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Your Tampa Bay Lightning-Boston Bruins Game 7 primer

May 27, 2011, 7:46 PM EDT

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Ryan Malone, Zdeno Chara Getty Images

With the NBA finals matchup determined last night, much of the sports world will get the chance to witness some of the finest competition possible in sports in tonight’s hockey game. The Tampa Bay Lightning and Boston Bruins traveled bumpy roads to get to this point, but whoever wins tonight’s Game 7 gets to face the Vancouver Canucks juggernaut in the 2011 Stanley Cup finals.

Tampa Bay @ Boston (Versus) – 8 p.m. ET; Series tied at 3-3

The Lightning carried the play for much of this series and would not be denied during Game 6 at home. The Bruins have been surprisingly lax defensively during much of this series, often appearing flat-footed against a faster Tampa Bay team. The often superlative play of goalie Tim Thomas has been the ace up their sleeve during their three wins (and occasionally in defeat), though. He gives the Bruins an advantage over a suddenly shaky Dwayne Roloson, although Roloson’s 7-0 record in elimination games cannot be denied.

We’re hard-pressed to pick a favorite going into this one and so were PHT readers, as you can see from the Game 7 poll results.

The Bruins go into Game 7 as light favorites among readers, but they obviously didn’t run away with the poll results.

Do you want more material as you wait to find out which team will represent the Eastern Conference in the Stanley Cup finals? Here are all the game recaps:

Game 1
Game 2
Game 3
Game 4
Game 5
Game 6

If you want a little more depth, though, here are some of PHT’s best stories going into Game 7.

Top 10 NHL Player Searches
  1. C. Price (1788)
  2. J. Harding (1742)
  3. M. Staal (1608)
  4. J. Giguere (1545)
  5. J. Thornton (1466)
  1. J. Spezza (1277)
  2. A. Semin (1276)
  3. A. Ekblad (1269)
  4. C. MacArthur (1248)
  5. B. Bishop (1158)