The Tampa Bay Lightning can advance to the 2015 Stanely Cup Final on Tuesday night if they defeat the New York Rangers in Game 6 of their best-of-seven Eastern Conference Final. The Tuesday game will be held in Florida, after Tampa Bay defeated New York 2-0 in Game 5 at Madison Square Garden on Sunday night.
The Lightning and Rangers both struggled to find the net in the first half of Sunday's game before Valtteri Filppula and Steven Stamkos pushed them to the 2-0 lead late in the second period. Stamkos also assisted Filppula in the team’s go-ahead goal. Ben Bishop made 26 saves for Tampa Bay to record his second shutout in the 2015 Stanley Cup playoffs.
“The PK [penalty killers] came up huge. We weren’t very happy with the last two games. Don’t know how many it was, four or five [penalties killed] tonight, it really kept us in it. We were able to get one [power play goal]. The power play came up big,” Bishop told rangers.lohudblogs.com in the post-game interview. “We were happy with it. Obviously, there is still room for improvement. We will watch this and try to take another step forward.”
The Rangers controlled the puck early but just couldn’t cash in on their opportunities. Overall, New York had more shots on goal than Tampa Bay, who only had 22, which is tied for the fewest shots on goal New York has allowed in a game in the 2015 postseason.
The Rangers had major opportunities with a man advantage but couldn’t duplicate their Game 4 win when they scored on two of four power plays at Tampa Bay.
“I mean we had some good offensive zone time. We talked about a couple of times where we should have probably thrown a few more pucks towards the net, even if it wasn’t necessarily on the net, [we] had to put it more toward the area,” New York captain Ryan McDonagh said.
“They did a good job blocking shots tonight but you know we have to do a better job especially with those power plays there in the second, of putting more pucks toward the net. It was a big difference in the game -- they get one [power play goal] and we don’t.”