Rangers vs. Lightning score: Nikita Kucherov, Steven Stamkos carry Tampa to Game 4 win, even series

CBS Sports

06-08-2022

The Lightning took control of the game in the opening minutes courtesy of a Pat Maroon goal and never trailed in a 4-1 win over the New York Rangers in Game 4. Star forwards Nikita Kucherov and Steven Stamkos registered one goal apiece, while winger Ondrej Palat was also a force with a goal and two assists. It marked the third consecutive game in which Kucherov scored a goal and it was also his sixth point during that stretch. Slow starts have plagued the Lightning throughout the series, but that wasn't the case in Game 4. The Eastern Conference Final is now tied 2-2 as the series shifts back to New York for Thursday's pivotal Game 5.

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They weren’t quite facing the abyss in the Eastern Conference final against the New York Rangers, but they were close enough to feel a cool breeze at their backs. The Lightning had 50 giveaways in the first two games, and only 15 the past two games. “And we’re playing a really strong Rangers team who was coming off a couple of big emotional series wins. After giving up almost four power plays a game in the first three games, the Lightning had only two on Tuesday night. Based on the way the past two games have gone, the Lightning could take control of the series if they force New York into a 5-on-5 game.

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With just under seven minutes remaining in the second period, Palat sprung Kucherov on a breakaway with a pass down the center of the ice. With a game-high three points and plus-three plus-minus rating, he might have been an even bigger factor than he was in Game 3. In addition to his assist and shot on goal, he had a hit and two blocked shots in 14:16. Earlier in the game, he made key stops against Kevin Rooney, Alexis Lafrenière and Tyler Motte to keep the Rangers at bay. Grade: AThe case for restRust was blamed for the Lightning’s lackluster performance in a four-goal loss in Game 1.

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