CARROLLWOOD, Fla. —
After back-to-back losses, the Lightning bounced back with a much needed win in Game 3 of the Stanley Cup Final and celebrated the win at an unexpected place.
ThunderBug, the Lightning’s mascot, took to the hallways at AdventHealth Carrollwood to share the win with healthcare workers and patients and to rally fans for Game 4 on Wednesday.
After being held to just 16 shots in a 7-0 loss in Denver in Game 2, the Lightning rebounded by finally finding a way to neutralize Colorado’s speed and solve Kuemper to avoid falling to the brink of elimination.
The defending champs became the first team since 1919 to win a Stanley Cup Final game after losing by seven-plus goals the previous game, according to the Associated Press.
ThunderBug visits AdventHealth Carrollwood
The back-to-back Stanley Cup champs overcame a 2-0 series deficit in the Eastern Conference final to eliminate the New York Rangers in six games. They’re looking to do it again against Colorado to complete their quest for the NHL’s first three-peat in nearly 40 years.
Cirelli and Palat scored in the opening period for the Lightning, who played with a lot more energy than in Games 1 and 2, when they appeared to be a step or two slower than the speedy, high-scoring Avalanche.
The seven-goal loss in Game 2 raised the question of whether a team that’s played 68 postseason games — most by a single club over a span of three playoffs — since 2020 is running out of gas as it tries to become the first franchise to win at least three consecutive Stanley Cup titles since the New York Islanders won four in a row from 1980-83.
The Lightning became the third team in NHL history score six goals in a Stanley Cup Final after yielding at least seven the previous game.