For additional insight into the Eastern Conference First Round series between the Tampa Bay Lightning and Detroit Red Wings NHL.com has enlisted the help of Claude Noël to break down the action. Noel will be checking in throughout the Stanley Cup Playoffs.
Noel was coach for the Winnipeg Jets from 2011-2014 and interim coach of the Columbus Blue Jackets in 2009-10. He also coached many years in the minor leagues, including the American Hockey League. Noel a forward during his playing days, had 138 points in 353 regular-season games in the AHL, and he played seven games in the NHL with Washington Capitals in 1979-80.
The ebbs and flows of every hockey game are inevitable, but the fine line between winning and losing usually comes down to which team is able to take advantage of that golden opportunity when it presents itself.
Claude Noel believes the Tampa Bay Lightning failed to capitalize on that moment when presented a 5-on-3 power play for 56 seconds early in the second period of an eventual 3-0 loss against the Detroit Red Wings in Game 3 of their Eastern Conference First Round series Tuesday. The win gave the Red Wings a 2-1 lead in the best-of-7 with Game 4 set for Thursday at Joe Louis Arena in Detroit (7 p.m. ET; CBC, NBCSN, TVA Sports, FS-F, FS-D).
"I felt Detroit really carried the play and was really coming at Tampa Bay hard early in the second and the Lightning weren't able to generate any offense, but then they got the power play and then a 5-on-3 advantage," Noel said. "That to me was one of the turning points of the game or could have been. Tampa did get a shot off the crossbar (by Tyler Johnson), but beyond that had a couple of non-executed plays that resulted in not getting much done on the 5-on-3. I thought that could have been a turning point that they could take advantage."