TAMPA, Fla. — Goaltenders Carey Price and Andrei Vasilevskiy put on a clinic early in Game 2 of the Stanley Cup Final on Wednesday night to keep the score 0-0 between the Montreal Canadiens and Tampa Bay Lightning after the first period.
Price finished with six saves and Vasilevskiy 13 to go along with chants of “Va-sy! Va-sy!” from the crowd of over 18,000 at Amalie Arena. Vasilevskiy made an early stop when Montreal’s Nick Suzuki found space in tight and got his right shoulder on a shot by Cole Caufield a little later.
Price was at his best on two successful penalty kills after the Canadiens streak ended at 32 late in Game 1. He also was fortunate when playoff leading goal-scorer Brayden Point missed the net high and wide off a rush just after Vasilevskiy’s save on Suzuki.
Tampa Bay killed off the first half of defenseman Ryan McDonagh’s double minor for high-sticking Philipp Danault with 1:32 remaing on the rest of it at the start of the second.
The first goal matters so much for the Canadiens, who play a different style when leading. They are 11-2 this postseason when scoring first.
Montreal’s penalty kill benefitted from the return of forward Joel Armia, who missed the series opener after a brief stint in NHL COVID protocol.
Tough forward Brendan Gallagher, whose forehead was bloodied on a takedown Monday night, blocked a shot at 5-on-5 for the Canadiens without a stick early in Game 2.
Follow AP Hockey Writer Stephen Whyno on Twitter at https://twitter.com/SWhyno