Lightning shock Rangers in Game 5, inch closer to another Stanley Cup appearance

Lightning shock Rangers in Game 5, inch closer to another Stanley Cup appearance

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The Tampa Bay Lightning defeated the New York Rangers 3-1 in Game 5 of the Eastern Conference Final on Thursday night and are one win away from making their third straight Stanley Cup Final.

Mikhail Sergachev played the hero for the Lightning in the game. The Tampa Bay defender scored the equalizer in the second period at the 17:34 mark in the game. In the third period, Sergachev would be credited with a goal through traffic to put the Lightning up 2-1.

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Mikhail Sergachev #98 of the Tampa Bay Lightning celebrates with teammates after scoring the go-ahead goal during the third period against the New York Rangers in Game Five of the Eastern Conference Final of the 2022 Stanley Cup Playoffs at Madison Square Garden on June 09, 2022 in New York City.

Mikhail Sergachev #98 of the Tampa Bay Lightning celebrates with teammates after scoring the go-ahead goal during the third period against the New York Rangers in Game Five of the Eastern Conference Final of the 2022 Stanley Cup Playoffs at Madison Square Garden on June 09, 2022 in New York City. (Al Bello/Getty Images)

Brandon Hagel would later score the empty-net goal to seal the game for Tampa Bay.

Sergachev’s goals were the first two of the playoffs. He has eight playoff goals in his career.

The Rangers got on the board first thanks to an unassisted goal from Ryan Lindgren on an incredible angle, but it was all the scoring New York could muster on goaltender Andrei Vasilevskiy.

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Vasilevskiy finished with 24 saves and may have gotten lucky after Ryan Strome misplayed a puck right in front of the net. It could have been the goal that tied the game up but the puck got away.

The Lightning have won three consecutive games in the series and are close to getting back to the Stanley Cup Final. Tampa Bay could wrap up the series at home on Saturday at 8 p.m. ET.

Mikhail Sergachev #98 of the Tampa Bay Lightning celebrates with teammates after scoring a goal in the second period against the New York Rangers in Game Five of the Eastern Conference Final of the 2022 Stanley Cup Playoffs at Madison Square Garden on June 9, 2022 in New York City.

Mikhail Sergachev #98 of the Tampa Bay Lightning celebrates with teammates after scoring a goal in the second period against the New York Rangers in Game Five of the Eastern Conference Final of the 2022 Stanley Cup Playoffs at Madison Square Garden on June 9, 2022 in New York City. (Jared Silber/NHLI via Getty Images)

Tampa Bay has an 8-2 record when leading 3-2 in a best-of-7 series.

Ryan Lindgren #55 of the New York Rangers celebrates his second period goal with teammates against the Tampa Bay Lightning in Game Five of the Eastern Conference Final of the 2022 Stanley Cup Playoffs at Madison Square Garden on June 9, 2022 in New York City.

Ryan Lindgren #55 of the New York Rangers celebrates his second period goal with teammates against the Tampa Bay Lightning in Game Five of the Eastern Conference Final of the 2022 Stanley Cup Playoffs at Madison Square Garden on June 9, 2022 in New York City. (Jared Silber/NHLI via Getty Images)

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A win for the Lightning means they will face the Colorado Avalanche in the Stanley Cup Final. A win for the Rangers means Game 7 is back in New York City.

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