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Ondrej Palat a possibility for Game Three, goalie controversy debunked

by Missy Zielinski / Tampa Bay Lightning

Ondrej Palat participated in Sunday’s morning skate, but he is still considered a game-time decision for Game Three tonight in Montreal.

“Yesterday I had a good practice and today I had a good morning skate,” Palat said. “I feel good, we’ll see if I’m good to go and in the lineup.”

The call will come down to the Lightning medical staff, as head coach Jon Cooper said “there’ll be 20 guys come 7 p.m. who’ll be ready to play, I hope he’s going to be one of them.”

Unable to play in the Bolts’ last game, Palat shared his observations from the press box on what went wrong in Game Two.

“The first 10 minutes were pretty good,” Palat said. “After they scored we backed off. I think we need to support each other a little more and play with more energy than we did.”

Palat’s presence can also help reinvigorate whichever line he plays with, as he expressed the importance of everyone contributing and something that has not been a problem for the Montreal Canadiens, who have continued to produce secondary scoring.

Sunday morning he was paired with Nate Thompson and Richard Panik, but Cooper has been rather secretive with his combinations, meaning changes could come by puck drop.


Anders Lindback is expected to start Sunday, further embracing that there is no goaltending controversy between he and Kristers Gudlevskis.

The rumors on if Gudlevskis may start Game 3 began when Cooper pulled Lindback with under 10 minutes remaining in Game 2. Many wondered if it was a tactic used to get Kristers Gudlevskis warmed up for a potential start today.

However in Tampa and again in Montreal Sunday morning the Bolts head coach reminded the media that “there is no goaltending controversy.”

“It’s never crossed my mind,” he said.

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The Canadiens hold an all-time series record of 49-5 when leading a best-of-seven series 2-0. They have, however, lost three of their last four series when taking a 2-0 lead, most recently in the 2011 Eastern Conference Quarterfinals to the Boston Bruins (lost series 4-3).

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