The New York Islanders faceoff against the Tampa Bay Lightning in game one of the Eastern Conference Finals. Here’s everything to know about the matchup.
For the first time in 27 years the New York Islanders will be playing in the Eastern Conference Finals and puck drop is set for 8 p.m. In simple terms, the blue and orange are only four wins away from advancing to the Stanley Cup Final, but there is no easy task in front of them.
The always tough Tampa Bay Lightning are the only team in the east standing in the Islanders way of making history. Oddly enough, the Isles won two out of three games in the season series against the Bolts.
The only adjustment that both teams will have to make is they are playing in a new arena. Rogers Place in Edmonton will be hosting the rest of the Stanley cup Playoffs.
The Islanders are flying high after dominating game seven on Saturday night against the Flyers. They outplayed Philadelphia in all aspects of the game, en route to an impressive 4-0 win.
The Lightning are coming off a series where they dismantled the best regular-season team in the NHL, the Boston Bruins, four games to one. In their most impressive performance of the series, the Bolts beat Boston 7-1 in game three.
The Islanders will be the away team tonight. The Islanders will look to shut down Tampa’s high powered offense. The Islanders are 11-0 when they allow two or less goals, but are 0-5 when opposing teams score three or more.
Tale of the Tape
The Islanders come into today as the underdogs, courtesy of the Action network.
This should come as no surprise to anyone. The Islanders are coming off a tough seven game series against the Flyers and only had two nights of rest coming into tonight’s game. While Tampa’s last game was one week ago today.
I expect the Islanders to play simple, physical and play their shut down defensive game. They need to limit their turnovers to have success in this game and in the series.
The underdogs are a good play in this one!
New York Islanders 0-0
The Islanders made some changes going into game seven and they paid off big time:
The first major change the Isles made was they gave Thomas Greiss the start in net. Greiss played extremely solid, stopped all 16 shots faced and got the shutout.
It is projected the Islanders will not make any changes to their game seven lineup and Greiss will get the start tonight.
The Islanders are projected to lineup like this:
Tampa Bay Lightning 0-0
Tampa has kept their lineup consistent over the postseason. They do like to dress the unconventional eleven forwards and seven defensemen.
The Bolts have been without their star center Steven Stamkos, but that is no issue for them. They are led by Brayden Point. Point is an electric player who’s speed and elusiveness makes him so tough to play against. He has six goals, 12 assists and 18 points in 13 postseason games.
The only questionable player in the Tampa’s lineup is Nikita Kucherov. Kucherov suffered an injury in game five against the Bruins and returned to practicing with the team on September 3rd, so he is expected to play tonight on the first line.
It is expected Andrei Vasilevskiy will be in net for tonight’s matchup. The six foot three Russian has played in all of Tampa’s playoff games and has posted an impressive 1.91 goals against average.
The Lightning are projected to lineup like this:
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Where to Catch the Game
TV: NBCSN, CBC, SN, TVAS
Radio: 88.7FM 103.9FM 98.7FM
*All Stats Provided by the NHL*