Four other teams were looking to even their streak tonight in another entertaining evening of Stanley Cup Playoff action.
Louis Domingue can’t find the magic of spicy pork and broccoli for the Penguins in Game 2 against the Rangers
Frank Seravalli reported ahead of Game 2 that Pittsburgh Penguins goaltender Casey DeSmith will not be available for the squad against the New York Rangers, delivering another blow to Pens goaltending depth that has already Tristan Jarry on the shelf. So they had to turn again to Louis Domingue, who stepped up and made 17 key saves for them in overtime to give them the win in Game 1.
Unfortunately, Domingue was only able to hold his own against the likely Vézina winner of the Rangers in Igor Shesterkin for so long. It was close for most of the game, with Rangers only 3-2 up for 48 minutes. But then the floodgates opened in the third period, as Rangers got two goals in 1:47 from Artemi Panarin and Frank Vatrano to put it out of reach and tie the series. Panarin’s goal in particular seemed to sap Domingue and the Penguins’ confidence a bit, as he got a sneaky rebound off Pens defenseman Mike Matheson and through Domingue’s five hole.
And of course, it’s not a real knockout match without punches and theatrics. Late in the third, Shesterkin drew a goalie interference call when Jeff Carter ran into him, although he could It looked like Shesterkin hadn’t tried to pull away as quickly as he could. Was it a cheeky penalty from Shesterkin or a dirty play from Carter?
The Panthers fight back in a blistering win over the Capitals
The Washington Capitals surprised just about everyone in Game 1 as they came out the door and upset the Florida Panthers with a 4-2 win, and just like that the pressure was on. Panthers. Would the pressure of winning their Presidents Trophy and 24-season playoff drought get to them? How would they react?
The answer was « with a bang ». They didn’t start hot right away, but the Panthers got two quick ones in the final five minutes of the period. A blast from Aaron Ekblad that deflected off Caps defender Martin Fehervary and opened the scoring, but it wasn’t until Jonathan Huberdeau and Aleksander Barkov combined for that fine goal to make it 2-0 that you knew the Panthers We’ve seen all year weren’t shaken by the Game 1 loss.
After that, it might as well have been over. The Caps made it interesting with a Nicklas Backstrom power-play goal in the second, but the Panthers responded with three more goals in the frame and won the game 5-1 to tie the series.
More stingy defensive hockey as Stars tie series with Flames
For a man who preaches a well-structured system, Calgary Flames head coach Darryl Sutter loves chaos. After Flames defenseman Rasmus Andersson and Dallas Stars defenseman John Klingberg didn’t quite get along in Game 1 of the series, Sutter decided to push the bear starting Andersson in response to the Stars starting Klingberg .
That’s about all we’ve seen of this mini-rivalry in this series, as both defenders kept their wits about them for the most part. There was still some tough stuff, as the game saw four instances of players from both teams being given penalties for rallies, but nothing quite like what we saw in Game 1.
Other than that, it was a very similar game to Game 1, as both teams settled for just one goal (on a goalkeeper). This time it would be in favor of the Stars, as Joe Pavelski would score the only goal over Jacob Markstrom early in the game, and the lead would hold, with the help of an empty-netter from Michael Raffl. Jake Oettinger made 29 saves for the shutout, while Jacob Markstrom made 21 of 22 in the loss.
Connor Ingram steals the show, but Avalanches are still too much for Predators
Much of the talk in this series about how the Nashville Predators could make this a competitive series usually had the same answer: goalie. But, I think a lot of people imagined that Juuse Saros was the guy on the net for the Preds to steal the show, not Connor Ingram.
Ingram came into Game 1 relieving David Rittich after it was 5-0 before the end of the first period, and was strong enough to start in Game 2. Ingram didn’t start off on the right foot , as he allowed the first shot he faced from Nathan MacKinnon, but he learned his lesson and was nearly clear for the rest of the game, especially after Yakov Trenin leveled the game later in the period.
The Avs nearly beat Ingram in the dying seconds of the second, as Valeri Nichuskin passed him amid the chaos in front of the net. But this chaos caused the goal to be abandoned, as Artturi Lehkonen was pushed by Dante Fabbro on Ingram, and the goal was immediately recalled. The Avs would contest the play, but not only would they not recover the goal, but they also had to go shorthanded for delaying the game. Was the contact caused by Fabbro’s push, or did Lehkonen get too close to Ingram on his own?
The canceled goal would not end up coming back to haunt the Avs, as after a third period and another half of an overtime period from Ingram looking unbeatable a second time, Cale Makar finally got past the Preds keeper for the win. .
Despite the loss, it was a spectacular performance from Ingram, who would finish the night with 49 saves on 51 shots. To put it into perspective, the Avalanche finished the night with 4.43 goals expected in all situations, according to Natural Stat Trick, and Ingram allowed just two goals. It’s a shame he couldn’t get the win, but it probably makes the Predators feel a little a little better than Saros is not yet in the range.