After overcoming a 3-1 series deficit to the Pittsburgh Penguins, the Tampa Bay Lightning are taking their powerful offense and their clutch goal-tending to the next round.
They will be taking on the No. 1 overall seed, the Washington Capitals. The Capitals' series was the shortest series of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals, as they took out the New York Rangers in five games.
These two South Eastern Conference Rivals are very familiar with each other. They met six times in the regular season, with Washington winning four of the games.
Goal-tending is going to be key in this series because it features two goalies who played red hot in the first round.
In the first round, Washington dominated most of their games. Mostly because of goaltender Michal Neuvirth Neuvirth had a very high .946 save percentage and only allowed 1.38 goals per contest. Washington was led by Alex Ovechkin and Mike Green on offense.
Tampa Bay came back and won the series because of 41-year-old Dwayne Roloson. Roloson was a brick wall in the last three games of the series. His first round totals were a .941 save percentage and a 2.05 goals allowed per contest. Martin St. Louis registered eight points in the first round, and Simon Gagne recorded seven. Tampa did not play well at home in the first two games of their series. They must pick it up at home if they want a shot.
Washington did not generate a lot of offense against the eight seed New York Rangers. So any offense they will bring is going to have a hard time scoring off Dwayne Roloson. Tampa Bay was able to manage the mighty Penguins, and I believe they can knock off the top seed.
Predictions: Tampa Bay in six.