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Stanley Cup Daily 4/29: Not Infallible After All

A year of firsts for the Golden Knights continues with another: their first-ever playoff loss.

NHL: Stanley Cup Playoffs-San Jose Sharks at Vegas Golden Knights Stephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sports

Each day during the Stanley Cup Playoffs, Canes Country recaps the night before, previews the games for that night, and gives you game times and broadcast information.

Saturday’s Recaps

San Jose Sharks v Vegas Golden Knights - Game Two Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images

San Jose Sharks 4, Vegas Golden Knights 3 (Series tied 1-1)

Logan Couture scored a power-play goal at 5:13 of the second overtime period to cap off the San Jose Sharks’ 4-3 comeback victory over the Vegas Golden Knights at T-Mobile Arena Saturday night. The loss is Vegas’ first in these playoffs, and marks the first time that goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury has conceded more than two goals in a single game.

Couture collected a cross-ice feed from Kevin Labanc on the Sharks’ seventh power play of the night and wired a shot over the outstretched pad of Fleury to knot the second-round series at one win apiece. Couture’s tally came after Jonathan Marchessault had his goal, which would have given Vegas the victory, disallowed in the first overtime for goaltender interference.

After taking Game 1 by storm with a 7-0 win, the Golden Knights appeared ready to do more damage as William Karlsson netted a goal in the first period and another in the opening moments of the second, but Brent Burns sandwiched Couture’s first marker of the contest with a pair of his own as the middle frame progressed, sending the Sharks into intermission ahead 3-2.

Nate Schmidt then leveled scores once more in the third period with a long-range one-timer that squeaked through netminder Martin Jones, and the teams remained deadlocked until Couture found twine once more in the second overtime.

Game 3 is set for Monday night in San Jose. - Peter Dewar

NHL: Stanley Cup Playoffs-Boston Bruins at Tampa Bay Lightning Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Boston Bruins 6, Tampa Bay Lightning 2 (BOS leads series 1-0)

Tuukka Rask and Rick Nash were two Bruins recieving heavy scrutiny after the seven-game first round series against Toronto. Yesterday, they appeared to turn over a new leaf.

In just one game, Nash matched his point total from last series, scoring two goals before the second intermission. Rask also showed up, making 34 saves and stopping all but two shots on Boston’s way to a 6-2 beatdown of the top-seeded Tampa Bay Lightning. A bizarre turn of events around the halfway point made the game more interesting than it should have been, as Tuukka Rask made a save and subsequently lost his skate blade, which hung him out to dry and the Lightning capitalized to make it 3-2. (maybe link the video?)

The Bruins went into the third leading by only one, but the top line quickly put things out of reach. Patrice Bergeron and Brad Marchand scored, helping their line with David Pastrnak to reach 11 points in the game, and Jake DeBrusk would put one in the empty net to ice the cake. The teams are back in action tomorrow night in Tampa for Game 2. - Andrew Ahr

Sunday’s Previews

Pittsburgh Penguins v Washington Capitals - Game One Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

Pittsburgh Penguins at Washington Capitals (PIT leads series 1-0)

3:00 p.m. ET, NBC

  1. Play the Full 60 Minutes: The Caps played a complete game for 55 minutes on Thursday, but for a five-minute span in the third period they allowed three goals that gave away the game. Against a team as loaded as the Pittsburgh Penguins, playing at 100% for the entire game is a necessity because they have the ability to make you pay at any moment. If the Caps can get sustained pressure against Matt Murray and the Penguins, they can tie the series going to Pittsburgh.
  2. Keep up the Pressure: Though the Pens were outshot in the game, they created tons of high-danger scoring chances. They hit the post multiple times throughout the game, and forced Braden Holtby to make incredible saves to keep the Caps in the game. If the Pens offense can keep up the same pressure in Game 2 it won’t matter how their defense or goaltending plays. Evgeni Malkin is a game-time decision, and if he can play it brings a whole new level to the Penguins offense.
  3. Stay at Home Defense: The Caps have great offensive defensemen in John Carlson and Dmitry Orlov. Because of this, the entire defense corps plays a creative style that lends itself to jumping into the rushes and making aggressive pinch plays in the offensive zone. However, against the skill of the Penguins, the defense needs to play with a more conservative approach. If they pinch or come too far down in the offensive zone, they leave themselves very vulnerable to odd-man rushes and even more high-danger chances. - Zeke Lukow

Winnipeg Jets v Nashville Predators - Game One Photo by Frederick Breedon/Getty Images

Winnipeg Jets at Nashville Predators (WPG leads series 1-0)

7:00 p.m. ET, NBCSN

  1. The Last Line of Defense: It was a story of two goalies in Winnipeg’s Game 1 victory. While Connor Hellebuyck put up one of the best goalie efforts of the playoffs thus far, Pekka Rinne allowed three goals on 16 shots and was pulled in the third period. Rinne needs a strong bounce back performance in Game 2 in order for the Preds to travel north with a home ice split. Jusse Saros had a great year in a backup role, and while it’s unlikely that an elite goalie like Rinne gets chased out of the net again in Game 2, he will be there if needed.
  2. Putting Game 1 in the Rear View: The Predators will need to do what San Jose successfully did in their series against the Vegas Golden Knights - put Game 1 in the past and put all their focus on getting a key victory in Game 2. Nashville’s offensive attack was dangerous throughout on Friday, but the stellar goaltending of Hellebuyck and a handful of bounces that went in the road team’s direction kept them at bay offensively. They’ll need to keep their feet on the gas and earn their bounces on Sunday. They have to remain confident and keep doing the things that made them so successful in the regular season.
  3. Pressure on the Jets: The final score ended up in Winnipeg’s favor in Game 1, but outside of an aforementioned marvelous outing from their starter, there isn’t a whole lot of good to take from it. They have to find ways to get their offense rolling on a consistent basis against the best defensive core in hockey. They have to penetrate that defense and use their speed to create opportunities. Skill is no issue for Winnipeg, but they might not get bailed out by their goalie forever, and when the bounces don’t go their way in the defensive end, they’ll need to find ways to get bounces offensively. They didn’t in Game 1, outchanced 87-39 in shot attempts. This is a huge game for the Jets and, if they can eek out another road win, they’ll be in the driver’s seat big time heading back to MTS Place for games 3 and 4. - Brett Finger