I forgot how stressful playoff hockey is. I became a Tampa Bay Lightning fan back in 2014 when my friend started working for them.
In the all-Florida first round matchup between the Tampa Bay Lightning and Florida Panthers, tonight’s game one was must see TV. It was the game of the day in the NHL playoffs.
These two teams don’t like each other, which means the hockey will be excellent.
Nikita Kucherov, who last played a game in the Stanley Cup Finals last September, played his first game of the season tonight coming back from offseason hip surgery. Kucherov had a heck of a game, scoring two goals but quite frankly he could of had four goals.
Steven Stamkos also returned from injury tonight to play his first game since April 8th. So everyone is back in town, the band is back together.
This Tampa Bay team is fun to watch, and quite frankly has been fun to watch for the last seven years.
I was joking with my cousin earlier in the day on whether we’ll have another five-overtime marathon game tonight to open up the playoffs just like in August when the Lightning/Columbus Blue Jackets first round, game one, game went to five OT’s.
With about four minutes left in the game, the scored tied 4-4, my cousin texted me saying “maybe?!?!” in reference to a potential marathon game.
But Brayden Point scored on a breakaway with 1:14 left in the third period to give the Bolts a 5-4 lead, which ended up being the final score.
Brayden Point scored so many big goals and game winners in the playoffs last year, it seemed fitting for him to score the game winner to open up the Stanley Cup Playoffs for Tampa Bay tonight.
I was breathing a sigh of relief when he scored, because otherwise I’d probably still be watching the fourth overtime right now.
Game 2 of the series will be on Tuesday, May 18, from Sunrise, Florida inside the BB&T Center. Puck drop is scheduled for 7:00 PM (Central Time) and will be televised on CNBC.