NHL Playoffs 2011 Second-Round Matchups: Capitals To Face Tampa Bay Lightning In Second Round

Finally, the second round of the 2011 NHL Playoffs have been completed. The Washington Capitals will face a division rival, as they will take on the No. 5 seed Tampa Bay Lightning. The Lightning advanced by rallying from a 3-1 series deficit and defeat the No. 4 seed Pittsburgh Penguins, taking Game 7 on Pittsburgh's home ice, 1-0. Dwyane Roloson was spectacular, and the Lightning held off a Penguins power play at the end of the game to win it.

The matchup is certainly an intriguing one for the Capitals, though it of course is not as dramatic as a matchup with the Penguins. The Lightning held the Southeast Division lead for much of the season, but the Capitals caught and overtook them down the stretch, winning the division by four points. The Capitals won three times in regulation and once in a shootout, while the Lightning won once in regulation and once in overtime this season.

The Montreal Canadiens could have been the Capitals' opponent had they won in Game 7 against the Boston Bruins. The Canadiens looked poised to do that when they tied the game at 3 with 1:57 remaining in the third period on a slap shot by P.K. Subban. However, the Bruins won in early in overtime on a goal by Nathan Horton just 5:43 minutes into the period. The win ensured the Bruins would face the Philadelphia Flyers, leaving the Capitals to face the Penguins-Lightning winner.

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