The Pittsburgh Penguins had the chance to become the first team to advance to the second round, but Columbus managed to eke out a win last night to stay alive. On Wednesday night, the St. Louis Blues and Anaheim Ducks will get their chance to complete their respective series sweeps against the Minnesota Wild and Calgary Flames. In other words, we might be down to 15 or even 14 teams before the night's done.
In the meantime though, let's take a look at Tuesday's action.
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RANGERS 2 CANADIENS 1
Series tied at 2-2
The Rangers struggled at home during the regular season with a 21-16-4 record, leading to concerns about their ability to take advantage of the home ice advantage in the playoffs. Montreal managed to take Game 3 in New York, but at least the Rangers came back tonight to even the series. Game 5 and 7 will be back in Montreal, but you have to wonder if that's a bad thing for the Rangers.
Rick Nash found the back of the net at 4:28 of the second period and his marker proved to be the game winner. That was his second goal and point in the series.
Jesper Fast accounted for the Rangers' other goal. It was his first goal of the season and his fourth in 31 career postseason games.
Torrey Mitchell scored Montreal's only marker. He was a healthy scratch for the first two games of the series, but got into both Game 3 and last night's contest in a limited role.
Alexander Radulov assisted on Mitchell's goal. He's been superb so far in this series with two goals and six points in four games.
Carey Price stopped 30 of 32 shots on Tuesday. He has a 1.65 GAA and .942 save percentage in four playoff starts.
Henrik Lundqvist has stayed right with Price all series long though. He kicked out 23 of 24 shots to pick up the win in Game 4. Overall in the first round he has a 1.89 GAA and .944 save percentage.
BLUE JACKETS 5 PENGUINS 4
Pittsburgh leads series 3-1
This is just the third postseason for Columbus in the history of its franchise and the Blue Jackets have yet to win a series. They probably won't manage to pull off the rare reverse sweep against Pittsburgh this year to break that trend, but at least Columbus has guaranteed itself a little more playoff action and that experience might help the squad in future years.
Columbus had a 3-0 lead by 4:48 of the second period thanks to goals from Jack Johnson, Josh Anderson, and Markus Nutivaara. For each of those players it was his first goal of the 2017 playoffs.
Boone Jenner scored the game-winning goal and registered an assist. Those were his first points of the series, but he has four goals and seven points in 10 career playoff games.
William Karlsson also had a goal and an assist for the Blue Jackets. The assist was the 24-year-old's first career playoff point.
Phil Kessel assisted on three of the Penguins' four goals. That gives him a goal and six points in four games.
Evgeni Malkin registered a pair of assists. He has two goals and leads the league with eight points in the postseason.
Sergei Bobrovsky stopped 27 of 31 Penguins shots. He's been roughed up by Pittsburgh consistently in this series, giving him a 3.61 GAA and .891 save percentage in four starts.
Marc-Andre Fleury surrendered five goals on 34 shots. He limited Columbus to just two goals over the first two games, but the Blue Jackets have scored nine goals on him in their last two contests.
OILERS 7 SHARKS 0
Series tied at 2-2
After three really close games to open the series, this one obviously really got away from Edmonton. San Jose took the lead just 15 seconds into the contest and just kept piling on from there. Game 5 will be a big test for the Oilers, not just because it's obviously a key game, but also because we'll get to see how the young group responds to just a potentially demoralizing loss.
After earning back-to-back shutouts against San Jose, Talbot was lit up in this one. He allowed five goals on 24 shots in just 32:52 minutes before being pulled. Laurent Brossoit stepped in, but let in another two goals on eight shots.
Joe Pavelski scored two goals, including the game winner, and registered an assist. That brings him up to four points in this series.
Logan Couture netted his first and second goals of the series. He has 30 goals and 68 points in 84 career playoff contests.
Patrick Marleau found the back of the net and registered an assist. He had been held off the scoresheet in the first three games of the first round.
Martin Jones needed to make 23 saves to post the shutout. He has a 1.24 GAA and .950 save percentage in four playoff starts.
Edmonton's Patrick Maroon fired a team-high four shots on goal. He's up to 10 SOG in the series, but he doesn't have a goal yet.