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Sunday, November 27, 2022

Nick Paul’s Courageous Winner Gives Lightning Life: ‘I Was Definitely Coming Back’

Tampa — The architect of Tampa Bay Find-A-Ways — as some in this steamy, stormy city has taken to call the local hockey club — was recently asked how bleak his threepart bid looked on May 12. Was being

The Toronto Maple Leafs had the champs on the ropes in Round 1. The Lightning were down 3-2 in the series and 3-2 in Game 6. Halfway through period 3.

The blood was in the water. But panic was not in the air.

“My take at the time was not so much that it was bleak. It was challenging. It also presented a great opportunity for us,” Lightning GM Julian Brycebois reflected, calm as everyone in his circle.

“This is what this final is going to be. Colorado is going to be a part of a challenge. They are a phenomenal team. They have talent in every position. They probably have a bunch of all-time greats when it comes to All is said and done. They present a formidable challenge to us. At the same time, it is an incredible opportunity for our people.”

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The Lightning returned home after the most one-sided shutout in Cup Final history “We could have played for three weeks, and we couldn’t get one.” [goal]”Coach John Cooper said of the explosion of Game 2) and, for the third time, the series was left behind by an avalanche.

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Leave nine unanswered goals in the championship, and the mood can quickly turn bad.

And yet, it was another chance for the resourceful champs to stay the course.

Bolt got the next from Anthony Cirelli, and the second from Ondrej Palt. Finally, after more than 136 minutes, an edge.

A foothold to start the exit from another deep hole, his crucial third in four series.

“We knew it was going to be too much of a winning game for us,” said captain Steven Stamkos, who set up the turn and snapped a spin-around beauty himself. “I thought we played like that tonight.”

In a 6-2 finish to the Avalanche their worst loss since the season, the Lightning threw 10 different skaters on the scoresheet. He chased down starter Darcy Kumper and backed up Pavel François.

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Bolts were wide and direct. All three are engaged in the zone.

Their marquee names sparked smart offensive plays, they were physical and feisty, and they closed up shop in their area by beating their opponents 27-12.

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“Total team effort. When it’s your turn, it’s your turn. You need to block a shot, there’s not a single guy on this team who’s afraid to do it. They’ll come up to it. You see it.” [Corey Perry] Tonight, he almost took one off the face, took it off the shoulder. It shows that everyone on this team is willing to do whatever it takes to win,” said Nick Paul.

“It’s winning hockey that’s it. Limiting turnover, moving legs, forming hard, loose pucks on forechecks. And from there, we were able to keep up the pace. ,

Stamkos said the bench took its collective breath in the first period, when Paul awkwardly collapsed and fell down the tunnel after this jolt from Josh Manson:

Returning to Period 2, his skating was painful to watch, with Paul scoring in his first shift.

“It was uplifting,” Cooper said.

Stamkos said, “People obviously get banged up, especially at this time of year, but in true hockey player fashion, he sucks it up and comes out and scores the final game-winner.”

“You can see how valuable he is to our team and all the little things he does, and obviously he scored some big goals for us in the finals. Game 7 in Toronto. Some of his best moments in these playoffs are.”

After scoring, Paul took another trip down the aisle to be checked for whatever ailment he had.

But he came back again and finished the game. There was never any doubt in his mind.

“No, I was definitely coming back,” said Paul.

Would anyone be surprised by now if the power comes back as well?

“I still think we’ve gotten better honestly. I thought it was a really good response tonight. We have a great crew there, and we’re proud to be there,” said Patrick Maroon.

“Play like it’s your last game, right?”

Fox Fast 5

• Due to a lower body injury, Brayden Point did not play for more than a month, playing games 1 and 2 in Denver. After that he was nowhere to be seen on Monday. His replacement, Riley Nash, skated a team-following 7:01. Cooper was silent when asked if Point had suffered a setback.

Nikita Kucherov’s health is equally concerned after this horrific cross-check from Devon Toes:

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Cooper was asked his views on the check.

The coach replied, “When you’re asked questions like these, you’re looking for an answer that everyone in the building already knows.” “It’s a contact sport, but people know what they’re doing. Smart, knowledgeable players know what they’re doing with their stick, and we all saw it.

Updates are expected Tuesday, but further depth in Tampa remains a concern.

• Hey, Nazam Qadri. Want to play Game 4?

• Despite the Lightning scoring their first 5-on-4 goal, special-team battles have become seriously one-sided.

Colorado already has five power-play markers and one shorthand goal. The AVS zips the puck around and looks deadly at almost every man-advantage.

“Special teams are huge, but I thought our five-on-five game tonight was a lot better,” Stamkos said. “So we have to be disciplined. He has a great power play.”

• Corey Perry became the first player in NHL history to score in the Stanley Cup Finals for four different clubs (Ducks, Stars, Canadiens and Lightning).

• Charles Barkley, a good friend of Cooper’s, told ABC that he called commissioner Gary Bateman directly to secure a pair of tickets to Game 3. Baller.

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