NHL Playoffs: Capitals Fall at Home to Lightning

WASHINGTON — Victor Hedman scored his first goal of the playoffs and added two assists, and Andrei Vasilevskiy made 36 saves to help the Tampa Bay Lightning get back into their Eastern Conference final series against the host Washington Capitals.

Hedman had the primary assist on power-play goals by Steven Stamkos and Nikita Kucherov and was a key part of three big penalty kills. As the Lightning rebounded from back-to-back home losses, Hedman, a Norris Trophy finalist as the N.H.L.’s top defenseman, was one of the most dominant players on the ice and extended his point streak to eight games in the 4-2 Lightning win on Tuesday night.

Criticized for his play in the first two games against Washington, Vasilevskiy was on top of his game as the Capitals put 38 shots on net. Vasilevskiy made seven saves on the penalty kill alone to save a beleaguered unit that came in ranked 13th out of 16 playoff teams.

The Lightning would still like to cut down on the quality chances Vasilevskiy will face in Game 4 on Thursday and beyond, like the one Brett Connolly scored on after a turnover by Ondrej Palat. They also surrendered a 6-on-5 goal to Evgeny Kuznetsov with 3 minutes 2 seconds left that made things interesting in the final minutes.

Article source: https://www.nytimes.com/2018/05/16/sports/baseball/nhl-playoffs-capitals-lightning.html

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