Who played well in Game 4 of the Stanley Cup Final? Sometimes it’s easy to tell, sometimes it isn’t. NHL.com graded the players in the 3-2 overtime victory by the Montreal Canadiens against the Tampa Bay Lightning at Bell Centre in Montreal on Monday. The Lightning lead the best-of-7 series 3-1. Here are the players and trends that stood out the most.
Josh Anderson (Canadiens) — The forward scored his two biggest goals of the Stanley Cup Playoffs. His goal 3:57 into overtime forced a Game 5 on Wednesday. He also scored for a 1-0 lead 15:39 into the first period on the Canadiens’ second shot on goal. The two goals are Anderson’s first points of the Cup Final.
Carey Price (Canadiens) — The goalie has had his tough moments in this series but was excellent in Game 4. He was at his best in the first period, when he saved all 12 shots, and in overtime, when he made four saves when the Lightning had a power play for 2:59 that carried over from the third period. Price finished with 32 saves.
Ryan McDonagh (Lightning) — The defenseman worked hard to set up the tying goal at 17:20 of the second period. He kept Canadiens defenseman Jeff Petry‘s clearing attempt in the zone, skated to the net and threw a backhand pass to forward Barclay Goodrow, who scored to make it 1-1. McDonagh has seven points, all assists, in 22 playoff games.
Alexander Romanov (Canadiens) — He was playing in his third playoff game, and the goal he scored 8:48 into the third period to give Montreal a 2-1 lead was his second shot of the playoffs.
Blake Coleman (Lightning) — The forward had an assist on Goodrow’s goal, led the team with five shots on goal and had five hits. Coleman has scored three points (two goals, one assist) in his past three games.
Presence of Canadiens legends (up) — Prior to Game 4, the cameras focused on three Canadiens greats, all of whom won the Stanley Cup multiple times with them and are in the Hockey Hall of Fame: forward Yvan Cournoyer, who won the Cup 10 times; forward Guy Lafleur, who won it five times and goalie Patrick Roy, who won it twice with Montreal and twice with the Colorado Avalanche.
Brayden Point (down) — The Lightning forward was productive through the first three rounds of the playoffs but has been rather quiet in the Final. He’s scored three points, all assists, all in Game 1. In Game 4, he was held without a point for the third consecutive game and took two penalties. Point took a big hit along the boards from Canadiens defenseman Shea Weber 7:58 into the second period, and was hit by teammate Victor Hedman‘s slapshot on a power play at 16:03 of the second.
Montreal’s start (up) — This was looking like a ‘down’ for most of the first period. The Lightning had eight shots on goal before the Canadiens got their first, from forward Tyler Toffoli at 8:07. They also made mistakes. Rookie forward Cole Caufield‘s turnover turned into two good scoring chances for Coleman, beginning at 1:16. But it was the Canadiens who went to the break with a 1-0 lead courtesy of Anderson despite being outshot 12-5.
Great (almost) farewell from NBC (up) — The NHL’s time on NBC isn’t over yet, but during the first intermission Doc Emrick narrated a video documenting the network’s 16 years of coverage, which began in the 2005-06 season and will end with this Final. From regular-season games to Winter Classics to Stadium Series to Stanley Cup Playoffs, it’s been quite a ride.
Pat Maroon (up) — The Lightning forward is trying to win the Stanley Cup for the third consecutive year after winning with the St. Louis Blues in 2019 and the Lightning last year, so is it any surprise that he played a part in Game 4? His goal, off a great pass from forward Mathieu Joseph, tied it 2-2 with 6:12 remaining in the third.
What we learned
Penalty kill saves Canadiens
It wasn’t looking good when Weber was called for a four-minute high-sticking penalty with 1:01 remaining in the third period and the game tied 2-2, but Montreal held on in the third and killed the remaining 2:59 at the beginning of overtime. Anderson’s winner came 58 seconds after Weber came out of the box.
Lightning can’t find one more
You figured they would get the Cup-clinching goal when they got that four-minute power play late in the third. But the Lightning, who were 22-for-60 (36.7 percent) on the power play in the playoffs entering Game 4, went 0-for-5. Some of that credit certainly goes to the Canadiens, who have had a strong penalty kill throughout the playoffs (53-of-58, 91.4 percent). It also wasn’t for lack of trying for the Lightning, who had nine shots on their power plays.