Lightning on verge of sweeping the Canadiens, updates on the Ducks-Flames series and more in your NHL Canadian Corner.
THE TAMPA TRIBUNE/MONTREAL GAZETTE: Tyler Johnson’s buzzer-beating goal (1.1 seconds remaining) gave the Tampa Bay Lightning a 2-1 victory and a commanding 3-0 lead in their best-of-seven series against the Montreal Canadiens. The Lightning can complete the sweep tonight in Game Four.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Yes, the Canadiens were the dominant team in this game, yet their anemic offense once again did them in. One reason is the superb play of Lightning goalie Ben Bishop. The other is the Habs popgun offense has sputtered since March and all but dried up since the midpoint of their opening-round series against Ottawa. If the Habs can’t find a solution to their scoring woes soon, they’ll be returning to Montreal on Friday to clear out their lockers. Only four teams in NHL history have overcome a 3-0 series deficit. The Canadiens have never done it, and I’ve seen nothing in this series to suggest they can beat that trend.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Not to take anything away from the Flames’ well-deserved Game Three overtime victory, but I had the sense in that game the Ducks were taking their opponent for granted. They won’t make that mistake in Game Four. The Flames must be prepared for a hard-hitting tilt tonight.
WINNIPEG FREE PRESS: Jets captain Andrew Ladd will undergo sports hernia surgery on Friday.
EDMONTON SUN: Terry Jones recently reported Edmonton Oilers GM Peter Chiarelli had a meeting with Team Canada coach and former San Jose Sharks bench boss Todd McLellan.
TORONTO STAR: Are the Maple Leafs interested in New York Rangers assistant GM Jeff Gorten?
OTTAWA SUN: New McDonald’s “Hamburglar” character bears a striking resemblance to Ottawa Senators netminder Andrew Hammond.