TAMPA, Fla. — 11:00 p.m.: Hurricanes win in overtime 3-2. Tampa Bay still leads the series 2-1.
10:36 p.m.: Still tied at the end of the third period. The game heads into overtime.
9:39 p.m.: Alex Killorn score, tying up the game 2-2 in the second period.
9:21 p.m.: Braydon Point scores for Lightning, bringing Tampa Bay within one of Hurricanes. The score is 2-1 Hurricanes.
9:18 p.m.: Hurricanes score another goal, extend lead 2-0 over Lightning.
9:12 p.m.: Hurricanes take the lead 1-0 over Lightning in the second period.
8:12 p.m.: Game 3 is underway as the Lightning look to extend their lead in front of their home crowd.
After winning their first two playoff games on the road at Florida, Lightning winger Steven Stamkos talked about getting greedy.
“Anytime you start on the road, the goal is to at least get one win,” the captain said. “And if you get the first one, you want to get greedy and take the second.”
The Bolts just did it again in the second round, leaving Raleigh, N.C. with a 2-0 series lead against the Hurricanes.
Now they return home to Amalie Arena for Games 3 and 4, with history on their side.
The Lightning are undefeated (7-0) when taking a 2-0 lead in a series.
Since 2010, in the 18 playoff series in which the Lightning won three games, they went on to lose just four of those series.
But, Carolina won’t go away easily.
Four of the teams’ last five matchups have been decided by one goal.
The Canes threatened to tie both games in this series in the closing minutes, pulling goaltender Alex Nedeljkovic for a 6-on-5 advantage. Carolina had great zone time in each instance.
In Game 1, Carolina put a flurry of five shots on net in the final 38 seconds. Lightning goalie Andrei Vasilevskiy saved three, and defenseman Victor Hedman blocked two.
In Game 2, the Canes sent four pucks to the net in the final 30 seconds. One missed wide, while Vasilevskiy saved the other three.
“Guys take great pride in protecting that lead and laying their bodies on the line all the time,” Hedman said Wednesday. “I think it’s just the mentality that we’ll do whatever it takes to win, and we’ll sacrifice our bodies over and over again. It’s fun to watch when you see guys layout to block shots and obviously working hard to protect that lead.”
The Bolts still haven’t played their best hockey. They were outshot 32-15 in Game 2 and have committed seven combined penalties in both games. Carolina has made it hard for Tampa Bay to get through the neutral zone, and the Bolts also need to improve puck possession.
The difference so far? Vezina Trophy finalist Vasilevskiy.
He’s allowed just one goal in each game and stopping 68 of the 70 total shots he's faced. He hasn’t allowed a five-on-five goal in the series.
"Vasy is a world-class goalie," coach Jon Cooper said. "When he's in the zone, I don't know if there's anybody better."
The question for Game 3 is the return of defenseman David Savard, who has an upper-body injury. Luke Schenn has filled his spot in the lineup, providing good and bad moments.
Savard skated in Tuesday’s morning skate – the next opportunity to see his progress is morning skate on Thursday before gametime.
Puck drops at 8 p.m.
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