamov
Tyler Johnson backhander from the right circle saved by Varlamov. Colton can’t get to the rebound
Johnson shot from the point through a screen is covered by Varlamov
Mayfield shot from right side saved by Vasilevskiy
Barzal beats Hedman with an inside-outside move and shoots on Vasilevskiy, who makes a great save
Killorn backhander from the right circle saved by Varlamov
ISLANDERS GOAL. Steven Stamkos turns the puck over just inside the blue line in the Islanders zone, Josh Bailey gets the puck up ice to Mathew Barzal, and Barzal gets a step on Jan Rutta before beating Vasilevskiy between the legs. Islanders 1, Lightning 0
Erik Cernak penalized for tripping Mathew Barzal
Blake Coleman skates with the puck out of the Lightning zone
Coleman forces another turnover and Hedman clears the puck
Another Lightning clear
Killorn with a great shorthanded opportunity as he drives the right side of the net after Jan Rutta blocked a shot and passed the puck up the boards
Lightning kill their third penalty of the game
Palmieri penalized for interfering with Cernak
Kucherov shot misses the net and the Isles clear the puck
Stamkos shot tipped up over the net in the closing seconds of the period
Hedman can’t keep the puck in the zone, and the period ends
(Isles lead 1-0 after two periods)
We thought it would be a physical series, and the shenanigans start eight seconds into the game as Barclay Goodrow and Matt Martin are penalized for unsportsmanlike conduct. So it’s 4-on-4 hockey right off the bat
Ryan McDonagh shot from the point stopped by Semyon Varlamov
Brock Nelson shot is blocked
Vasilevskiy makes a save on Nelson shot
McDonagh stick prevents a potential tap-in chance for Anthony Beauvilier after a pass from Nick Leddy
Nick Leddy blocks Mikhail Sergachev shot from the left circle
Back to 5-on-5 play
Victor Hedman drive from the point goes off the netting out of play
McDonagh penalized for tripping J-G Pageau after Travis Zajac steals the puck from Anthony Cirelli
Sergachev clears the puck
Jan Rutta drive shorthanded drive from the right circle stopped by Varlamov
Blake Coleman forces a turnover in the neutral zone and gets a shorthanded chance from the left circle that is saved by Varlamov
Lightning kill the McDonagh penalty
Yanni Gourde hits Andy Greene behind the Islanders net
Alex Killorn levels Mathew Barzal at center ice
Kyle Palmieri shot from left circle goes up over the net
Vasilevekiy stretches right to left to stop Palmieri chance from in front after a feed from below the goal line from Pageau
Goodrow penalized for roughing Palmieri
Islanders did not have a shot on their first power play
Erik Cernak clears the puck
Gourde breaks up a pass and sends the puck down the ice
Vasilevskiy stops Noah Dobson shot from right point
Beauvilier shot from left circle deflected wide
Dobson shot turned aside
Sergachev blocks Jordan Eberle shot from left circle
Lightning kill penalty. Isles had four shots on goal
Brayden Point misses the net on a breakaway while being pressured by Greene. Point tried to shoot left after moving right and go up over the blocker
Ross Colton shot from outside the left circle gloved by Varlamov
Vasilevskiy makes save on Casey Cizikas redirect from in front
Leddy shot from the slot blocked
Islanders outshoot the Lightning 14-11 in the period
(No scoring after one period)
Your pregame scouting report
If it feels like 2020 all over again, well, it should.
A Lightning team led by forwards Nikita Kucherov and Brayden Point, defenseman Victor Hedman and goaltender Andrei Vasilevskiy is playing the New York Islanders for a chance to advance to the Stanley Cup final.
Only this time, teams are back playing in their home arenas, the road to the semifinals stayed within their divisions, Tampa Bay has its sights set on a second consecutive Cup and Steven Stamkos is a participant.
Stamkos’ presence is no small thing.
Limited to three minutes last postseason following surgery to repair a core muscle injury, the Lightning captain has 13 points over the first two playoff series, including five goals and one game-winning goal. Eight of his points have came on the power play, including three goals with the man-advantage.
Aside from the obvious leadership he provides, Stamkos has teamed with Anthony Cirelli and Alex Killorn on one of the Lightning’s most effective lines and been an ever-present threat from the left circle on a power-play unit with Kucherov, Point, Killorn and Hedman that has been near unstoppable.
Ironically, it’s the Islanders’ captain who is absent from this series. Anders Lee has been out since midseason with a lower-body injury.
We’ll find out, starting at 3 p.m., as Tampa Bay aims to strike the first blow in a series that will determine one of the two Stanley Cup finalists.
Setting the scene
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