Andrei Vasilevskiy, TB at WAS ($7,100) – Well, that was pretty impressive. Vasilevskiy stopped 36 of 38 shots to keep the Lightning in the series after allowing 10 goals over the first two losses. It follows his pattern of performing much better on the road than at home, but also showcases how he can bounce back after a bad start. While the Caps dominated the first two games, the Lightning have bounced back, just like they did against the Bruins after dropping the opener.
Evgeny Kuznetsov, WAS vs. TB ($11,500) – His seven-game point streak now totals four goals and seven assists, while combining with Alex Ovechkin for 21 shots on net in Game 2 – accounting for over half of the Caps’ total. The only concern with Kuznetsov right now is that he’s losing a lot of faceoffs. And even if these are negligible to the outcome of the game, the Caps have scored a few goals off a faceoff win in the offensive zone this series.
Brayden Point, TB at WAS ($10,100) – Thanks to his second consecutive two-point night, Point has notched five goals in his past seven games after starting the playoffs on a cold streak. Point is at his peak right now and the addition of Yanni Gourde gives them a little more offense. And with a win in Game 3, it’s unlikely Jon Cooper will make any line changes.
Lars Eller, WAS vs. TB ($7,800) – Eller has five points in three games this series and, all of a sudden, his contract looks like a bargain. He’s playing big minutes and fulfilling his potential as a power forward after being drafted in the first round, having registered his 50th point of the season (combined season and playoffs) with an assist in Game 3. Eller has played more than 20 minutes in two of the three games, and if Evgeny Kuznetsov continues to struggle in the dot, the Caps may be forced to put the Dane on the ice more often.
Yanni Gourde, TB at WAS ($6,000) – He received a promotion to the second line after the Lightning fell behind 2-0 in the series, and he’ll probably stay there thanks to a Game 3 victory. He didn’t register a shot on net but played more than 16 minutes, his highest total in the series. He brings more offense than Ondrej Palat, so the offensive ceiling for that second line is definitely higher.
Mikhail Sergachev, TB at WAS ($4,600) – Sergachev didn’t get to play a whole lot in Game 3 but was certainly dangerous when the puck was on his stick. Even though he didn’t register a shot on net, he still skated 2:57 on the power play, second only to Victor Hedman. The Lightning went on the power play five times in Game 3, so the Caps have to stay disciplined if tempers flare.