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NHL playoffs: 3 stories from Lightning-Rangers Game 5

05/25/2015 12:26 EDT | Updated 05/24/2016 05:59 EDT
The Tampa Bay Lightning stormed into Madison Square Garden on Sunday and defeated the New York Rangers 2-0 to win the pivotal fifth game and take a 3-2 lead in the Eastern Conference Finals.

Here are three stories from Game 5:

Ben Bishop's turn to respond

This series has featured a couple bounce-back performances by goaltenders and on Sunday it was Ben Bishop turning things around.

After allowing five goals along the way to losing Game 4, Tampa's netminder responded with his second career playoff shutout in this his first postseason. 

Bishops availability for the game was called into question because of an uncomfortable moment during the warmups. 

However, Bishop's discomfort proved to be temporary as he recovered to turn away all 26 shots he faced. 

While it wasn't the busiest of nights for Bishop, he was able to stand his ground and not give the Rangers much room around his net. 

Stamkos on a roll

Lightning centre Steven Stamkos scored for the fourth time in as many games on a nifty tic-tac-goal scenario late in the second period.

The power-play goal, coupled with Valtteri Filppula marker earlier in the frame were the only goals that this game would see.

Moments earlier, Stamkos had a point-blank chance, but he was robbed by Rangers goalie Henrik Lundqvist.

Stamkos has been on a hot streak lately, recording seven goals and seven assists for a total of 14 points in his last 10 games. This is a huge improvement compared to the three points Stamkos produced in the first eight games of this year's playoffs. 

Odds in Tampa's favour

If we're basing it simply on statistics, then the safe bet is that the Lightning will emerge as the winner of the East finals.

In NHL history, 79 per cent of teams that win the fifth game of a best-of-seven series tied 2-2 end up winning the series. 

The only problem is that it's tough to rule out the Rangers, despite what history might suggest, especially since they rallied from a 3-1 series deficit to defeat the Washington Capitals in the second round. 

Rangers coach Alain Vigneault spoke to reporters after the game about the challenge that his team is now facing:

"Well, I mean, our intentions are to continue to play. If we want to continue to play, we're going to have to, obviously, play our best game of the year.

"That team is playing extremely well. I think our experience in these situations might come in and help. But at the end of the day, we've got to go out and execute and we're going to have to play our best game of the year."

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