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Best of the Bolts: Final Four - Matchup 1

by Staff Writer / Tampa Bay Lightning

Voting in the first group of the Final Four starts at noon on August 29 and ends at noon on August 31. The matchup is listed below and you can vote as many times as you'd like for your favorite play.

TAMPA BAY BRACKET WINNER: EXTRA ATTACKER SINKS ISLANDERS

The New York Islanders held a lead three separate times against the Tampa Bay Lightning at the Barclays Center in Game 3 of their second round playoff series.

The Lightning had a response each time.

None, however, was as dramatic as Nikita Kucherov’s late-game equalizer with the Lightning net empty.

Tampa Bay was down to its last 50 seconds, the Isles clinging to a 4-3 lead as the Lightning brought on an extra attacker. The puck swung around the point to Jonathan Drouin, who maneuvered into the left circle while Kucherov skated into the slot. Drouin hit him with a pass, and Kucherov beat Thomas Greiss to the goalie’s stick side to tie the game 4-4 with 38.4 seconds to go.

The Lightning would need just 2:48 to win Game 3 in overtime.

The game-winner would have never happened though if not for Kucherov coming to the rescue.

And who knows how the series would have played out had the Islanders held on for the victory in Game 3.

LIGHTNING BRACKET WINNER: STOPPING AN AVALANCHE

The 19,092 fans at Amalie Arena barely had time to find their seats before Colorado forced Lightning goaltender Ben Bishop to make one of his finest saves of the season.

Just 15 seconds into the game, Colorado started a 3-on-1 break toward the Bolts’ goal. The Avalanche worked the puck to Matt Duchesne on the left post for a wide-open shot and sure goal.

Except Bishop dove across the net to knock the shot away with his stick.

Bishop’s save was so brilliant, Fox Sports Sun play-by-play announcer Rick Peckham’s voice cracked as he made the call.

The Lightning wouldn’t be so lucky as the game progressed, however, the Avalanche winning 2-1.

Final Four
Extra Attacker Sinks Islanders
Stopping an Avalanche
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