Lightning Strikes Devils In Playoff Opener

The Tampa Bay Lightning are off to a strong start in the NHL playoffs.

The top seed in the Eastern Conference got early goals from four players before holding off the New Jersey Devils for a 5-2 victory.

Ondrej Palat, Tyler Johnson and Yanni Gourde scored, helping the Lightning build a 3-0 lead.

Taylor Hall scored an unassisted goal in the second period, then assisted on Travis Zajac's power-play goal that trimmed the Devils' deficit to 3-2 midway through third against Andrei Vasilievskiy, who had 29 saves for Tampa Bay.

The Capitals blew leads of 2-0 and 3-2 in their 4-3 overtime loss to the Blue Jackets in DC in Game One of the Eastern Conference quarterfinals.

Filip Forsberg scored twice in the third period to help the Predators pull away from the Avalanche 5-2 in Nashville.

Martin Jones turned away all 25 shots he faced as the Sharks blanked the Ducks 3-0 in Game One of their first-round playoff series in Anaheim.   Evander Kane scored a pair of goals in a three-goal second for San Jose.