The Columbus Blue Jackets are still sending shockwaves throughout the National Hockey League, after beating the Tampa Bay Lightning 7-3 in game #4 of the 1st round Eastern Conference Playoffs to sweep the series 4-0.
Although it's highly unlikely that Islanders goalie Robin Lehner will maintain his.956 save percentage through the rest of the post-season, his team has been clicking in a similar manner to the Blue Jackets and their timing couldn't be better. Goaltender Sergei Bobrovsky made 30 saves. However, I've said it before and I'll say it again, outside of the first period in game one, the Blue Jackets have arguably been the better team for the other 8 periods in this series.
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"Nothing was our way in the series", he said. To wit, the Blue Jackets managed 48.6 percent of the shot attempts, 50.1 percent of the shots and 48.7 percent of the scoring chances at five-a-side through the first three games. Tampa Bay was first at +250. However, several customers placed bets on Columbus to win the series before Game 1, and even more placed bets at +134 after Columbus took a one-game lead, according to a company spokesperson. One comment read, at least he didn't choke like Tampa. Pierre Luc-Dubois had a goal and a pair of assists.
Stamkos, Cedric Paquette and Brayden Point scored for Tampa Bay, which never led in this elimination game. Whether you want to call it the greatest upset of all time or the greatest collapse of all time, it doesn't matter because the Blue Jackets swept the Lightning in four games.
Islanders 3, Penguins 1 - Jordan Eberle scored for the fourth straight game, Robin Lehner stopped 32 shots, and NY finished off Sidney Crosby and Pittsburgh at home for a stunning sweep. The answer - whenever the architect the Pittsburgh Penguins general manager arrives at it - will determine how the franchise emerges from the rubble of a first-round playoff sweep at the hands of the New York Islanders.
It wasn't almost enough to stop the Islanders. The Capitals finished with the league's best regular-season record in 2010 (first-round loss), 2016 (second-round loss) and 2017 (second-round loss) before winning a franchise-first Stanley Cup previous year, when Nashville won the Presidents' Trophy and then got eliminated in the second round.
St. Louis star Vladimir Tarasenko shrugged off the loss. "A very structured team over there, played to their systems, didn't waver and outplayed us for four games".
Game 5 is Thursday night back in Winnipeg.
The team's power-play has been lethal at 50 per cent.
Scheifele tied it at the 7:33 mark, tipping in a feed from Connor. The OVER has paid out on the totals in each of the first three games of this series.
They made a flurry of moves at the trade deadline, most notably bringing in Matt Duchene from the Ottawa Senators, in order to clinch the Metro Division and arm themselves with enough weapons in order to change their fortunes in the postseason. "We're getting close to our game and it's pretty risky".
The Golden Knights took a step toward knocking the Sharks out of the playoffs for the second straight year by rolling to a 6-3 win in Game 3 to take a 2-1 lead. Atkinson connected on an empty-netter with a minute left in the game.
The goal seemed to steady the Islanders, who settled in and kept it simple.
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