Sports

Leafs lose 5-3 towards Tampa Bay Lightning to even first-round sequence


Victor Hedman had a aim and three assists for the primary four-point playoff recreation of his profession because the Tampa Bay Lightning defeated the Toronto Maple Leafs 5-3 on Wednesday to even their first-round sequence 1-1.

Nikita Kucherov, with a aim and two assists, Brayden Point, Corey Perry and Brandon Hagel additionally scored for the two-time defending Stanley Cup champions.


Tampa Bay Lightning defenceman Victor Hedman (77) celebrates his aim with teammates Alex Killorn (17) ahead Steven Stamkos (91) after scoring previous Toronto Maple Leafs goaltender Jack Campbell (36) throughout first interval, spherical one, NHL Stanley Cup playoff hockey motion in Toronto on Wednesday, May 4, 2022. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette.

Andrei Vasilevskiy made 31 saves in a bounce-back efficiency for the 2019 Vezina Trophy winner after the Lightning dropped the opener 5-0.

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Mitch Marner, with a aim and an help, Michael Bunting and Alexander Kerfoot replied for Toronto, which obtained 29 stops from Jack Campbell. Auston Matthews added two assists.

Game 3 of the best-of-seven matchup goes Friday in Tampa.

The Lightning, who additionally misplaced Game 1 in three of eight sequence on their method to profitable these Cups the final two seasons, took a 1-0 lead on the facility play with simply 1.4 seconds left within the first interval.

After making an enormous cease on Point from the slot, Campbell was crushed by Hedman from in tight on a damaged play the place the puck popped out to the Lightning defenceman on the goaltender’s doorstep.


Toronto Maple Leafs left wing Michael Bunting (58) celebrates his aim with teammate defenceman Mark Giordano (55) throughout second interval NHL first-round playoff sequence motion towards the Tampa Bay Lightning goaltender Andrei Vasilevskiy in Toronto on Wednesday, May 4, 2022. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn.

Tampa, which went 0-for-5 on the person benefit in Game 1, had a significantly better begin after wanting gradual most of Monday, however needed to kill off two Toronto energy performs earlier within the interval earlier than Vasilevskiy made a great save on Colin Blackwell moments earlier than the guests took the lead.

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Coming into Wednesday, the Tampa netminder had a 14-0 report with a .966 save share and 5 shutouts following a loss the final two playoffs.

Vasilevskiy, who allowed 5 objectives on 33 pictures in Game 1, made an enormous glove save on Leafs defenceman Timothy Liljegren early within the second. Hedman then despatched Perry in alone on a breakaway lower than a minute later to make it 2-0 at 2:21.

Toronto minimize the deficit in half at 7:47 when Matthews took the physique on Ryan McDonagh and separated the Lightning blue-liner from the puck earlier than swiping a cross from his abdomen to Marner, who discovered Bunting for him to fireplace previous Vasilevskiy and ship Scotiabank Arena right into a frenzy.

Bunting returned to the Leafs’ prime line alongside Matthews and Marner after lacking the final 4 video games of the common season and Monday’s sequence opener with an undisclosed harm.

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But Tampa’s energy play – red-hot late within the common season earlier than Monday’s dud – related a second time after Toronto’s Wayne Simmonds took an undisciplined penalty when Kucherov delayed earlier than sniping one upstairs on Campbell at 9:57.

The Leafs had an opportunity to get the puck out of the defensive zone earlier within the sequence, however David Kampf handed to a stick-less T.J. Brodie as an alternative of clearing it himself.

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Toronto obtained its third energy play late within the interval solely to observe Tampa get likelihood after likelihood _ very similar to the Leafs through the Lightning’s early five-minute man benefit in Game 1.

Tampa put issues out of attain 1:33 into the third when Hagel tapped in from Campbell’s doorstep.

The Leafs netminder saved it at 4-1 a pair minutes by denying Kucherov his second on a breakaway.

Simmonds took one other penalty and the Lightning related for a 3rd power-play aim of the evening at 5:38 when Point fired residence off a Kucherov cross.


Toronto Maple Leafs ahead Mitchell Marner (16) will get hit by Tampa Bay Lightning defenceman Mikhail Sergachev (98) throughout second interval, spherical one, NHL Stanley Cup playoff hockey motion in Toronto on Wednesday, May 4, 2022. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette.

Marner obtained one again for Toronto with 8:07 left in regulation earlier than Kerfoot scored the Leafs’ second short-handed aim of the sequence with 4:17 left off an amazing play from Brodie.

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The Leafs then obtained an influence play with 2:35 remaining and pulled Campbell for a 6-on-4 benefit, however the battle-tested champs killed it off to go residence even at a recreation apiece.

© 2022 The Canadian Press




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