Lightning players Matt Carle, Steven Stamkos and Alex Killorn celebrate Killorn's goal as Canadiens forward David Desharnais reacts in Game 3 of Tampa Bay's second-round series against Montreal Wednesday. (Mike Carlson/Getty Images)
After a slow first-round points-wise, Lightning star center Steven Stamkos has heated up on the scoresheet in Tampa's second-round series against Montreal. Stamkos continued producing offense Wednesday with a gorgeous setup pass on Alex Killorn's Game 3 goal.
After going without a goal in the first round against Detroit, Lightning superstar Steven Stamkos has made a much bigger impact on offense in Tampa Bay's second-round series against Montreal, breaking out in Game 2 Sunday with a one-goal, three-point night in a 6-2 Bolts win. And Stamkos continued producing early in Game 3 Wednesday, setting up teammate Alex Killorn beautifully for the first goal of the night.
The Lightning won both games in Montreal and were playing before a lively crowd in Tampa Bay Wednesday when Killorn secured the puck in the Canadiens' zone and sent the puck off the boards and back to Stamkos. The Bolts' captain, who finished the opening round with three assists in seven games, calmly sent it right back to Kilorn with a slick backhanded pass – and Killorn proceeded to beat Habs goalie Carey Price at the 12:00 mark of the first period for his third goal of this post-season:
Stamkos' assist was his sixth of the playoffs and seventh point in 10 games. The Canadiens may be trailing 3-0 in the series by the end of Game 3, and that would leave the 25-year-old Stamkos one win away from his first appearance in the Eastern Conference Final since 2011. And, in news that ought to frighten all remaining NHL playoff teams, he's looking more like himself with every game.