Colorado’s Nazem Kadri scores the game-winning goal in overtime
By: Austin Fang
On Wednesday, June 22, the Colorado Avalanche defeated the Tampa Bay Lightning 3 to 2 in a climactic overtime thriller to take a 3-1 series lead in the NHL Stanley Cup Finals.
The game started with Tampa Bay’s Cirelli and Colorado’s MacKinnon scoring the two first goals. After a back-and-forth matchup, the game entered overtime, where Avalanche center Nazem Kadri shot the puck into the goal, with Bolts goalie Andrei Vasilevskiy trying to block it.
For a second, the Colorado bench was silent as the officials tried to locate the puck. When they finally located it on the back of the goalpost, the bench erupted as they began to celebrate their win.
One more victory would win them their trophy in two decades. In this postseason, they have played 18 games and won 15 of them. They swept the Predators and the Oilers in the 1st and 3rd rounds and beat the Blues in 6 games in the conference semifinals.
After the game, Nathan MacKinnon, Colorado’s star center, stated, “Obviously, they’re probably preaching, ‘They’ve never been here; they’re going to be tight,’ and that’s fair, but we’ll be ready to go. We’ve been great under pressure all playoffs, all season.
The Bolts, who are the twice defending champions, had a record of 13-8 after the devastating OT loss. In the first round, they won in a very close game 7 against the Maple Leafs. After sweeping the Panthers in the second round, they found themselves in a sticky situation in the conference finals, down 2-0 against the Rangers. Miraculously, they managed to win 4 games consecutively to secure their spot in the finals.
This loss for the Bolts was a very distressing one. “This one is going to sting much more than others,” said Jon Cooper, the coach of the Tampa Bay Lightning. “You’re going to see what I mean when you see the winning goal. And my heart breaks for the players. Because we probably still should be playing.”