The Lightning are headed to the Stanley Cup Semifinals thanks a 2-0 win over the Hurricanes on Tuesday night in Game 5.
Brayden Point and Ross Colton provided the offense, while Andrei Vasilevskiy recorded his second shutout of the postseason, stopping all 29 shots Carolina sent his way.
After a scoreless opening 20 minutes, the game turned when Jani Hakanpaa took an unnecessary interference penalty on Pat Maroon just over three minutes into the second.
Carolina began the kill with a great shorthanded chance on an odd man rush after the Lightning turned the puck over at center ice. Jordan Staal sent a cross-ice feed to Vincent Trocheck, but his shot was stopped by Andrei Vasilevskiy who drove to the left to make a sprawling save that kept the game scoreless.
Less than a minute later, the Bolts made the Hurricanes pay for taking the bad penalty, grabbing the lead with a power play goal. After a bit of a broken entry at the blue line, the puck came free for Alex Killorn on the left wing, giving Tampa Bay an abbreviated 2-on-1 down low. Killorn managed to feed Brayden Point on the left, and he lifted a backhander over Alex Nedeljkovic to put the Lightning in front.
The Bolts then got a big insurance goal midway through the third from Ross Colton. Off a Carolina turnover in the neutral zone, Colton grabbed a loose puck and skated down the right wing to the faceoff circle where he snapped a wrist shot past Nedeljkovic to double the lead.
The Lightning convincingly won the special teams battle. Tampa Bay scored the game-winner on the power play and held the Hurricanes scoreless on their three chances with the man advantage.
Tampa Bay will now wait for the conclusion of the Islanders-Bruins series to find out their next opponent. New York currently leads that series 3-2 with home ice in Wednesday's Game 6.
TBL | 4:06 Brayden Point (8) - Alex Killorn, Nikita Kucherov - PPG
TBL | 9:04 Ross Colton (3) - Unassisted