Who played well in Game 5 of the Stanley Cup Final? Sometimes it’s easy to tell, sometimes it isn’t. NHL.com graded the players in the 3-2 double-overtime victory by the Dallas Stars against the Tampa Bay Lightning at Rogers Place in Edmonton on Saturday. The Lightning lead the best-of-7 series 3-2. Here are the players and trends that stood out the most:
Corey Perry (Stars) — Perry started the scoring and finished it to send the Stars to Game 6 on Monday (8 p.m. ET; NBC, CBC, SN, TVAS). The forward has three goals in the past two games, all three from the same spot: right in front of the Lightning net. On the game-winner 9:23 into the second overtime, Perry was screening Lightning goalie Andrei Vasilevskiy when Stars defenseman John Klingberg’s shot was deflected in front. Perry turned and slid the puck into the right side of the net. On his earlier goal, Perry got the loose puck after it bounced off Stars forward Tyler Seguin’s stick and shot under the bar for a 1-0 lead at 17:52 of the first period.
Joe Pavelski (Stars) — With Dallas trailing 2-1, Pavelski scored off the rebound of Stars defenseman Miro Heiskanen’s shot to tie the game 2-2 with 6:45 remaining in the third period. Pavelski has 13 goals this postseason and 61 in his NHL career, the most of any United-States born player. He entered Game 5 tied with Joe Mullen.
Brayden Point (Lightning) — It was another productive game for Point, who had two assists, five shots and four hits in 28:43. The forward has scored 32 points (13 goals, 19 assists) in 22 postseason games, second to teammate Nikita Kucherov, who has scored 33 points (seven goals, 26 assists) in 24 games.
Anton Khudobin (Stars) — He had two rough games in a row but came up big Game 5, making 39 saves and helping Dallas live to see another day.
Ondrej Palat (Lightning) — The Stars still had a good amount of momentum to start the second period until Palat put on a one-man show. The forward took a pass from Kucherov, skated past Dallas defenseman Esa Lindell and crossed in front of Khudobin to tie the game 1-1 at 4:37. Palat has scored 11 goals this postseason, third behind Point and Pavelski. Palat has scored five points (three goals, two assists) in his past four games.
First-period action (up) — Game 5 got off to an energetic start that included big hits, good scoring opportunities, good goaltending and few whistles, but only one goal.
Victor Hedman (Lightning) — He didn’t have a point in Game 5, but we have to acknowledge an incredible shift late in the second period when he played 3:03 when he couldn’t get off the ice. The defenseman had five shots on goal and blocked four shots in a Lightning-high 36:28.
Tyler Seguin (up) — The Stars center hasn’t scored in 14 games but has been coming up with big assists. He had three in Game 5 and has five in the past two games. Seguin has scored 13 points (two goals, 11 assists) in 25 postseason games.
Mikhail Sergachev (up) — The defenseman scored 3:38 into the third period to give Tampa Bay a 2-1 lead. Though he hadn’t scored since Game 3 against the New York Islanders in the Eastern Conference Final on Sept. 11, he has three points (one goal, two assists) in the past two games.
Stars’ health (down) — Defenseman Andrej Sekera left after blocking a shot on the inside of his right knee 10:04 into the first period but returned for the third period and overtime. Forward Roope Hintz didn’t play after he fell shoulder-first into the boards when Lightning forward Tyler Johnson’s stick got caught under his skate in Game 4.
What we learned
Lightning with rare overtime fail
The Lightning were 6-1 in Stanley Cup Playoff overtime games, including 3-0 in series-clinching OT games entering Game 5, so the odds were with them to pull out another one. But the Stars, who lost their first OT game of the postseason on Friday, returned the favor.
Stars: ‘We are not going home!’
That’s what Khudobin said after Dallas eliminated the Vegas Golden Knights 3-2 in overtime in the Western Conference Final on Sept. 14, and it was probably repeated in the locker room after Game 5. The Stars’ strong third period and Pavelski’s goal caused overtime, and Perry’s game-winner gives them momentum for Game 6.