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“Instead of sticking with a lineup that had been playing fairly well despite back to back losses to the Canadiens and Devils, they [the Lightning coaching staff] elected to make big changes to the defensive assignments and the team immediately had its worst defensive performance of the season.”
Injury fallout: Karlsson told ESPN.com that he suffered the hairline fractures in his heel while blocking a shot against the Philadelphia Flyers on March 28. The injury forced him to miss three of the last five games of the season, and he needed injections in his foot in order to play in the playoffs. He also said it should be back to normal by the start of the second round. … Senators D Mark Borowiecki missed the last four games of the Bruins series with a lower-body injury and is questionable for Game 1. … Senators W Tom Pyatt suffered an upper-body injury in the first round and missed the last two games. … Other than the normal postseason bumps and bruises, the Rangers are relatively healthy.
“The Rangers aren’t going to be pushed around, especially by a bubble team that has been plagued with inconsistent play. The Lightning have to play with a sense of urgency that seems to have eluded them lately.”