The Central Division is one of the more entertaining divisions this year. Besides the East Division. the Central could be the most stacked division in the league. The top three are pretty much secured with Carolina, Tampa Bay, and Florida. The seeding between the three teams is still very much up for grabs. Tonight, two of these teams squared off in a heavyweight battle. Tampa Bay and Carolina have given us some incredible games this season. Tonight was no different. Yanni Gourde has been a pesky player for Tampa for a while. He showed that tonight.
The Lightning jumped out to a 2-0 lead early on in the second period. These goals were scored by Alex Killorn (12) and Brayden Point (19). The Hurricanes wouldn’t go down easy though. Andrei Svechnikov is already a superstar in this league and Carolina is lucky to have him. He got his team back in this game at 2-1 in the second period. It was an unlikely hero in Brady Skjei who tied the game early in the third period. The game needed to be settled in overtime. That is when Yanni Gourde delivered the crushing blow to the Canes.
That's a GWG in overtime for Yanni Gourde! ⚡
— NHL (@NHL) April 20, 2021
Alex Killorn’s Intense Night
The man from Harvard had himself quite a night. On a night where Gordie Howe is getting a record broken of his, another accolade in his honor resurfaced. The Gordie Howe Hattrick is when a player has a goal, fight, and assist in the same game. You do not usually see them in the game today as fighting is less common than before. Alex Killorn brought that back big time in this game.
On a questionable hit to some people (I have no problem with it), Killorn had to respond to a surge of Hurricane players after him. Jake Gardiner was the lucky contestant to square off against Killorn. That is the fight of the equation. The goal was the first goal of the game by the Lightning. His assist came in the game-winning goal by Yanni Gourde.
Never seen Alex Killorn this fired up, but we like it!
— Bally Sports Sun: Lightning (@BallyLightning) April 20, 2021
Playoff Race Heating Up
The goal by Yanni Gourde may have saved the Lightning hopes of first place for the playoffs. Carolina has been rolling through their games in their recent stretch. The Florida Panthers have been hot too. The team that wins the majority of these head-to-head games against each other will get the crown. This win for Tampa Bay is huge and the final stretch could be very interesting to watch. We will see how it plays out. Who do you think will take first place in the Central Division?
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