The Bolts goalie becomes the franchise leader in shutouts after tonight’s 3-0 win over the Habs at home.
The last time the Montreal Canadians and the Tampa Bay Lightning squared off was way back on December 29. The Bolts won that game 6-5 on home ice and before that back on November 3 took a 4-1 decision in Montreal. Tonight would be the third of four meetings with the finale coming April 2nd up north.
Heading into play tonight, the Bolts are coming off a Valentine’s Day massacre of the 6-0 variety over the Dallas Stars. In the month of February, the Bolts have yet to lose in regulation (6-0-2). Their current eight-game point streak is their second longest of the season.
All’s quiet in the opening period
The first period saw a few big scoring chances early by both teams. Both teams also were unsuccessful on both their only power plays in the period, as well.
Upon further review…
Things started to get chippy in the second. Yanni Gourde and Max Domi threw down in quite the entertaining lock up and each got roughing penalties at the 11:01 mark. It wasn’t long after that the Canadians thought they’d broke the scoreless tie.
A couple minute review later and it was determined that Habs center Jesperi Kotkaniemi was offsides on the play. It would have been the fourth goal of the season for Brett Kulak. Instead, it remained a scoreless hockey game into the third period.
The big guns break the tie
The tie was finally broke on the first power play of the third. After Phillip Danault went to the box for hooking, Steven Stamkos and Nikita Kucherov didn’t take long to hook up along with Ondrej Palat for the 1-0 lead on Kucherov’s 27th goal.
Gourde, who had been denied a few times earlier in the game, took a pass from Brayden point and broke in on Carey Price, scoring top shelf for a quick 2-0 lead not a few minutes later. It was Gourde’s 16th of the season.
Kucherov approaching history
With his 67th assist of the season on Gourde’s goal, “Kuch” is one away from tying the single-season record held by Brad Richards and Martin St. Louis.
Another goal bites the dust
In what looked like a 3-0 Bolts lead and Tyler Johnson’s 21st goal of the season, the Canadians wanted the refs to take a look. Turns out, the ‘ol goalie interference came into play and the goal was reversed, keeping it a 2-0 game.
TJ with the dagger after all
With just over three minutes left, Johnson would get that 21st, after all. That goal would prove to be the dagger and put the Habs away for good.
— Tampa Bay Lightning (@TBLightning) February 17, 2019
With his sixth shutout of the season tonight and 18th of his career, Andrei Vasilevskiy passes Ben Bishop for the franchise record.
Vasy’s response to the question of how it felt to now be on top of the shutout mountain, “It’s cool.”
- Andrei Vasilevskiy – You just became the all-time franchise king of the goose egg. You get the number one star tonight, good sir.
- Yanni Gourde – Every single one of his 17:53 of ice time was spent hustling, throwing down, and most importantly scoring.
- Tyler Johnson – He was denied a goal in the third…then took it right back a few minutes later to ice the cake.
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