Andrei Vasilevskiy plays his best game of the playoffs to take the series back to Tampa Bay.
The Maple Leafs can't convert on their chances, and struggled, albeit a lot less, at what we used to call driving play. Auston Matthews tried his best, but he couldn't do it twice in a row.
This is how it got to 4-2 for the Lightning:
The Leafs spend a lot of time in their own zone to start, and then they, improbably, get the first goal.
And the crowd really does go wild:
But as it happens, the Lightning get behind the defence, and Sammy can't save this one. It's always tough when the other goal is scored before the first one's been announced.
McCabe is playing the man not the puck, and if they go for the advanced version where someone is there to get the puck, this might be more than a deterrent to easy Tampa entries, it might become a transition the other way.
Brilliant play by the (tremendously) underused William Nylander on PP2. But no joy.
Justin Holl takes a penalty on a hard hit into the boards on Nikita Kucherov post trip (the penalty call).
Sammy comes up big. So does Mitch Marner with a block.
The period ends with a fun power play and an effective PK.
The Leafs work so hard in the early going Tampa actually ices the puck. After 10 minutes of grind to start this game (again) it's nice to have the skate on the other foot.
Dammit. Lots of good Leafs offensive action, and then Sammy lets one in on a rush play when you'd prefer he have that one.
Tampa takes the lead. And so far, Vasilevskiy is having his best game in a long time.
Tampa gets a timely power play in the second half of the period. Toronto gets a necessary and efficient PK where three guys controlled the puck vs the four Lighting players for almost a full minute. Of course, one was Marner.
Marner gets hauled down and the theme song of this playoffs is taken up by the crowd as the Lightning seem to suddenly find another gear on what should be the PK for them, but isn't.
Matthew Knies has left the ice after an earlier block off the back of his leg.
(Shot was actually by Raddysh.)
Tampa takes a penalty right at the whistle, so naturally they start up a scrum to see if they can even it up. No that's not trying to manipulate the refs, it's what teams have been doing for decades.
Maroon hit on Mark Giordano, the call is roughing, and Sheldon Keefe has a long chat with the ref perhaps looking for a major.
Refs are afraid to call boarding boarding again, it seems.
Oh, but wait, it gets worse:
UPDATE: now that there's a gamesheet for this game, the call was 2 min for roughing on Giordano. I don't know where the idea came from that the hit was entirely uncalled – a Twitter rumour, likely.
There's a technical issue with game data, so I can't ever verify what the story is here, but I think Omar is not right on this one. The broadcast initially said there was a penalty on the hit, at first. Joe thinks so:
I think that hit is a boarding major, but no one asks me about that stuff. The Leafs will start the third on the power play.
Matt Knies is out for the third, but not Mark Giordano.
Giordano showed up two minutes later after not the best power play the Leafs have ever produced.
Mitch Marner can't convert on a breakaway. Vasilevskiy has this game pretty much locked down.
Sammy with a hot stop after some desperately close to scoring plays from the Leafs.
The Leafs get chances, and Vasilevskiy has them all cold, and then Nick Paul gets another:
He's trying to do it again!
Leafs continue to play with the net empty, but it's the right move. The Lightning end up missing it twice, but even with that spin of the wheel of fate going for them, this is not their day. Eventually Alex Killorn filled the empty net.
Game 6 is Saturday night in Tampa, see you then.