It’s hard to believe that tonight was the beginning Stanley Cup Finalhowever it also feels inevitable that it is a file Colorado Avalanche I got to the point. Match against a champion twice in a row Tampa Bay Lightning It was sure to be exciting, and we weren’t disappointed.
The first period
What was surely a fast-paced start held him back a bit with a loose stick and three whistles during the first 30 seconds of the game, but the avalanche managed to regroup and start putting pressure on Tampa Bay. Mikko Rantanen had a good scoring opportunity which Andrei Vasilevsky turned down, however, it was a glimpse of what was to come from Colorado.
All four Colorado lines were playing hard, proving to any skeptics that their break didn’t slow them down at all. Lightning cannot be understated, and Darcy Kuemper made his first tackle in this match. Soon, Colorado got another chance to score, but Valery Neshushkin’s shot hit the post. Darren Helm decided tonight was the night to play the game of his life, reach the puck across the ice and create opportunities for Colorado.
Unfortunately, Josh Manson was called to grab the baton, and the avalanche went in for the penalty at 5:07. Tampa Bay scored three goals against the Rangers, so an avalanche had to kill that goal. Thank God they were able to do so. Shortly after Manson was knocked out of the box, Gabriel Landskog scored a pass from Mikko Rantanen, scoring the first goal of the match for the avalanche and his ninth goal in the playoffs.
Lightning was unable to respond, as Colorado scored their second goal at 9:23, a well deserved goal from Valeri Nichushkin. Lightning had a decent power game earlier, although an avalanche killed her, but Colorado was dominant.
Tampa managed to close the gap when Eric Johnson lost track of the disc, giving Nick Ball a chance to pass Darcy Comber. One goal difference isn’t perfect, but Colorado had the necessary lead. And with another penalty kick called Lightning, Avalanche has found itself in the power game.
This turned out to be a 5-on-3 avalanche after Tampa was called up for a second penalty kick. Great avalanche chance Artturi Lehkonen took advantage of a pass from Mikko Rantanen. Once again, Colorado regained its two-goal lead, coming in second with 15 shots on target to eight lightnings.
The tide turned into an avalanche somewhat per second. Tampa started hitting the post, a lucky break for Colorado. But when Jack Johnson and Maroon were called in to bullies, they found themselves in a 4v4 situation. Manson is a key player at these moments because he’s a solid defensive man who makes some big hits, so losing him at this point wasn’t ideal. However, the team made better use of the situation.
However, many men on the ice were soon summoned, putting them on death row. It’s an unnecessary and potentially costly mistake and definitely frustrating to see in a game like this. Despite their error, they got a very strong penalty kick with plenty of clearance to take the disc out of their area.
Despite an excellent penalty shootout and another chance from Nichushkin, they seemed to lose their momentum for a minute that would turn the tide of the match, allowing Lightning to score twice within 48 seconds. Suddenly a two-goal lead turned into a draw.
The team wasn’t going to let him disrupt what has been a great game so far, finding ways to put pressure on Tampa at the end of the second half. They were unable to convert any of their chances into goals, as they tied the break by three.
Both teams had a lot to prove in this period; With only 20 minutes left, any goal can be the winner of the match. Once again, the avalanche applied pressure that wasn’t enough to turn on goals, as both GT Comfer and Likonen lost the nets. This was followed by Logan O’Connor’s move to the penalty area due to the extreme stickiness, another disappointing penalty as it followed a truly intense and promising minute of play.
Even though the death sentence came at a critical time, the team did a great job of keeping the lightning out. Darcy Comber made a big block and Valery Neshushkin managed to get the disc out of the Colorado area.
Later, Colorado had another big chance, when Vasilevsky lost track of the disc, however, he still managed to get to it. Despite this moment of confusion, he seemed to have recovered from his uncharacteristically uncertain play in the first period, making it difficult for the avalanche to get past him.
This period was all Colorado. Like the end of the second half, they had many chances but didn’t get them. They got an absolute gift at 18:36 when Pat Marron was called to postpone the match. The Power Game could not have come at a better time, but every attempt to put Avalanche on the Lightning net has been rejected. With 36 seconds left in strong play, the game would have been overtime.
Avalanche won a grim showdown and prepared the disc perfectly. Tampa managed to clear the ball, but Cal Makar regained possession of the disc in favor of Devon Toyos and Nathan McKinnon. The force’s run time is over, and Darcy Comber makes a very decisive rescue.
In a beautiful moment of hockey, Valery Neshushkin prepared the ball for Andrei Burakovsky, who scored the winning goal in the 1:23 minute.
It was a well deserved win for Colorado. It was only a minute that they lost control of the match which cost them their lead, so having a chain lead at home seemed like the best result ever.
Andrei Vasilevsky was not playing like we know him, certainly in the first period. Even though he seems to be reliving some of his moments, it’s definitely something to watch out for. Having said that, Avalanche can’t count on him to play like that going forward. It was uncharacteristic and I’m sure with a two-day break, he’ll go into the next game with great focus.
Valeri Nichushkin played very well and deserved every point he got, more than that to be honest. If he can continue to play like he did tonight, he will be a true team maker and they absolutely need him.
The final match continues, and the second match will take place on Saturday 18th June at 6:00 PM GMT.