Detroit — How will the Red Wings, seemingly in total control, recover from this one?
Tampa Bay shockingly tied the game late in the third period Thursday night with two quick goals, then Tyler Johnson scored 2 minutes, 25 seconds into overtime, as the Lightning rallied and defeated the Red Wings, 3-2.
Victor Hedman slid a nice pass through the slot to Johnson on a 2-on-1 rush, Johnson scoring his second goal (third point of the night) and fourth goal of the series as the Lightning shocked the Red Wings.
"Very disappointing right now, but it's over and we have to let it go and get ready for the next game," said goaltender Petr Mrazek, who appeared to be cruising to a victory along with his teammates.
The best-of-seven series is tied 2-2 with Saturday's Game 5 in Tampa Bay, which will be at 6 p.m.
Gustav Nyquist and Joakim Andersson scored goals for the Red Wings.
Johnson and Ondrej Palat scored 1:17 apart late in the third period, erasing a 2-0 Red Wings lead, both incidentally, after Luke Glendening went out with a hand injury.
Glendening's line had done a tremendous job shutting down Johnson's line, but Glendening cut his hand during a scrum midway through the third period.
"It's frustrating," Glendening said. "We played a good game but in the end we came up short and we have to come back."
Glendening was confident he would return for Game 5.
"Nothing too serious," he said. "It's good."
Not having Glendening hurt, coach Mike Babcock said, but the Red Wings hurt themselves with three defensive misplays the Lightning capitalized on.
"For as well as we played, those are three crucial mistakes in a short period of time," Babcock said. "They're all on us. They're our responsibility. It's not something they did, it's something we did.
"But that's part of the game. You have to play the whole 60 minutes. It doesn't matter who gets hurt. You have to play the whole 60 minutes."
The Red Wings appeared to grab control after Andersson's fluky goal gave them a 2-0 lead at 14:24 of the second period, a goal that will live in hockey blooper videos for a long time.
Andersson's long shot was stopped by goaltender Ben Bishop, but the puck bounced high and Bishop nicked it with his blocker.
The puck proceeded to hit the crossbar and tumble delicately over the goal line, Bishop scrambling backward to try to stop it and the Red Wings celebrating an unexpected, huge goal.
To Bishop's credit, he didn't allow another goal and played effectively, making 22 saves in the game (Mrazek had 26).
"Give Bish credit, he shut the door after that," Lightning coach Jon Cooper said.
Nyquist opened the game's scoring at 5:42 of the second period, ending a 12-game goal-less drought in the playoffs.
He chipped the puck into the zone and Henrik Zetterberg got control of it and backhanded a nice pass across the crease to an open Nyquist, who easily tapped the puck past Bishop.
The feeling in the Red Wings locker room afterward was that the Lightning had stolen this game, much like the Red Wings stole Game 1 in Tampa Bay.
"I never talk to our guys after games ever, hardly ever," Babcock said. "Tonight I talked to them just about that (momentum shift). I believe that we stole Game 1 and they just stole this game.
"So to me, it should be 2-2. Here it is, the best of three. Let's play."