Despite being down three goals in the third period, the Toronto Maple Leafs made an incredible comeback to complete the win in overtime against the Tampa Bay Lightning, who were close to tying the series if not for careless penalties.
Tampa’s offense was in full force throughout the first two periods while shutting down the Leafs’ offense in what was an entertaining game to begin with. Steven Stamkos scored a goal, while Alex Killorn netted a pair of goals for the Tampa Bay Lightning to go up by three in the second frame.
But Toronto’s resilience kept them in the game as Auston Matthews scored a pair himself to help keep the game close in proximity to a one-goal game.
Then, Morgan Reilly scored the tying goal to send it to overtime when Alex Kerfoot tipped in a shot from Mark Giordano during the Leafs’ forecheck on a powerplay 4 minutes and 14 seconds into extra time.
How did the Toronto Maple Leaf’s matchup with the Tampa Bay Lightning?
This game had all the ingredients of playoff hockey with heavy hitting, goal-scoring, and heart from both teams. Not to mention that the game was a high-scoring affair of which the Toronto Maple Leafs took advantage.
It was indeed the patience of the Toronto Maple Leafs that took Game 4 in style, even though they were down three goals after 40 minutes of action.
Who are the scoring leaders for the Maple Leafs and Lightning?
After four games, Mitch Marner leads both teams in points with eight assists and two goals for 10 points in the series. Meanwhile, Nikita Kucherov leads the Tampa Bay Lightning with one goal and five assists coming out to six points in the series.
This game was the defining mark of the Toronto Maple Leafs with a character game played to their advantage, while the Tampa Bay Lightning have a lot of reflection to do on their part.
Game 5 will determine if the Leafs are a real team to contend in the playoffs, and for Tampa Bay it will be a win-or-go-home scenario, which they are all too familiar with.