Stanley Cup playoffs: Lightning get first win vs. Capitals

Friday's Sports in Brief

Quick Strikes: The Tampa Bay Lightning are back

The bad news for the Capitals, counterintuitive as it may be: They host Game 4.

Washington Capitals Center Nicklas Backstrom (19) in warm ups prior to the regular season National Hockey League game between the Washington Capitals and Toronto Maple Leafs on April 4, 2017 at Air Canada Centre in Toronto, ON. The return is a significant boost for Washington, which went up 2-0 in the series before dropping Game 3 and for the first time looking like his absence was having an effect.

In Game 3 against Washington, they led the way again.

Tampa Bay Lightning center Brayden Point celebrates his goal during the second period of Game 3 of the NHL Eastern Conference final against the Washington Capitals on Tuesday, May 15, 2018.

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"You miss him in every way, shape or form", Capitals coach Barry Trotz said in a Washington Post story by Isabelle Khurshudyan on Wednesday.

The 30-year-old Swedish centre took part in the Capitals' morning skate today, participating in line rushes and power play drills. He is in the conference final, but he's captained Canada's world junior team, he's been on some pretty big environments, so he's been on this stage before. "He wants to [be] back". If sports has taught us anything, it's that a 3-1 lead is a less-than-desirable position to be in.

Backstrom was injured when he blocked a shot by defenseman Justin Schultz in Game 5 of the second round against the Pittsburgh Penguins. Stamkos has 33 goals and 68 assists to his credit (and has logged at least one point in 62 games).

Stamkos said he felt like the team had a bit of a chip on its shoulder after last season's disappointing finish and believed the team had put itself in position for playoff success this year. "It's always nice to have Nick in the lineup". Pointer getting that fourth one kind of popped the balloon.

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Then there was Tampa Bay goalie Andrei Vasilevskiy. "He's a fabulous player". As one could easily imagine, Wilson hit the ground like a ton of bricks and was down on the ice for quite a while as he attempted to get the license plate of the truck that just rammed into him. This postseason has also been incredibly light on the overtimes, and we've got to be due for one eventually.

Backstrom, even if he's not 100 percent, gives Washington another threat on the power play, which has so far been a deciding factor in the series.

After two no-shows in the first two games on home ice, the Lightning found their groove and got it together like they needed to in order to make this a series.

Griezmann at the double as Atletico cruise to final glory
Right-back Bouna Sarr has an issue with his shoulder but could be fit, with Hiroki Sakai likely to take his place if not. Fat point in the game put the Gabi, which kick in the 89th minute brought the score to devastating - 3:0.

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