How much of a difference can 48 hours and a venue switch make?
A 2-0 deficit in the 2022 Stanley Cup Final — and getting off of a 7-0 loss To the Colorado Avalanche This felt even more unfair than the score. Tampa Bay Lightning He returned home to throw an epic counterpunch and skate off with a 6-2 victory Amalie Arena was packed with enthusiastic fans.
The series' tone seems to have changed, which has created a legitimate goalie controversy for Avs who replaced Darcy Kuemper Midway through the second half of this devastating loss,
What lessons can we draw from this contest? What has happened to the Stanley Cup Final's momentum?
It's back in a series
Captain After the Lightning were defeated in Game 2 by a 7-0 loss, Steven Stamkos He said, “Let us find out what our strengths are when we get home.”
It was amazing to see the response from the Stanley Cup champions in Game 3. They were able to defend to their standards and limit an opponent to no more than two goals at home for six consecutive games. They received star performances from their top player — Stamkos. Victor Hedman, Ondrej Palat Nikita Kucherov Multi-point games had been played while the goalie Andrei Vasilevskiy 37 saved.
In NHL history, only five times has the Stanley Cup champion been trailed by 3-0 in a best of seven playoff series. None of the five series were won, and four ended in sweeps.
Lightning doesn't need to worry about this now. It's a series once again. — Greg Wyshynski
Bring the thunder
Monday marked nearly one month since Colorado suffered its last defeat. Their playoff record was 12-2. They reached the Cup Final with a 12-2 record. Tampa Bay offered their guests a generous slice of humble pie in Game 3.
The Avalanche idea Valeri Nichushkin The game's first goal was scored by Jon Cooper. Jon Cooper was successful in challenging for offside. Deflating.
Next Gabriel Landeskog The power play actually won. 1-0, Colorado. But it wasn't for long. After a dominant Game 2 performance, the Avalanche couldn't or wouldn't execute at the same level. They didn't win the races or the battles. They weren't ineffective in the neutral area. The Lightning resisted the temptation to push Tampa Bay around.
Colorado was at disadvantage without Andre Burakovsky Following a Game 2 shot block, the lineup changes to reflect the new position. Nazem Kadri Broken thumb also remains out. That's not an excuse. Their depth has been praised by the Avalanche throughout the season. They failed in Game 3, while the Lightning's depth enabled them to win.
It doesn't hurt that Vasilevskiy is a great guy. Darcy KuemperThe other was substituted by Pavel Francouz. Incoming goalie controversy? This is exactly what the Avalanche do not need.
In every aspect of Game 3, Tampa Bay was the superior team. Two goals were scored by Colorado on the power play, while most of their other efforts were unsuccessful. This was the largest margin Colorado has lost in playoffs. St. Louis Blues On — Checks Notes — May 19.
This is uncharted territory in Colorado's playoffs. What's next? — Kristen Shilton
Steven Stamkos attributes the Lightning's success in getting back into the series to their playing time on their home ice.
There is no wrong start
The Lightning needed Game 3 to recover from their two previous losses.
In the first two games, the Lightning fell behind by multiple goals in less than ten minutes. The poor start on the road had a negative impact on everything else. They were unable to stop the Avalanche attack and couldn't do anything about it. They wasted energy trying to climb out from those holes, which left them little to defend Colorado and establish their own offense.
They also had self-dug holes. In the first period, the Lightning provided an Avalanche 5-on-3 power play. They received a penalty at 1:11 into Game 2. Both Colorado chances were converted.
Like he does so often, winger Pat Maroon Tampa Bay received a sage analysis of Tampa Bay's situation and suggested how they could use the lessons from Games 1 and 2 to Game 3.
“When you get these guys feeling good and feeling the puck it's a whole new ballgame. Play our game, so stay out of the box. Play Tampa Bay Lightning hockey. Do not worry about the score. He said, “Don't worry about what the outcome will be.” “Listen. If they score the first goals, that's fine. Keep playing the same way you are playing and keep trying to find offense.
The Avalanche did score their first goal. Nichushkin's goal-scoring change-up shot, which beat Vasilevskiy, was eventually scored. However, video review determined that Vasilevskiy had offside. Landeskog's power play score at 8:19 made it 1-1; however, Maroon suggested that the Lightning continued to play like they were playing.
Center Anthony Cirelli The puck was pushed hard by Palat, and Darcy Kuemper was able to pass the puck through at 13:03 to tie it. The Lightning's skill was evident as Palat intercepted an offensive pass and Kucherov draw defenders in the attacking area. Stamkos then used that space to find Palat for his 10th goal during the playoffs.
Tampa Bay won the first period by a score of 2-1. They are now 7-1 in playoffs after they have won the first period. While it wasn't an ideal opening frame, it was sufficient to help them build a foundation that would allow them to win Game 3. — Wyshynski
Is it GOAT or goat?
Kuemper remains a puzzle in the playoffs. It was enough to get him removed from Game 3.
The Avs goalie started quickly and made big stops in the first period. Although his positioning was not exactly textbook, the puck did not go in. Colorado was struggling to get through the neutral area, which is their usual strength, so Kuemper's contributions made it possible for the Avalanche take a 1-0 advantage.
He was once again clutch on Tampa Bay’s first power-play opportunity. He was clutch again just before the wheels slid off.
Kuemper was defeated by Anthony Cirelli on Tampa Bay's second-man advantage. His shot looked more like a failed attempt at dangling. Ondrej Palat scored another goal to get the puck past Kuemper. The Lightning continued scoring until Kuemper allowed five goals on 22 shots for a.773 save rate midway through the second.
Kuemper didn't make the right moves. The harder stuff was left out. Why? We don't know. It was Pavel Francouz, hello!
Jared Bednar made the right decision. Kuemper was struggling as Vasilevskiy became better at the other end. Kuemper was too slow, he wasn't tracking the puck well, and the Lightning were picking at him.
Kuemper was called upon to take over Game 3. This was the first time that Kuemper had been called upon since Colorado beat St. Louis in round 2. Kuemper failed that assignment, which was quite unfortunate.
Francouz was excellent in relief, saving nine shots on ten shots.
What is Bednar's next move? Francouz is still the best option. He entered Game 3 with an impressive 6-0 record, a.906 save percentage, and 2.86 goals-against in the postseason. Kuemper may be given the benefit of doubt, as Jon Cooper did for Vasilevskiy following a difficult Game 1. If Vasilevskiy goes back to beast mode, which goalie gives Colorado the best chance?
It's an important decision. Colorado's hopes of winning it all hang in the balance. — Shilton
Ondrej Palat scores a goal to give Lightning the 2-1 victory over the Avalanche.
Bad news and good news for Tampa Bay's defense
The Lightning didn't chase Colorado during Game 3. They didn't give the Avalanche too many chances. They did not allow the Avalanche many odd-man chances. A team that appeared to be headed for elimination suddenly found its energy and was able match the Avalanche. A good defense and a better forecheck can do this.
This was a stunning result. The Avalanche lost Game 3 without a goal at even strength. They had scored seven goals in each of the previous two games. In 17 playoff games, it was the second time that the Avalanche had failed to score at equal strength. One important factor was that the Lightning had the last line switch at home. This allowed them to keep Steven Stamkos, Nikita Kucherov and others away from the festivities. Nathan MacKinnon Line and send Anthony Cirelli's check line to Alex Killorn Brandon Hagel Out there against the Avalanche’s top three.
In the Eastern Conference finals against the Toronto Maple Leafs, Tampa Bay's shut-off line was so important. New York Rangers When they were given the Mike Zibanejad Line starting in Game 3, They did not have the shot-attempt advantage over the MacKinnon lines — who could? They kept them off of the board at even strength.
Lightning discussed Andrei Vasilevskiy's “out to dry”, in Game 2. He was given a lot more assistance in Game 3.
The bad news is that the Avalanche dominated the power play. The Lightning entered Game 3 with a record of killing 70.8% off the home-ice power plays. Colorado won twice on the power play, and has now scored five goals with the man advantage. — Wyshynski
In Game 3, the Avalanche was missing crucial pieces. The one that was available couldn't make up the difference.
Nathan MacKinnon didn't score a goal in Cup Final. He only had two assists in three games. The Avalanche's depth players deserve a lot more attention. Bednar stated repeatedly that he doesn’t want MacKinnon placing the team on his back. This is not what Colorado needed in Game 3. It only needed some star power.
If Nichuskin's goal had stood, MacKinnon would have been awarded an assist. It was an outstanding helper. To match Tampa Bay's cooking, the Avalanche could have gotten a little more from MacKinnon. Stamkos, Cirelli and others were also scoring. Corey Perry Pat Maroon as the Lightning's production manager.
Cale Makar He bounced back well from Game 1 which was difficult for him, and was great in Game 2. On Monday, he was solid again. Although he didn't help Colorado's chances much, he was able to break up a 2-on-1 rush during the third period. It was a great example of how fast he can move the puck and make good plays. Makar's 2-point night places him third in NHL playoff scoring, with seven goals and 26 point in 17 games.
Bottom line: MacKinnon needs to have a great night. The second round against St. Louis Game 5 was huge. It's not about making him “The Guy” all night. Colorado is in dire need of a boost right now and MacKinnon could (and should) provide that. — Shilton
Steven Stamkos gets the puck and makes a great goal to give Lightning a 4-2 lead.
It's inevitable that something will give.
Fun fact: Colorado hadn't lost a playoff match on the road before Monday.
Another: Tampa Bay had not lost a playoff match at home. They haven't.
Stanley Cup Final history saw Game 3 be the first game in which both teams were riding active streaks of seven-plus games on their roads and at home.
This is a rare level of “evenly matched”. This trend will continue in Games 4-7, and it could be a sign of the future. — Shilton