Hedman shines as Lightning strike down Capitals

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Steven Stamkos said the Lightning reclaimed it in Game 3.

The Lightning climbed back into the series with Tuesday's 4-2 win, improving to 4-1 on the road in the 2018 playoffs. "It's a step in the right direction". "We had a long stretch where nothing was going in and we've had a stretch here where they've scored a few goals in the first three games here".

They possessed the puck, making the Capitals chase the game rather than chasing it themselves, thanks to some tactical adjustments and line scrambling.

Following a regular season where they converted 24.9 percent of all power-play opportunities (the third-best), the Lightning have connected on 30.0 percent of their power plays in the postseason.

With the Lightning trailing 2-0 in the best-of-seven series to the Washington Capitals, it was Stamkos who set the tone early in Game 3 by uncorking a one-timer that found a puck-sized target in the far top corner.

Hedman also assisted the second goal.

Cooper pointed to Game 4 against the Boston Bruins in the conference semifinals, when Kucherov and Stamkos scored in a game that basically put that series out of reach.

"It doesn't matter how you defend them, they're going to find a way", Cooper said not only of Stamkos' goal, but Kucherov's similar one-timer.

With a.919 save percentage and 29.2 saves per game, Andrei Vasilevskiy (53-25-3) has been the primary option in goal for Tampa Bay this season.

"Today was one of those games you feed pucks to Kuch and Stammer, pucks are going to go in", Hedman said. But that didn't stop Cooper from marvelling at the speed, accuracy and sheer power of a shot that simply can not be stopped.

"There's no power play that works when they don't get them", Trotz said.

Tampa Bay is 63-32 straight up (SU) and has earned 11.0 units for moneyline bettors this year.

"The team that really gets the lead is the team that's in the driver's seat. They [converted] in all three games on the power play". That was big for us. "We just have to relax a little bit and stay positive". "It's just so much better to play with the lead". Tampa Bay scored on each resulting power play. The team is 6-3 in those games.

"We knew we had to come in here and win hockey games". "You've got to check in this league". "Our start in the first period was really good".

"We had to check tonight, and it helped it go in our favor".

Brett Connolly tightened the game, scoring for the Capitals about seven minutes later, but Point regained the lead with a goal 16:03 into the second frame.

"We need to be smarter and not give stupid penalties", Washington defenseman Dmitry Orlov said. "He's our best player".

This was how it should be for Tampa Bay. "You look at last night, (defenceman Matt) Niskanen was over there and (goaltender Braden) Holtby was set and (Stamkos) still found a way". "We've made it a series".

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