Game 4 didn’t start well for Cal Clutterbuck. Just 12:34 into the opening frame the New York Islanders fourth-line winger took a roughing call against Nikita Kucherov. It was a fair call by the refs, there’s no reason for Clutterbuck to do what he did there.
Giving the Tampa power play – which is operating at 25% in this series – a chance to get an early lead was not a good idea. Keep in mind, the winner of every game in this series got on the board first.
Thankfully, the Islanders put up an incredible kill to keep the Lightning off the board. But Clutterbuck knew he had to make up for that potentially critical mistake.
Cal Clutterbuck puts on a big show in 3-2 Game 4 win for New York Islanders
Clutterbuck had the game of his life after that penalty. He’d finish with six shots on goal, three hits, one block, and finish +2. He was fourth in CF% and second for SCF%. Oh, and he picked up two primary assists on the night.
His first came off a simple decision to toss the puck on the net. The rebound fell to Barzal who was all alone on the far side and buried the puck into an empty net. Pucks on net, eh?
Four minutes later he was at it again. This time, Clutterbuck creates a turnover after harassing Point in the Tampa D-zone and immediately heads to the front of the net where he redirects an Adam Pelch bank shot on Vasilevskiy. Just like his shot-assist on Barzal’s goal, this rebound finds Martin who does his best Jordan Eberle impression by tossing a backhand on the net for his first of the postseason.
Look, I know that Ryan Pulock earns the top honors for tonight. His game-saving goal at the very end of the game was legendary. But Cal Clutterbuck put up a hell of a game after starting so cold.
Series Not Over
Thanks to Clutterbuck the Islanders tied the series at 2-2 with a 3-2 win over the Lightning in Game 4. Now the series goes to Tampa for Game 5.