Ramblings: Habs Take Game 4; Buffalo Analytics; Lafrenière; Eriksson Ek – July 6

Michael Clifford

2021-07-06

We had our first real barn-burner of the Stanley Cup Final as the Tampa Bay Lightning and Montreal Canadiens traded goals to get us a 2-2 game and our first overtime. Josh Anderson started the scoring, finishing a beautiful feed from Nick Suzuki, while Pat Maroon tied the game with just over six minutes left in the third period on a beautiful feed from Mathieu Joseph.

It was a game of real dominating flow as the Bolts really dominated the first period as the Habs took over in the second. Tampa Bay got the better of the play overall, as Andrei Vasilevskiy had to make just 17 saves through 60 minutes.

A fantastic second effort from Anderson on a rush with Cole Caufield gave Montreal the 3-2 win and another breath of life in the series. It wasn't Montreal's best game yet, but it is honestly the blueprint for how they need to beat Tampa Bay. Limiting chances would go a long way as well, but forcing turnovers and relying on Price is what they need to keep doing.

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Tragic news from the NHL came across early Monday morning as Columbus Blue Jackets goaltender Matiss Kivlenieks died in a very unfortunate accident on July 4th. The initial report was that he slipped and hit his head on concrete while escaping a hot tub during a fireworks malfunction, but an autopsy revealed the fireworks to be the direct culprit. The cause of death was chest trauma inflicted by a fireworks blast.

There really isn't much to expand upon here. It was a terrible accident and because of that, a 24-year-old with his whole life ahead of him is now gone. Just an awful reminder of how fragile life is. Much love to the Kivlenieks family, his friends, and the extended Columbus Blue Jackets organization and fans. Things like this just shouldn't happen so when they do, it's just an unbelievable shock. Nothing much more to say.  

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An interesting name from recent Montreal Canadiens history is now an unrestricted free agent in Charles Hudon.

Hudon was a player I thought could bring some fantasy relevance every year. He generally has high shot rates – basically the same shot attempt rate as John Tavares from 2017-20 – and put up 242 hits in 125 regular season NHL games despite playing just 13 minutes a night. I thought there was a genuine chance