Every week, we'll provide a handy recap and accompaniment to the latest episode of "Quest For The Stanley Cup," the NHL docuseries about the playoffs, available exclusively in the U.S. on ESPN+. The third episode for the 2020 playoffs is titled "Stick to the Plan."
Describe this episode in 10 words or less
Sticking to the plan is difficult when doing illegal things.
Best on-ice scene
In Game 3 between the Tampa Bay Lightning and the New York Islanders, goalie Andrei Vasilevskiy's pad came loose during play, but the on-ice officials -- per the NHL rulebook -- let things continue until the Lightning controlled the puck or there was a stoppage. In this case, the Islanders scored. This leads to the most interesting eavesdrop of the episode, as Lightning defenseman Zach Bogosian debates the referee, Gord Dwyer:
Dwyer: "Here's the deal: If his skate blade comes off, we don't blow it."
Bogosian: "His pad was off!"
Dwyer: "One strap was undone, I understand that. He could get injured if he's missing a skate blade too. They had the puck. I'm not blowing it until you guys get the puck."
Bogosian: "You expect him to make that save with no pad?"
Dwyer: "I expect him to make the save if he loses his skate blade as well."
Luke Schenn of the Lightning and Matt Martin of the Islanders had a spirited fight in Game 2. In the penalty boxes, Schenn wondered if Martin wanted to go again before the end of the period. True to form, Martin was looking for a second scrap. As Schenn said on the bench, "He asked me for another one. I'm like, 'C'mon, let me at least have a shift!'"
When Tampa forward Alex Killorn was ejected from Game 2 for hitting Brock Nelson of the Islanders from behind, Lightning coach Jon Cooper told his bench that regardless of what the ruling was, they had to kill off the penalty and keep battling. Apparently, Patrick Maroon didn't consider the possibility that Killorn might be ejected, as he turned to Cooper and uttered "He's done?!" with childlike confusion.
Best bubble life
Hockey Players. Baseball. Football Stadium. 🤔— NHL (@NHL) September 17, 2020
Catch up with the @TBLightning on an off day during the Eastern Conference Finals on the latest episode of Quest for the #StanleyCup! New episode now streaming on ESPN+! pic.twitter.com/J6teSiFtEh
It's always fun to see the players get to have their little field day at the local stadium. Not only because they can leave the hotel for a few hours to see some grass and sunlight, but also because of their natural joy in trying to excel at other sports. Look no further than Victor Hedman of the Lightning, getting his Bjorn Nittmo on with some field goal attempts.
After the Lightning lost in overtime to the Islanders in Game 3, Cal Clutterbuck was walking past the Tampa dressing room when he heard loud, frustrated yelling. So he stopped, turned to the door and screamed out "F---ing right!" at the door. Back in the day, this results in a "Daredevil"-like hallway fight. Not so much today.
Robin Lehner. There hasn't been much serious discussion on the show about the mental strain of the bubble, so using the Vegas Golden Knights goalie as an entry point to that was a smart decision. He talked about how he's coped with "his ongoing struggles with both depression and anxiety," including medication and remote discussions with his counselor. "I think Robin's going to go down as a pioneer in this area," said Vegas coach Peter DeBoer.
We're spending a lot of time at the rink but not enough of it inside the bubble hotel. C'mon, where's the one bar that all the players hit after their game is done?
Any lingering questions after watching?
I *think* this is peanut butter that Kevin Shattenkirk is using here on QUEST FOR THE STANLEY CUP? It was viscous. pic.twitter.com/I5DK1dNrUT— Greg Wyshynski (@wyshynski) September 17, 2020
What is Kevin Shattenkirk eating on his toast? It seemed too runny to be peanut butter, although it could be organic. Perhaps another butter? Cashew or apple? In any case ... yuck.