In 2018, the Columbus Blue Jackets opened the playoffs with back-to-back wins in Washington. The Blue Jackets didn’t win another postseason game that year and the Capitals went on the raise the Stanley Cup. If you’ve already heard that story countless times in the hours since Columbus earned a 5-1 victory over Tampa Bay, it’s because it’s so important for both sides to keep in mind.
The Lightning need to cling onto that hope. It’s been a long time since Tampa Bay had to deal with any real adversity. They won 62 regular season games this season, which means that the Lightning haven’t been playing in games that truly mattered for a while now. On the Blue Jackets side, they need to take what happened as a cautionary tale. Those that were part of that collapse can hold onto it and come out that much harder in Game 3 to keep history from repeating itself.
Of course, Tampa Bay isn’t the only team that has found itself down 2-0. The Penguins and Jets have also dropped back-to-back games, with Winnipeg being the other team to lose both contests at home. So far only Vegas has managed to answer back after dropping the series opener.
GAME 2: COLUMBUS 5 TAMPA BAY 1 (Blue Jackets lead series 2-0)
Matt Duchene had the biggest game of his admittedly still short playoff career. He scored a goal and registered three assists.
Zach Werenski had a Gordie Howe hat trick that included the game-winning goal. He’s up to three points in two games in Round 1.
Sergei Bobrovsky saved 23 of 24 Lightning shots. He maintained his shutout until 5:00 of the third period.
At the other end of the ice, Andrei Vasilevskiy surrendered five goals on 27 shots. That gives him a 4.58 GAA and .830 save percentage in the series.
The Lightning’s only goal was scored by Mikhail Sergachev. At the time it narrowed the Blue Jackets lead to 3-1 and for a brief moment seemed to shift the momentum of the game. That swing obviously didn’t last though.
GAME 2: NY ISLANDERS 3 PITTSBURGH 1 (Islanders lead series 2-0)
Pittsburgh struck first in this one thanks to a goal by Erik Gudbranson. It was his first goal and point in 15 career playoff games.
That was all Robin Lehner would allow though. He stopped 32 of 33 Penguins shots, bringing his total up to 73 of 77 shots in the series.
Jordan Eberle accounted for the game-winning goal. He’s gotten off to a great start in the 2019 playoffs with two goals and three points in two games.
Mathew Barzal assisted on two of the Islanders’ three goals. That gives him three points in two contests.
Matt Murray turned aside 31 of 34 shots on Friday. This loss can’t be blamed solely on him, but he didn’t bounce back from Game 1.
GAME 2: ST. LOUIS 4 WINNIPEG 3 (Blues lead series 2-0)
Oskar Sundqvist netted a pair of goals for the Blues. Those are his first two career playoff goals in four games.
The contest was tied at 3-3 going into the third period. Ryan O'Reilly broke the tie at 3:46 and the Blues managed to hang on from there.
Mark Scheifele scored a goal and registered an assist for Winnipeg. He has 15 goals and 23 points in 23 career playoff games.
Jordan Binnington saved 26 of 29 Jets shots. It wasn’t as good as his Game 1 performance, but it got the job done. It is worth adding that two of the Jets’ three goals were scored on the power play.
At the other end of the ice, Connor Hellebuyck stopped 28 of 32 shots. He’s allowed at least three goals in three of his last five games.
GAME 2: VEGAS 5 SAN JOSE 3 (Series even at 1-1)
Max Pacioretty scored a goal and registered an assist for Vegas. He has a goal and four points in two games in this series.
Mark Stone netted the game-winning goal. He scored it on a controversial goalie interference penalty, but that aside, he’s been amazing in the playoffs with three goals already.
Logan Couture had a goal and an assist for the Sharks. He also took that controversial goalie interference penalty that led to Stone’s game-winner.
Marc-Andre Fleury kicked out 34 of 37 shots. All three of the goals he allowed were scored in the span of just 2:09 minutes late in the first period.