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.
Vegas Golden Knights 4, Winnipeg Jets 2 (VGK leads series 2-1)
The scales have tipped in the favor of the Vegas Golden Knights in the Western Conference Final as they topped the Winnipeg Jets 4-2 in Game 3. The “Terrific Trio” line kicked off the first period on the right foot for the Golden Knights as Jonathan Marchessault netted his seventh goal of the postseason to open the scoring less than a minute in, and Marc-Andre Fleury led the way with 33 saves, including a pair of show-stoppers on Jets forward Mark Scheifele.
In the second period, Scheifele, with the help of linemate Blake Wheeler, tied the game at one. But Vegas would counter attack with a strong offensive push, with James Neal scoring just twelve seconds later and Alex Tuch getting on the board two minutes after that to give the Golden Knights a two goal lead.
Just 18 seconds into the third period, Scheifele tapped a goal in off a beautiful feed from Kyle Connor as he sent it across the crease from behind the net. With just a one goal lead, Fleury held the fort for the Golden Knights making a flurry of saves throughout the period. After a great team defensive effort, Marchessault would add another into the empty net as the clock wound down to secure the 4-2 win for Vegas. The team no one believed in to start the season is now just two wins away from the Stanley Cup Final. - Justin Lape
Tampa Bay Lightning at Washington Capitals (WAS leads 2-1)
8:00 p.m. ET, NBCSN
- Bolts Big Three Look to Continue Breakout: Game 3 featured the awakening of what generally is considered the top three skaters for the Lightning, as Steven Stamkos, Nikita Kucherov, and Victor Hedman each scored and combined for a total of seven points in the Game 3 win. The Lightning hope that is the spark they need to get back on track and even the series in Game 4 before returning home to Tampa for Game 5.
- Backstrom Back? While he is still suffering from the hand injury sustained in the previous round versus the Penguins, Nicklas Backstrom is nearing a return to the Capitals lineup. When he returns, they have made it clear that he will not partake in the faceoff dot, but the return of the 71-point forward would certainly increase the potency and depth of the Washington attack. If not Thursday, expect Backstrom back on the ice with the next few games.
- Swing Game: While certainly all games in a playoff series are important, this Game 4 is certainly set to provide a massive swing in fortunes. With a win at home the Capitals can head back to Tampa with a chance to close the series out in their first of three potential shots. If the Lightning are able to snatch Game 4, they would have undone all of the incredible work of the Capitals in Games 1 and 2, and would return to Tampa with home ice advantage restored in a 2-2 series. The dynamic of this series will largely be shaped by the outcome of Game 4, so expect an extra notch in the level of intensity from what has already been seen in this series. - Andy House