The Lightning will be competing for the Stanley Cup title for the second time in a row
Yanni Gourde’s second period goal on Friday night lifted the Tampa Bay Lightning to their second consecutive Stanley Cup victory over the New York Islanders.
Gourde scored while the Lightning were down. New York was playing in a 0-0 powerplay game. They were trying to jumpstart their offense, but it was unsuccessful. Anthony Cirelli intercepted a puck and found a cutting Gourde, who scored past Semyon Varlamov, Islanders goalie.
Game 7 was won by the Lightning, 1-0.
Gourde scored his fifth playoff goal and it was the first shorthanded goal by a Lightning player in Game 7.
Andrei Vasilevskiy, Lightning goalie, stopped all 18 New York shots. Varlamov saved 30 shots for the Islanders in Tampa’s 31 shots.
After the game, Lightning coach Jon Cooper stated that “it’s becoming a broken record” and added, “It’s not how many people put in the net. It’s how many keep out.” It’s hard to learn this lesson, especially with the new players and the skill, as well as the new rules that allow for skating and scoring. It’s all about protecting when you reach the playoffs.
Steven Stamkos, Tampa’s sports editor, said Vasilevskiy was the “best player” in the world.
In the Stanley Cup Final, the Lightning will face the Montreal Canadiens. This will be Tampa Bay’s second consecutive attempt at the Lord Stanley’s Cup. The Dallas Stars won the title last season, beating Tampa Bay.
The Lightning will be looking to become the first team to win back to back titles since the Pittsburgh Penguins did so in 2016 and 2017.
Monday night is the Stanley Cup Final Game 1.