The Habs and Lightning played a little tentative to begin the game, with a few miscues by the Canadiens in their own zone. The Canadiens stick-checking was akin to wildly flailing their sticks along the ice which led to a Tampa breakthrough to the front of the net where Carey Price was forced to make 3 saves in a row to prevent the Lightning from jumping to an early lead. P.K. Subban almost scored within the first 5 minutes pinging a shot off the post. The speed of both teams was a major factor to begin the game.
Tomas Plekanec took a tripping penalty after his stick made contact with Ben Bishop's skate blade. The Habs killed off the penalty, and with the precedent established on what is considered goaltender interference, both goalies should have a contact-free game unless someone wants to penalized. As CBC showed us a graphic of 8:00 minutes and counting since the Habs' last shot, the Canadiens were actually doing a great job at preventing the Lightning from getting any shot attempts on net, keeping them from directing any shots towards their net from the 5:04 mark of the 1st period until the 11:46 mark. But then, the Lightning capitalized on the Habs' inability to adapt out of their rigid structure and kept the Habs' hemmed in their own zone, ending with an Alex Killorn shot all alone in the slot on a pass from Steven Stamkos to beat Carey Price for the 1-0 lead.
The Canadiens took another penalty, with Alexei Emelin getting called for interference during a defensive-zone faceoff. The Habs killed it off, but gave plenty of zone-time to the Lightning. The Habs tried to get some offense established, but could not create any opportunities in the middle of the ice. After Brendan Gallagher was cross-checked in the face and did not draw a penalty, the refs awarded the Habs a powerplay on the following shift sending off Valtteri Filpula for holding. The one-note powerplay could not generate any legitimate chances, and will flow into the 2nd period, giving the Habs 54 seconds on the fresh ice to get their first powerplay goal since the 2nd period in Game 2 against the Ottawa Senators, their only powerplay goal of the playoffs.
|12:00||TBL||Alex Killorn (3) Wrist shot - ASST: Steven Stamkos (6)||1 - 0 TBL|
|07:24||MTL||Tomas Plekanec Tripping - 2 min against Ben Bishop|
|15:50||MTL||Alexei Emelin Interference - 2 min against Nikita Kucherov|
|18:56||TBL||Valtteri Filppula Holding - 2 min against David Desharnais|