|Tampa Bay Lightning goalie Dwayne Roloson (35) celebrates with fellow goalie Mike Smith, who took over for Roloson in the first period, after Tampa Bay's 5-3 win against Boston Bruins in Game 4 of the NHL hockey Stanley Cup playoffs Eastern Conference finals, Saturday, May 21, 2011, in Tampa, Fla. (AP Photo/Phelan M. Ebenhack) |
Dwayne Roloson has been a solid netminder for the Bolts since they acquired him midseason and is a large part of the reason Tampa has made it this far in the postseason.
But after the Bruins chased him from the Game 4 for the second time this series, and backup Mike Smith came in for three perfect periods of play (over two games), it’s not unreasonable to consider a goalie change come puck drop on Monday.
“We've got a goaltender that came in relief and he's done really well. So every time we ask him to come in, he's played well, and we've got a goaltender that has taken us here that knows how to win and knows how to bounce back,” Lightning head coach Guy Boucher said this afternoon.
When asked if Roloson would get the nod, Boucher answered simply, “Roloson is getting ready for tomorrow.”
Not only did Boucher not have a definitive answer on his goaltending situation, he also couldn’t give a yes or no on forward Steve Downie’s availability for tomorrow night’s game.
Downie went hard into the end boards courtesy of a Nathan Horton
check at 17:25 of the second period in Saturday afternoon’s Game 4. Horton went to the box for boarding while Downie picked up a minor penalty for diving. Downie did not return to the game.
“It's day-to-day. And we'll see tomorrow. We have to wait,” Boucher said of Downie’s ability to play in Game 5.
Despite the goaltending challenges and the injury to Downie, who has 2-10-12 totals in the playoffs, the Lightning were able to come out victorious on Saturday afternoon, knotting the series at two with the 5-3 victory.
Boston lead 3-0 early, but thanks in large part to the heroics of Teddy Purcell, who notched Tampa’s first two goals of the game, the Bolts were able to climb out of the hole and add on two more for the victory.
“Obviously, you feel good about your players feeling good about themselves,” Boucher said of Purcell. “But I think the reality now is that every game, we get a different hero.
“We’re happy some players stepped up,” he added. “But we can't be satisfied with anything or anybody.”