Welcome to Match 4 of the Stanley Cup Final between Colorado Avalanche and Tampa Bay Lightning. The Avalanche lead the series to the best of 7 series 2-1.
NHL.com Senior Editorial Director Shawn P. Roarke is at the Amalie Arena in Tampa to deliver all the sights, sounds and action of Game 4.
8:25 PM ET
It’s a dream start for the Lightning to score 36 seconds of play. Antonio Cirelli he scored in an open net on a rebound after the Colorado goalkeeper Darcy Kuemper he made four rescues and lost his helmet in the process.
Cirelli also scored Tampa Bay’s first goal in Game 3. His goal in Game 4 marks the first time the Lightning have scored first in four games in this series.
8:20 pm ET
The game takes 36 seconds and the Lightning are already on the scoreboard, taking the lead 1-0 on a goal from Anthony Cirelli.
Nazem Kadri he is inside and playing in the second row with the center Gabriele Landeskog And Valeri Nichushkin on its wings.
JT Comper scrolls down to the center of the third line e Nicolas Aube-Kubelwho played 6:36 in Game 3, is scratched.
There was a bit of a wrinkle in the Corey Perry Warm-up routine for Game 4. The Tampa Bay forward was not the last off the ice, as is tradition, heading for the locker room tunnel just before Ondrej Palat. Additionally, his attempt to score the Colorado cleared door was thwarted as his shot hit another puck and each slipped off the posts. It wasn’t a great hockey shot, but Perry may have a future in curling.
As in the case of Game 3, the pre-match ceremony was completely over the top. Highlights, as always, were the rendition of the sung national anthem Sonya Bryson-Kirksey, as well as the live interpretation of Vo Williams’ “Thunder & Lightning” and the home-ice video essay narrated by the WWE star. Titus O’Neal.
7:50 pm ET
The warm-up for Game 4 is in progress.
Nazem Kadri has taken the ice for Avalanche and looks to make his Stanley Cup final debut after missing his last three games with a hand injury.
Nikita Kucherov is on the ice for the Lightning, but Brayden point is absent as expected. On Wednesday, Tampa Bay manager Jon Cooper said Point would be eliminated for Game 4, but he is not ready to rule out the striker for the series.
Darcy Kuemper drove Avalanche out for the warm-up and remains the owner. There was some speculation that the backup Pavel Francouz could start after joining in Game 3. Kuemper conceded five goals from 22 shots.
Shout out to DJ Shannon for an eclectic array of music to lead the crowd into the warm-up. There was no Clutch (boo), but a good mix of arena rock and hip hop and some EDM.
We are just over an hour from the start of Race 4, which is fundamental for every team.
If Colorado win, they will have the opportunity to win the Stanley Cup on their home ice in Game 5 at the Ball Arena on Friday. If Tampa Bay can find a way to win, they have all the momentum after losing their first two games.
Avalanche could get some help with striker Nazem Kadri who could return after missing his last four games after injuring his hand during his first round of Game 3 against the Edmonton Oilers in the Western Conference final on 4 June.
Kadri has 14 points (six goals, eight assists) in 13 games in the 2022 Stanley Cup playoffs. He scored 87 points (28 goals, 59 assists) in 71 regular season games.
For the Lightning, striker Nikita Kucherov is expected to play after starting an injury in the third period of Game 3. Striker Brayden Point, however, is likely to miss his second consecutive game.
It’s a perfect night for hockey in Tampa; although it’s a little hotter and wetter as this New England native would like. Fans, who spill out onto the sidewalk of the legendary Hattricks Bar nearby and prepare the party outside the arena, are encouraged by their team’s performance in Race 3, suggesting another return to series, like the one they did in Eastern Conference final may be in sight.
The Lightning fell behind the New York Rangers 2-0 in the series and 2-0 in Game 3, but prevailed in six games.
We’ll be back in a while for the warm-up.