The Tampa Bay Lightning’s “Triplets” line has done something remarkable: knock Steven Stamkos off the marquee, at least for a little while.
The scary thing for the New York Rangers – and maybe the Anaheim Ducks and Chicago Blackhawks – is that the Lightning’s “other” big combo is really starting to generate points and havoc, as well. With Ryan Callahan still recovering from emergency surgery and Valtteri Filppula a little less noticeable on the line, the duo of Stamkos and Alex Killorn is being dubbed “The Twins” by the Ottawa Sun.
There’s no word on how Henrik and Daniel Sedin feel about such a nickname, as Stamkos stands out is pretty easy to distinguish from just about any other player, really:
Granted, Ondrej Palat, Nikita Kucherov and Tyler Johnson don’t look alike, either. Instead, they blend together by being so dominant and cohesive, and the startling thing about the last game-and-change is that Killorn has been as impressive as Stamkos.
Jon Cooper singled Killorn and Palat out in Game 3, in particular:
Of course, it’s scarier for opponents to see Stamkos on his game, and he definitely asserted himself on Wednesday. His all-out-effort on his 2-1 goal really made a statement:
In the past two games, Stamkos has two goals and two assists. Killorn has been even more productive with three goals and two helpers, and it’s more than that, as his overwhelming Game 3 effort included nine shots on goal.
If this keeps up, opponents face the unsettling “pick your poison” proposition: do you focus on “The Triplets,” Killorn – Stamkos or risk spreading yourself thin? Call each line what you want, but on their best days, they amount to a matchup nightmare.