We all know how important it is to get on the scoreboard first in the NHL playoffs…. the Tampa Bay Lightning did that tonight, Alex Killorn provided that all-important score less than 5 minutes into the Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final. (A beautiful backhand deflection), coming into this game Tampa Bay was a perfect 9-0 when scoring first. Checkmark besides great start.
As it turns out, Game 1, was a valuable lesson for this young Tampa Bay Lightning team. You cannot sit back and coast through a Stanley Cup Final game. Literally, the Tampa Bay Lightning were only good for 10 minutes of hockey. Even the most casual of NHL fan knows that creating just three threatening scoring chances over 40 minutes of play will not get the job done. I don’t care how good your goaltender has been. In my opinion, Ben Bishop does not possess the ability to win this series by himself.
The Chicago Blackhawks showed their Stanley Cup experience: Hanging around in the game. All it took, was a two-minute span in the final frame to win Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final. On goals by: Teuvo Teravainen and Antoine Vermette. Two players that have been in it out of the lineup for the Chicago Blackhawks in the 2015 playoffs. This speaks to the depth of the organization when it comes to their ability to get quick strike offense.
Tampa Bay must get back to the drawing board and find a way to play with a consistent tempo for 60 minutes. This team found out the hard way you cannot take a shift off in the Stanley Cup Final. I would not recommend playing run and gun either. At this stage, you have to strike the perfect balance between offense and defense.