Lightning’s Bishop silences Red Wings in hard fought Game 7


The Detroit Red Wings got off to a great start in Game 7 and had the seeming had the edge for most of the contest except where it mattered most. Detroit’s strong play never translated into a goal and Tampa Bay went on to earn a 2-0 victory.

Ben Bishop deserves a lot of credit for pushing the Lightning into the second round. He turned aside all 31 shots he faced and kept Tampa Bay in this game during a rough 40 minutes. Along the way the Red Wings had four opportunities with the man advantage, which is a big deal when you consider that they had the second-best ranked power play in the league during the regular season, but Bishop and Tampa Bay’s defense got through each one.

The scoreless tie was finally broken 3:58 minutes into the third frame when defenseman Braydon Coburn nailed a one-timer past Red Wings goalie Petr Mrazek. They had an opportunity to add an insurance goal late in the third, but it was disallowed due to matching penalties:

That proved to be moot though as the Lightning later sealed the deal with an empty netter from Anton Stralman.

Tampa Bay will now play the Canadiens for the second straight year. Last time Montreal beat the Lightning in four games, but Bishop was unavailable for that series. This time around the goaltender is healthy and heading to Montreal on a high note.

Video: Deadline acquisition Coburn breaks scoreless tie in third


Tampa Bay Lightning GM Steve Yzerman had to surrender quite a bit to the Philadelphia Flyers to acquire defenseman Braydon Coburn, but it’s paid off in a big way tonight.

With Game 7 between Tampa Bay and Detroit still scoreless in the third period, Coburn launched a big one-timer after being set up by Ryan Callahan. You can see that potentially decisive goal below:

The Red Wings outshot the Lightning nearly 2-to-1 in the first 40 minutes, but they couldn’t beat Tampa Bay goaltender Ben Bishop. Drew Miller had a golden opportunity though.

Garrison returns, Drouin makes playoff debut in Lightning Game 4 tweaks

After getting shutout by Detroit in Game 3 on Tuesday, the Tampa Bay Lightning are entering Thursday’s contest with a bit of a different look.

Defenseman Jason Garrison is ready to return from an upper-body injury that’s kept him on the sidelines for nearly a month now. He had four goals and 30 points in 70 contests with the Lightning this season. He’ll probably be paired up with Braydon Coburn. Rather than scratch a blueliner to make room with him, the Lightning are dressing seven defensemen.

Rookie Jonathan Drouin is also being inserted into the lineup for what will be his career playoffs debut. The 20-year-old had four goals and 32 points in 70 contests during the regular season.

He’ll likely play alongside J.T. Brown and Brian Boyle on the fourth line. To make room, 36-year-old Brenden Morrow has been taken out of the lineup. The veteran of 991 regular season contests and an additional 97 playoff games was limited to eight points in 2014-15.

Coburn in, Drouin likely out for Bolts in opener versus Wings


Braydon Coburn will return from injury for the Lightning in Game 1 against Detroit tonight, but prized rookie Jonathan Drouin looks as though he’ll be dropped from the lineup.

Those were two of the big developments out of Tampa Bay this morning. Coburn, sidelined since Mar. 10 with a lower-body ailment, will play just his fifth game in a Bolts uniform after being acquired from Philly at the Mar. 2 trade deadline, an important returnee for a blueline that’s missing Jason Garrison.

For Drouin, the news is less positive.

With a wealth of talent up front and all forwards healthy, Bolts head coach Jon Cooper will sit the 20-year-old in what would be his first-ever Stanley Cup playoff game. Cooper will opt to roll with an “energy” unit as his fourth line — Brenden Morrow, Brian Boyle and J.T. Brown — and apparently doesn’t want to insert Drouin in the top three lines at the risk of disrupting chemistry:

Alex Killorn-Steven Stamkos-Ryan Callahan

Ondrej Palat-Tyler Johnson-Nikita Kucherov

Vladislav Namestnikov-Valtteri Filppula-Cedric Paquette

That said, it’s highly likely we see Drouin at some point in the playoffs given how much he played during the regular season. The third overall pick at the ’13 Draft appeared in 70 games and racked up 32 points, averaging over 13 minutes per night.

Playoff infirmary report: Who’s hurt, who’s coming back?


Patrick Kane, Chicago (broken clavicle)

Originally thought to be out for 12 weeks, Kane cut his recovery time nearly in half and will suit up for Game 1 of Chicago’s series against Nashville. Kane hasn’t played since Feb. 24 but was lighting it up — as per usual — prior to getting hurt, with 64 points in 61 games.

Mark Giordano, Calgary (torn biceps)

There was some optimism earlier in the week when the Flames captain resumed skating and told reporters “I feel like hopefully the rehab is going better than expected.” That said, the injury and subsequent surgery came with a 4-5 month recovery period, so any possible Giordano comeback would come in much later playoff rounds.

Max Pacioretty, Montreal (upper-body)

Pacioretty, Montreal’s leading goalscorer with 37, has been out since getting knocked into the boards versus Florida in the third-final game of the season. He’s been ruled out of Game 1 against Ottawa and Habs head coach Michel Therrien is playing it coy about a potential return date.

Kris Letang, Pittsburgh (concussion)

Letang is unlikely to return this season following a hit from Arizona captain Shane Doan in late March.

Christian Ehrhoff, Pittsburgh (concussion)

Though he’s been cleared for contact, the Pens d-man won’t be available for Game 1. Neither will fellow blueliner Derrick Pouliot.

Travis Hamonic, New York Islanders (undisclosed)

Details on the d-man’s health are far and few between. Will the Isles say what his injury is? No. Have they given a timetable for return? No. All we really know is that Hamonic hasn’t been on the ice at all since taking a hipcheck from Pittsburgh’s Rob Scuderi last Friday, and his status is uncertain.

Kevin Klein, New York Rangers (broken arm)

Out since mid-March, the Rangers blueliner was originally expected to be ready for the playoffs — but now it sounds like his Game 1 status is in question. Klein also didn’t practice on Wednesday, casting further doubt on his ability to suit up for the opener against Pittsburgh.

Jason Garrison, Tampa Bay (upper-body)

When the Bolts d-man was hurt in late March, the club put a 3-4 week timetable on his return. As such, Garrison likely won’t be available for the early parts of the Detroit series; that said, the Lightning did get some good news as fellow blueliners Braydon Coburn and Andrej Sustr looked as though they’d be back in.

Mike Fisher, Nashville (lower-body)

The veteran Preds center missed the final two games of the year, but will draw in for Game 1 against Chicago.

John Gibson, Anaheim (upper-body)

After picking up a knock in practice, Gibson didn’t skate on Wednesday — which points to Frederik Andersen getting the start for Anaheim in Game 1 of its series against the Jets. At this point, it’s worth monitoring this situation to see if Gibson is even healthy enough to back up, as the Ducks have recalled veteran Jason LaBarbera from AHL Norfolk.

Mathieu Perreault, Winnipeg (lower body)

Injured in last Thursday’s shootout loss to Colorado, Perreault hasn’t been practicing or skating but, per Jets head coach Paul Maurice, he is getting better.

“We don’t want to turn it into a bigger problem than it is,” Maurice said, per the Free Press. “He’ll get back out on the ice. He may play based on how he feels after he skates. I expect him to go sooner rather than later.”

Justin Abdelkader, Detroit (hand)

Injured blocking a shot late in the season, Abdelkader is listed as questionable for Game 1 against Tampa Bay. His official status will be announced following the morning skate.