8:40 PM: Asked by Emily Kaplan on ESPN to explain the decision to sit Kakko, Gerard Gallant said “no.”
8:02 PM: Ryan Strome and Dryden Hunt are in, Kakko is OUT.
7:50 PM: Ryan Strome returned to warmups. (MSG)
7:44 PM: The lines being used in line rushes are (MSG):
- Alexis Lafreniere, Mika Zibanejad, Frank Vatrano
- Artemi Panarin, Andrew Copp, Kaapo Kakko
- Chris Kreider, Filip Chytil, Barclay Goodrow
- Tyler Motte, Kevin Rooney, Dryden Hunt
Ryan Strome reportedly came out to start warmups and then left soon after. (MSG)
7:39 PM: Brayden Point is not skating for Tampa. Dryden Hunt is skating in warmups.
3:17 PM: When asked about the lineup and possible changes tonight, Gerard Gallant said (NYR):
- Are you still considering changing the look of the team, “I said yesterday that we could consider. So we’ll see what’s going to happen tonight.”
- How do you balance making changes and being consistent or going for a spark, “You just said it, that is the fine line. Obviously, like I said, we said we talked about maybe a few lineup changes and see where it goes from there. Again, we’ve done that al season long, so it’s not a big deal.”
- You don’t worry about how the players might react to a change in lines, “not at all, there is no issue. No issue, none at all.”
- Is there something you can tell early that a lot of offense might be created, “certain games, yes, but in this series, no. I go back to the other game, last game and there were very few scoring chances for either team compared to other nights where there are 18-19-20. Last game was 13-12, for me. There is not a whole lot of opportunity. We played a more patient game the other night, still found a way to lose late with that tough goal at the end of the game. Overall it was a coin flip to me and I hope we go in there today and play a good, solid, all around game. Sometimes you have to win a different way than you’ve done all season long and this season has proven that.”
- Is there anything knew you’ve learned about the team in the playoffs, “We’re not going to quit, we’re going to work hard and compete and battle. Like I said, the series started out great for us and now we’ve lost three in a row and we have to battle back. We’ve been in this position five times, is that right, and so I’m hoping we get the same result tonight. It’s going to be a battle and we’ll have to compete hard and hoping for the same result tonight.”
Brayden Point is questionable for tonight.