Lightning immisces into a 2-0 hole, then Nikita Kucherov makes things worse

Photo: Chris O'Meara (AP Photo)

Now that the Columbus Blue Jackets and the Tampa Bay Lightning have played in two playoff games, let's see the team that Vegas will guarantee almost all and that would have a place in the Stanley Cup final:

TAMPA – Forty minutes after the start of the second game, the madmen rained on the Lightning and continued throughout the last period.

This may be the last time Bolts Nation saw this team and there was not much to be desired in the mailing.

It's from Diana C. Nearhos from the Tampa Bay Times hinting that this defeat against Columbus in the second game could have been a death sentence for the local team. Although it would be silly to cancel a team of 62 wins before the fourth defeat of the series (it's not that Nearhos does), especially in a post-season as crazy as the NHL can be , the Lightning regresses somewhat in the game. after Taking a 3-0 lead at home certainly does not do them any good.

Regarding what really happened during the match, Columbus followed the impetus given by a staggering team from Tampa Bay after Game 1 to give themselves a 3-0 lead after two periods. Although this is reflected, the dashboard was a site well enough known that even broadcasters anticipated a potential return of Lightning. Five minutes after the end of the period, it seemed almost likely. After almost every move was almost frustrating to get into the goal, Mikhail Sergachev finally managed to break through the score for Tampa Bay to reduce the score to two. But the dream died less than five minutes later when a blistering parade between the Lightning defensemen allowed Columbus Riley Nash, whose first goal of the year was to return very late in the regular season, Andrei Vasilevskiy. A few minutes later, Artemi Panarin has imposed 5-1 in favor of the Blue Jackets, the final score.

It is certainly a difficult position to take when the team supposed to leave the round is left behind by a team that objectively does not have as much talent. Expectations increase the pressure exponentially. Some players are able to recognize what's wrong, accept the pressure and use it as a motivator for game advancement. Other players, like Nikita Kucherov of Tampa Bay, decided to further impede their team's chances by suspending several matches.

Late in the third period, with his team reduced to 5-1 and the defeat almost guaranteed, Kucherov – who led the Lightning to points this season – decided to trip Markus Nutivaara, who slipped into the table. As Nutivaara tried to get up, Kucherov headed straight for the shot Blue Jacket and hit him again.

After the end of the game, the NHL's NHL security service tweeted that Kucherov would be the subject of an audience next Saturday for his great success. Estimates range from a pat on the wrist to the death penalty because the league is not quite consistent in this area.

Lightning coach John Cooper was realistic about his team's situation, but he tried to change things to make things look better than they actually seemed.

"It's a five-alarm fire," Cooper said after Friday's 5-1 defeat of Columbus with a 2-0 lead in the series. "It's adversity. Sometimes it's good. Sometimes you have to go through things like this to see how we react. "

One of two things is happening here. Either Cooper does not realize how important a fire is to qualify as a five-alarm fire – as a reminder, a five-alarm fire in New York has already required about 200 firefighters from 33 departments to extinguish it – or makes his best impression of Lieutenant Frank Drebin's The naked pistol and tell people that there is "nothing to see here" while knowing that there is only the chaos behind it. I'll guess it's the last one.

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