Luke Richardson saw a lot of positives, yet his run as acting coach of the Montreal Canadiens ended after a 2–0 loss to the defending champion Tampa Bay Lightning in the Stanley Cup Finals 3–1.
Tampa, Fla. – Luke Richardson saw a lot of positives, yet his run as acting coach for the Montreal Canadiens led to a 2–0 loss to defending champions Tampa in the Stanley Cup Finals after a hard 3–1 loss. Bay Lightning.
We’re getting better,” Richardson said after beating Montreal 43-23 on Wednesday night. “And we’re just planning to improve next game and win that game.”
Head coach Dominique Ducharme is expected to be back behind the bench for Game 3 on Friday night when the series moves to Montreal.
Richardson took the coaching reins for the third game of the semi-final series against Vegas, in which Montreal eventually won six games. It brought the tradition-ridden Canadiens back to the final for the first time since 1993.
After a 5-1 loss in Monday’s series opener, Montreal controlled the game for most of the first two periods on Wednesday, but trailed 2-1 after 40 minutes when Tampa Bay’s Blake Coleman defeated Kerry. Price with a diving goal in the last second.
“I thought people had a lot of character,” Richardson said. “They came out and worked hard in the third. And unfortunately it didn’t go our way. But I was confident that our players would come back and play our style of play and play it tough. And we did. “
Montreal prevented the Lightning-dominated power play from scoring on three occasions, with the Canadiens converting one of their three chances.
Still, it was not enough.
“So it’s a little disappointing to know that we’ve played a good game,” Richardson said. “But we did that last series. We played probably our best game in the last series against Vegas and we didn’t come out with a win (in Game 4). And the next game we stuck. And that’s what we plan to do again here.
“We will continue to do better,” Richardson said. “And we’re going. We’re going to find our offense and we’re going to start scoring some goals, and I think that will give us some confidence and I think it means we have more pucks.” So, I thought we did a better job tonight and we will continue to do better, and move on to the third game.”
More AP NHL: https://apnews.com/NHL and https://twitter.com/AP-SPORTS