tampa bay lightning vs toronto maple leafs predictions and preview

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NHL tampa bay lightning vs toronto maple leafs predictions and preview


 

 

Image licensed from USA Today Sports

 

The Toronto Maple Leafs will go on the road and take on the Tampa Bay Lightning in the sixth game of the first round of the playoffs. Toronto finished the season with a record of 54-21-7. Tampa Bay finished the season with a record of 51-23-8. The Lightning and Leafs faced each other four times this season with each team winning two games. Toronto leads the series 3-2. Puck drops at 7:30pm EST.

 

Leafs Win Game Five

Toronto found themselves down 2-0 early in game five. They bounced back and were down 2-1 at the end of the second period. The third period was all Toronto as they scored three goals in the third and went on to win the game 4-3 and take a 3-2 series lead. William Nylander scored a goal and had two assists. John Tavares scored a goal and had an assist. Morgan Rielly and Auston Matthews each scored a goal. Jack Campbell stopped 32 out-of-35 shots faced.

 

The Leafs were fantastic on offense this season. They ended the season hot on offense, scoring three goals or more in seven out of their last nine games. Toronto finished the season ranking second in goals per game and seventh in shots per game. Auston Matthews led Toronto with 106 points and he was first in the league in goals, with 60 goals on the season. Mitchell Marner had 97 points in just 72 games played. Toronto’s offense and stars showed up in game one, scoring five goals with Matthews and Marner leading the way. In the loss in game two, Marner scored a goal and had an assist, and Matthews had two assists. The Leafs scored five goals in game three but Auston Matthews did not record a point and Marner had one assist in the game. In game four, Toronto scored three goals, with Matthews recording one assist and Marner was held pointless. The Leafs came back in game five and scored three goals in the third period to win game five 4-3.

Defense and goaltending were decent for the Leafs this season. They finished the season ranking 19th in goals against per game and ninth in shots against per game. Jack Campbell had a record of 31-9-6 with a 2.64 GAA and a .914 SV%. Campbell was perfect in game one of the series. After a poor performance in game two, Campbell bounced back with a strong effort in game three, stopping 32 out of 34 shots faced. Campbell got crushed in game four, allowing five goals on 16 shots faced and he was removed from the game. He bounced back in game five, stopping 32 out of 35 shots faced and picked up the win in game five. Morgan Reilly had 68 points on the season. He was top-10 in the league among defensemen in points, goals, and assists. Rielly has one point or more in four out of five games in this series.

 

Lightning Lose Game Five

Tampa Bay was up 2-0 at the end of the first period in game five but they could not hold the lead and allowed three goals in the third period and lost game five 4-3. Nikita Kucherov had two assists. Victor Hedman, Steven Stamkos, and Ryan McDonagh each scored a goal. Andrei Vasilevskiy allowed four goals on 25 shots faced.

 

The offense was efficient for the Lightning this season. They ended the season by clicking on offense, scoring three goals or more in eight out of their last nine games. Tampa Bay finished the season ranking seventh in goals per game and 17th in shots per game. Steven Stamkos led the team with 106 points this season. He finished the season top-five in points. Stamkos has struggled in this series, recording two goals and one assist through the first five games. Game one of the playoff series did not go Tampa’s way and they were shut out. The offense bounced back in game two, scoring five goals but they scored just two goals in game three. They exploded in game four, scoring seven goals. The Lightning managed three goals in game five but it was not enough.

Defense and goaltending were both very good for Tampa Bay this season. They finished the season ranking sixth in goals against per game and seventh in shots against per game. Andrei Vasilevskiy had a record of 35-16-4 with a 2.46 GAA and .916 SV% this season. Vasilevskiy has not been sharp so far in this series. He has allowed three goals or more in each of the first five games of the series. Victor Hedman had another good season, with 85 points on the season. Hedman finished the season third in points, third in goals, and second in assists among all defensemen in the league. Hedman had a great game in games two and four of the series, recording a goal and three assists in game two and he had two assists in game four but he was pointless in games one and three of the series. He scored one goal in game five.





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