Tampa Bay Lightning vs. Boston Bruins 5/4/18, Prediction & Odds

AP Images

AP Images

A cheap slashing call on Krug in the first period was more mystifying when Marchand walked in on a possible tying breakaway right after Krug's goal and was hacked (an almost automatic penalty or even penalty shot) with no call.

In the first five minutes of the second period with the Lightning already in somewhat of a defensive posture, the top two lines took all the shifts in the first five minutes of the period as Tampa Bay took several icings. They had all the pressure and were getting the calls. If they fall once again to Tampa Bay they may have dug a hole for themselves that they are unable to climb out of.

The Lightning are 29-16 when they serve fewer penalty minutes than their opponent and 32-19 in games where they serve fewer than 10 total penalty minutes. "It's 2-1, it's not over yet".

Tuukka Rask denied J.T. Miller's bid to keep the Bruins within striking distance. The under is 3-0-1 in the last four meetings in Boston.

And that isn't on Rask. It was also on their shift that the Lightning scored their first of four.

For Boston to get by Tampa in the series, they will need to establish their identity early in games from here on out. We shouldn't expect a loaded roster that made it to the Stanley Cup Final a season ago to completely lie down, but if they choose to do so, it clearly doesn't spell good news in Nashville. The Bruins have also seen enough of DeBrusk's game this postseason to realize that he's not going to simply stop trying because he's not with Krejci and Nash on line two, and Cassidy even tinkered with DeBrusk skating on line three with Riley Nash late in their Game 3 loss, too. What Steve Yzerman and Julien BriseBois are willing to do more than most is look past some of the attributes a player doesn't possess - be it size, pedigree or hype - and focus instead on those they do. There's going to be a lull from the crowd, but you've got to get it back. He would seem to present the boost to the offense the Bruins need as they try to even the series Friday night at TD Garden. And that lead is deserved. Braden Holtby has held his own against Matt Murray in net, and Alex Ovechkin is playing as though he wants to prove he's as clutch a player as Sidney Crosby is. After the debacle in game 1 which you could attribute to the long lay-off, Braydon Point has been playing some of his best hockey of the season. It may be a bit of a pivot point in the series. "I'm looking forward to an opportunity to do that [Friday]". We have to execute better within the abilities of the player, support it better, and not turn it over so we're having to break it out a second time after we do it the first time successfully. There's been two overtime toss-ups with each team winning once and now each team has whitewashed the other once after San Jose's 4-0 domination of the Vegas Golden Knights in Game 4 last night.

Meanwhile Martin Jones made 34 saves for his sixth career playoff shutout, leading the San Jose Sharks to a 4-0 victory over the visiting Vegas Golden Knights on Wednesday and levelling their Western Conference semifinal playoff series at two games apiece. It's 31-15 SU as the home team this season.

Growing animosity isn't the only reason why a best-of-seven series can be so fun.

This series is likely to come down to which goalie can make the biggest saves in the biggest moments.

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