In which most everything that could go wrong did.
Series Tied 1-1
Andrei Vasilevskiy… was GD horrible. There’s no sugar coating it. It looked like the two goaltenders had switched teams between Game One and Game Two. Seven goals on 35 shots. Put the Third Period aside… through 40 minutes Toronto’s xG was less than 2.5 and Vasilevskiy had allowed six. History tells us Andrei usually follows up a clunker with a Picasso. Let’s hope that’s the case because he didn’t start on time tonight and he really dragged his team down with him.
0:47 TOR Marner (1), (Rielly, Matthews)(PP)
12:45 TOR Tavares (1), (Rielly)
15:08 TOR Nylander (2), (Rielly, Matthews)
8:58 TB Cole (1), (Stamkos, Point)
13:14 TOR Tavares (2), (Rielly, Nylander)
15:52 TOR Aston-Reese (1), (Kampf, Lafferty)
18:02 TOR Marner (2), (Brodie)
12:38 TB Perry (2), (Bellemare, Maroon)
15:06 TOR Tavares (3), (Marner, O’Reilly)(PP)
I don’t think the club expected Victor Hedman to be unable to go tonight, hence no recall from Syracuse, and when he couldn’t give it a try that just set everything in an ominous direction. Killorn gifts Toronto an instant power play with a dumb turnover, Vasilevskiy does a sieve impression for the first 20 minutes and here we are. Most of tonight’s wounds were self-inflicted by the Lightning. I didn’t think Toronto blew them off the rink, although there were stretches the Lightning didn’t do enough possession-wise. Still, this isn’t a result of a huge talent gap, IMO. Puck management and details and goaltending (above all) were at fault.
When you think about Victor Hedman only playing 6:35 in total in these first two games, there’s nothing wrong with sitting at 1-1 in this series. Still, it’s rough letting Toronto off the canvas the way they did tonight and it sets up a really important Game Three at home, which has been a fortress for the Lightning much of the season. I did like the way the Lightning played in the Third Period in garbage time and I expect them to come out with more snarl and focus next time out.
Darren Raddysh was -2 with 1 shot, 3 hits, and 4 blocked shots in 22:24.
Box score and extended statistics from NHL.com.