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Capitals center Nicklas Backstrom sits out Game 3 with injured hand

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Cary Erickson | 16 May, 2018, 09:18

The Tampa Bay Lightning said after Game 2 that the Washington Capitals had robbed them of their identity, after two uncharacteristic defeats on home ice to open the Eastern Conference Final. He's up to six goals and nine assists in 13 games this postseason.

The Capitals' power play and penalty kill both have thrived during the Stanley Cup Playoffs.

Tuesday night, DC councilman Jack Evans announced that Game Four is covered as well. But Tuesday was a different story. The starting time for each Capitals home game was pushed back an hour to 8 PM, increasing the likelihood that the final horn would blow after Metro closed its doors at 11:30 PM. With his 10th career power-play goal, Stamkos tied Martin St. Louis for Tampa Bay's playoff record. Stamkos opened the scoring at the 13:53 mark of the first period when he blew a one-timer on the power play past Caps goalie Braden Holtby.

And Vasilevskiy looked much less worn out than he did in the first two games, where he allowed 10 goals in five periods of play and never eclipsed a.850 save percentage. The Bolts suffered a gut punch in Game 1, and came back to win. And as for Thurday's Game 4... the hero was not who you would expect.

Per Scott Allen of the Washington Post, Wilson is traveling from her home in Rochester, New York to Washington D.C. for the game after receiving permission to travel from her doctors.

Washington's defensive play has limited the Lightning to one even-strength goal in the first two games, and the Capitals have succeeded in generating odd-man rushes when they have the puck. Washington outscored Tampa Bay a combined 7-1 during 5-on-5 in Games 1 and 2.

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"If there is one thing I can sit here and say about these two games, it's we just played tentative and a little bit slow", Lightning coach Jon Cooper told

"Today was one of those games you feed pucks to Kuch and Stammer, pucks are going to go in", said Hedman. "A great player for us all year, but you got two world-class centermen in front of him".

It wasn't flawless, but it was a more complete effort from Tampa Bay, which jumped out to a 3-0 lead before Brett Connolly answered for Washington in the second. Eller took his third of the night when he cross-checked Steven Stamkos, but Stamkos was sent off at the same time for roughing Eller in a tussle after the play.

4 on 3 for the Bolts.

"We know both teams have pretty good special teams, and if we're going to play like that, they're going to use it", said Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin, who combined with Kuznetsov to put 21 shots on net.