As illustrated in this latest report, Holtby won't dwell too much on his shortcomings from Game 3, when he coughed up four goals on 23 shots to snap a three-game win streak dating back to the second-round playoff series against Pittsburgh.
The Capitals will look to bounce back from Tuesday's 4-2 loss and win their third game of the series Thursday night. The bad news for the Capitals, counterintuitive as it may be: They host Game 4.
He missed Washington's past four games with a right hand injury.
They possessed the puck, making the Capitals chase the game rather than chasing it themselves, thanks to some tactical adjustments and line scrambling. But when the Lightning stubbed their toe and dropped the first two games at home against the Capitals, for the first time in the playoffs fingers started to point towards Tampa Bay's captain, who was still searching for his first even-strength point of the series.
The Lightning' offense attempted 32.4 shots per game in the regular season, resulting in 3.6 goals per contest (ranked first overall in the NHL).
And as they have in other critical junctures of this postseason, the Lightning relied on their best players to rise to the occasion and rescue a series that had been firmly in their opponents' grasp.
Stamkos said he felt like the team had a bit of a chip on its shoulder after last season's disappointing finish and believed the team had put itself in position for playoff success this year.
The Capitals have converted on 24.0 percent of their power play chances this season, a figure that's good enough for seventh-best in the league. And sure, they have had a few rough patches during their run, but getting 42 per cent of the scoring chances - where they are through three games - is rare. "When Nicky's ready to go, he's ready to go", Trotz said. Seeing either of them play sub-par Thursday would be a surprise. I didn't think we were as focused as we have been normally on the road.
Did the Lightning feel they owed their goalie one, after hanging him out to dry for 10 goals in the first two games?
Lars Eller has done a good job filling in at centre on the second line, but Backstrom is one of the most underrated players in the National Hockey League. Eventually a home team has to win a game... right?
"We had to check tonight, and it helped it go in our favor".
This was how it should be for Tampa Bay. "He's our leader. We all love him".