The Carolina Hurricanes limited the Tampa Bay Lighting to just 15 total shots on goal for the entire contest, but the defending champions used those wisely as they pushed ahead 2-0 in the series to survive a late Canes’ rally to defeat the Carolina 2-1 Tuesday evening inside PNC Arena.
The first period saw both teams get to a fast start pushing the case for early goals, but neither team were able to successfully cash in on the scoring chances. After a scoreless first period, Carolina once again found themselves playing catch up as Tampa broke the tie with a goal from Alex Killorn with a pass from Steve Stamkos at the 7:09 mark. The score would remain 1-0 in favor of Tampa heading into the second intermission.
Carolina continued to get limited serious scoring chances early in the third period with most of their shots coming from the blue line. The Bolts then struck on a stretch pass with 8:06 off the clock in the final stanza from Victor Hedman to Anthony Cirelli as he controlled the puck and maneuvered past Brady Skjei while putting the shot behind Alex Nedeljkovic to put Tampa Bay ahead 2-0.
With 2:30 remaining in the contest, Nedeljkovic was pulled for the extra skater. Jordan Staal battled for the puck behind the net and found Andrei Svechnikov in front of the net who scored to trim the Lightning lead to 2-1 with 1:30 left. Carolina kept the pressure on, creating havoc in the crease on two occasions within the final minute, but were denied sending the series to Tampa with the Lighting ahead 2-0 in the series.
Up next: Game 3 – Thursday, June 3 – 8 PM – USA Network