The theme of this playoffs so far has been the unexpected happening. The Columbus Blue Jackets swept the Tampa Bay Lightning and the other second seed Wild Card team, the Colorado Avalanche, are just one game away from eliminating the top seed in the Western Conference.
Calgary held a 2-0 lead in the third period, but the Avalanche battled back and benefited from some untimely penalties on the Flames’ side late in the third frame. That combined with some heroics by Mikko Rantanen have put Colorado up 3-1 in the series.
Certainly the Flames still have hope, but in their franchise history they’ve never come back from a 3-1 deficit. At this point though, they have no choice but to try to make history, starting with Friday’s contest in Calgary.
GAME 4: BOSTON 6 TORONTO 4 (Series tied at 2-2)
David Pastrnak was quiet in the first three games of this series, but he stepped up with his first two goals of the playoffs. The markers were scored just 1:35 minutes apart and took the wind out of Toronto after the Leafs had clawed their way back from a 2-0 deficit.
Brad Marchand scored a goal and registered two assists for Boston. He’s up to two goals and six points in four playoff games.
Auston Matthews did he best for the Leafs with a pair of goals. That gives him three goals and four points in four games.
Frederik Andersen stopped 25 of 30 Bruins shots. Two of the five goals he allowed were scored during Bruins power plays.
At the other end of the ice, Tuukka Rask saved 38 of 42 shots. He faced at least 12 shots in every period, including 16 in the third frame.
GAME 4: DALLAS 5 NASHVILLE 1 (Series tied at 2-2)
Pekka Rinne had a terrible night. He allowed four goals on eight shots in 13:45 minutes before being yanked. Juuse Saros stopped 20 of 21 shots the rest of the way, but the damage was done. For what it’s worth, three of the four goals Rinne allowed were scored on Dallas power plays.
Roope Hintz got the scoring started for Dallas at 3:42 of the first period and found the back of the net again at 10:09 of the second frame. Those were his first two goals and points of the series.
John Klingberg assisted on three of the Stars’ five goals. He’s up to five assists in four playoff games.
Nashville’s lone goal was scored by Roman Josi. It was his second goal and point of the series.
Ben Bishop saved 34 of 35 Predators shots. That gives him a 1.98 GAA and .942 save percentage in Round 1.
GAME 4: COLORADO 3 CALGARY 2 (OT) (Avalanche lead series 3-1)
J.T. Compher got the Avalanche on the board at 8:10 of the third period. It was his second goal and third point in four games.
Mikko Rantanen took it from there. He netted the game-tying goal with just 2:50 left in the third and netted the winner at 10:23 of the overtime period. That gives him three goals and six points in four playoff contests.
Mike Smith saved 49 of 52 Avalanche shots. This is the second straight game where he’s faced over 50 shots. He has a 2.78 GAA and .931 save percentage in the series.
Philipp Grubauer stopped 35 of 37 shots Wednesday night. He’s allowed just two goals in each of his last three starts.