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Crashing Lightning: Montreal crushes Tampa Bay, takes 2-0 series lead

Apr 18, 2014, 9:44 PM EST

Losing in overtime to the Montreal Canadiens in Game 1 was a setback for the Lightning, but Tampa Bay’s 4-1 loss tonight before the series heads to Montreal for Game 3 is cause for alarm.

Tampa Bay was missing some key players, including rookie forward Ondrej Palat and starting goaltender Ben Bishop, but the Canadiens and in particular goaltender Carey Price deserve a lot of credit for Friday’s result.

After allowing four goals on 23 shots in Game 1, Price turned aside 26 of 27 shots and came within 1:59 minutes of his fourth career playoff shutout.

Not that he necessarily had to be anywhere near perfect in this one as his teammates were able to provide him with a lot of support.

After failing to find the back of the net with the man advantage for nearly a month, Canadiens defenseman P.K. Subban ended the drought with a hard shot that was then tipped in by David Desharnais to give Montreal a 1-0 lead.

Rene Bourque powered his way through the Lightning defenders to provide Montreal with an insurance goal midway through the second period.

Tampa Bay goaltender Anders Lindback‘s night only got worse from there until he was pulled in favor of netminder Kristers Gudlevskis midway through the third period. Gudlevskis made a name for himself with Team Latvia in the Olympics but has just one game worth of NHL experience.

With Bishop not expected to return soon, the Lightning might end up starting Gudlevskis on Sunday. Not that the Lightning’s problems can be solved simply by swapping goalies.

  1. justinhbhb - Apr 18, 2014 at 10:02 PM

    Briere, Bourque, Gallgher feeling confident and Subban playing well… Montreal Canadiens looking for 25

  2. hockeydon10 - Apr 18, 2014 at 10:11 PM

    Bishop was their clear-cut #1 goalie. When he went down right before the playoffs you know that had to affect not only their preparations but also their confidence. Looks like everyone can see why Lindback ended up as the backup while Bishop played the majority of the games.

    • qwerty007qwerty007 - Apr 19, 2014 at 12:33 AM

      The way to the Stanley Cup is on the back of a an in form and hot goalie. We got lucky in game one that we could keep pace scoring with Tampa – Price had an off night. Some nights you need your goalie to stand on his head and steal one for you, because you cannot always count on scoring 4 goals a game. Howard did it for Detroit tonight against Boston. Behind every Stanley Cup team there is usually a hot goalie – even the high powered Oilers of the 80’s had Grant Fuhr…

  3. billiam55 - Apr 18, 2014 at 10:19 PM

    one word: GOALTENDING

  4. chanceoffleury - Apr 19, 2014 at 12:06 AM

    If Bishop doesn’t make a quick recovery this could end very ugly for the Lightning. It’ll be a shame if they get blown out; they have a pretty good team this year. Luckily there’s a lot of youth for them to work with for years to come if things don’t go their way. Couldn’t even blame them if it does happen though, Price has had a hell of a year. He looks solid. Montreal is gonna be tough to beat. As much as I’d like to see Detroit come out of that series, Boston-Habs would be crazy fun to watch next round. Especially for those of us who wouldn’t have a dog in that fight.

  5. c9castine - Apr 19, 2014 at 12:34 AM

    hate to quit on the lightning but they are deep enough to be missing Bishop and Palat right now. even just those two is rough, especially Bishop.

    Dont see how they win this series. Maybe a game or two but thats it.

  6. joey4id - Apr 19, 2014 at 7:45 AM

    Without Bishop they are doomed, and we can clearly see that TB is missing St. Louis. Callahan has to bring his game up a few notches.

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