Lightning-Capitals: Two seconds that flipped Game 1 to Washington

Lightning-Capitals: Two seconds that flipped Game 1 to Washington

The Capitals came to Tampa this weekend intent on winning at least one of the first two games of the Eastern Conference Finals against the Lightning.

Lightning coach Jon Cooper said earlier in the week the Lightning can not make a habit of losing Game 1 of the series.

The second match of the series will be held in Tampa Sunday, may 13.

Washington now leads Tampa 1-0 in the series.

Said goaltender Braden Holtby: "We know probably better than anyone how complete a player Nick is, especially defensively". Even in the third period, the Caps did a good job, only getting outshot 11-7 despite having a four-goal lead. Andrei Vasilevskiy has given up 26 goals on 326 shots faced and Louis Domingue has allowed zero goals on seven shots. He wired home a one-timer off a cross-ice Kucherov feed at 3:45. The goaltending change brought life to the Lightning as they picked up two goals in the third.

With 7.1 seconds left in the first period, the Capitals were given a power play, an offensive zone faceoff at the right circle. Because, as we saw in the last series, the Lightning likely aren't going to play this terribly again.

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The Tampa Bay Lighting need a victory here to tie up this series at 1-1 in order to prevent falling in a massive hole early.

Just two seconds later, the Capitals scored on the powerplay in front of a crowd of 19,090 at Tampa's Amalie Arena. By the end of 40 minutes, the Caps were up 4-0. Nikita Kucherov made a nice move to beat Holtby, but the goal was disallowed as Tampa Bay was caught with too many men on the ice.

And though they're now down 1-0, there's zero panic in this Lightning dressing room, among this group that put together the best regular season record in the National Hockey League.

There were questions concerning which Capitals team the Lightning would face: one suffering an emotional letdown after finally beating the Penguins to the conference final or one who would use the energy from slaying that playoff dragon to continue its quest for the first Stanley Cup in franchise history. To show Washington's domination, 11 others were blocked and five missed the net.

With Backstrom out of the lineup, Lars Eller has admirably centered a second line with wingers T.J. Oshie and Jakub Vrana, and he was also promoted to the top power-play unit. The sellout streak is at 155 games. "We didn't do anything we wanted to do", says Johnson, the Spokane, Wash. -born forward, who assisted on Tampa's second goal on Friday. C Nicklas Backstrom did not dress. LW Andre Burakovsky (upper-body injury) returned to the lineup.

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