2022 NHL Playoffs: Lightning soar to 2-0 collection lead; Blues serve Avalanche their first postseason loss

The NHL’s Jap and Western Convention No. 1 seeds are again in motion Thursday for the second spherical of the 2022 Stanley Cup Playoffs. However whereas the Florida Panthers and Colorado Avalanche have that in widespread, the stakes for every of their Recreation 2s could not be extra completely different. 

Florida entered Thursday’s Recreation 2 towards the Tampa Bay Lightning in must-win mode after dropping Recreation 1 by a rating of 4-1 on Tuesday. Tuesday’s recreation was locked at 1-1 after the second interval, however the Lightning struck with three objectives within the last body to take the air out of FLA Stay Enviornment. 

Colorado dealt with enterprise on Tuesday, beating the fourth-seeded St. Louis Blues 3-2 in time beyond regulation. Defenseman Josh Manson scored the game-winning purpose at 8:02 of time beyond regulation, and it was fairly the memorable one contemplating it was additionally his first ever playoff purpose. Each groups’ goalies have been excellent this postseason, as Colorado’s Darcy Kuemper entered Thursday’s recreation rating second in objectives towards common (1.67), whereas the Blues’ Jordan Binnington is fourth in objectives towards common (1.94) and third in save proportion (.944)

Recreation 2: Lightning 2, Florida 1

With the sport tied 1-1 within the last minute of the third interval, it appeared time beyond regulation was inevitable — till Ross Colton delivered Panthers followers one among their worst recollections but. The 25-year-old heart received the puck previous Panthers goalie Sergei Bobrovsky with lower than 4 seconds remaining to provide the Lightning a 2-0 collection lead. Nikita Kucherov made a outstanding no-look go to arrange the purpose, which is right here in all its glory: 

Whereas a last-second loss is at all times heart-breaking, Florida suffered this one regardless of having a 37-27 benefit in pictures on purpose. Bobrovsky and Tampa Bay’s Andrei Vasilevskiy have been each spectacular, posting save percentages of .926 and .973, respectively. 

Tampa Bay’s Cory Perry recorded the sport’s first purpose at 12:06 of the primary interval, and Florida scored an equalizer at 18:07 of the second courtesy of Eetu Luostarinen. 

It was a quiet recreation for Florida’s Carter Verhaeghe, who recorded zero factors regardless of coming into the competition tied for second in in these playoffs with 12. This was Verhaeghe’s second consecutive recreation and not using a level. The Panthers at the moment are 0-4 this postseason when Verhaeghe scores fewer than two factors; they’re 4-0 when he data at the very least two.  

Tampa Bay’s Steven Stamkos left for the locker room and returned to the sport thrice, displaying the grittiness that made him a crew captain. He’ll now get pleasure from an prolonged relaxation earlier than Recreation 3, as that’s set for Sunday at 1:30 p.m. ET in Tampa. 

Recreation 2: Blues 4, Avalanche 1

After their nail-biting time beyond regulation loss on Tuesday, the Blues evened their collection with the Avalanche at 1-1 on Thursday because of a wonderful efficiency from David Perron. The 33-year-old scored two objectives within the Blues’ 4-1 victory, bringing his postseason whole to seven — tied with Edmonton’s Evander Kane and Minnesota’s Kirill Kaprizov for the second most within the league this 12 months. 

This was Colorado’s first lack of the 2022 postseason. 

Neither crew scored within the first interval, however St. Louis jumped to a 2-0 lead within the second after objectives from Jordan Kyrou and Perron. Perron scored his with 36 seconds left within the interval, and it would not be his solely well timed strike. 

Colorado’s Gabriel Landeskog minimize St. Louis’ result in one with a purpose at 1:49 of the third interval to provide his crew an opportunity late. However with roughly 10 minutes to go, Perron scored his second purpose of the sport to all however shut it. Blues left wing Brandon Saad scored an empty-net purpose at 18:10 of the third, including an exclamation mark to his crew’s spectacular win. 

Binnington was excellent for St. Louis, stopping 30 of the 31 pictures that got here his means. Kuemper made 28 saves in his first lack of the 2022 postseason.

With the collection locked at 1-1, the Blues and Avalanche will meet in St. Louis for an important Recreation 3 at 8 p.m. ET. 

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