Lightning a win from Stanley Cup
>>EDMONTON: Kevin Shattenkirk ran the emotional gamut from lamenting his bad luck to overtime hero, and the Tampa Bay Lightning are one win away from claiming the Stanley Cup thanks to his winning goal in a 5-4 victory over the Dallas Stars on Friday night in Edmonton.
Shattenkirk, who had the misfortune of the overtime-forcing tally banking off his leg and into the net, responded with the winner that gives the Lightning a 3-1 lead in the best-of-seven series and the opportunity to claim the second Cup in franchise history this morning, Thai time.
“I was thinking in my head I deserved some kind of good karma for all that,” Shattenkirk said of the tying goal that set the stage for his heroics.
The pendulum didn’t take long to swing in his favour. Shattenkirk gained the puck as he moved down to the right dot from his point position and ripped a low shot into the net for his team’s third power-play goal of the game 6:34 minutes into extra time. Needless to say, his feelings differed from earlier.
“It’s kind of every emotion you can think of,” he said.
Brayden Point scored twice and goalie Andrei Vasilevskiy made 26 saves for the Lightning, whose other championship came in 2004.
Amidst the disappointment of the loss, the Stars were also upset at the penalty called on Jamie Benn that set the stage for the winner.
“Jamie breathes on him and the guy falls over,” said Stars forward Joe Pavelski. “Whether that’s the case or not, there’s a little battle going on there. Play-offs, it’s overtime, we expect fiveon-five. We expect to battle it out.”
It may have been a debatable call, but the Stars have only themselves to blame for being in that position. They failed to convert a third-period power play on a similar call against Tampa Bay’s Patrick Maroon, were the beneficiaries of a dubious embellishment call on Point when Corey Perry hooked him down and then also failed to cash in a power play early in overtime.
“Our power play had a chance to end the game, and they didn’t get it done. Simple as that,” said coach Rick Bowness.
Plus, the Stars blew a two-goal first-period lead — despite managing only three shots on goal in the opening frame — thanks to tallies by John Klingberg and Pavelski.
However, Point tallied twice to draw the Lightning even — his first with 32.6 seconds remaining in the first period, and the second just past the two-minute mark of the second period in an entertaining affair.
After Corey Perry restored the Dallas lead midway through the second period, Yanni Gourde again drew the Lightning even with 66 seconds left in the frame. Then it was Tampa Bay’s turn to blow a lead with Alex Killorn scoring early in the third period only to see Pavelski’s game-tying marker with 8:25 minutes remaining in regulation.
The Lightning didn’t have captain Steven Stamkos in the line-up after his brief return to action in Game Three, but the Stars added to their injury woes, which are more severe than Tampa Bay’s. Forward Roope Hintz left the game in the second period for a Stars team already without No.1 goalie Ben Bishop, defencemen Stephen Johns and Taylor Fedun and forwards Radek Faska and Blake Comeau.
Anton Khudobin made 30 saves for the Stars.