Brendan Gallagher opened the door to the roof of Bell Centre, the Montreal Canadiens forward pointing out various sights of the city, including Mount Royal and Saint-Catherine Street.
“Of course, they pick the guy who’s terrified of heights to do this,” Gallagher said to start the fourth episode of the sixth season of “Quest for the Stanley Cup,” a seven-part, all-access series. The episode premieres Friday at 6 p.m. ET on ESPN+ in the United States and YouTube.com/NHL in Canada.
“I think it was my second year (2014), we made it to this point, haven’t been back since,” Gallagher said of the Canadiens, who are playing the Vegas Golden Knights in the Stanley Cup Semifinals for a chance to advance to the Final.
“It takes a lot of work, a lot of sacrifice, a lot of disappointment along the way. It’s been since 1993 since the Stanley Cup has come back home to Canada. It’s not going to be easy, but to be able to bring that back home would be pretty special.”
Meanwhile, in Uniondale, New York, former Islanders defenseman Denis Potvin walks onto the ice at Nassau Coliseum before the Islanders play the Tampa Bay Lightning in Game 4 of their best-of-7 semifinal. Potvin, who won the Cup with the Islanders four straight seasons from 1980-83, reminisced on those days, especially the 1980 Cup win at home.
“When you’re able to win in front of your own fans, it’s phenomenal,” he said. “Our parents, our friends were here, holding the Cup, my father’s drinking out of it, my mother’s helping me lift it. the first one was great.
“Cups two and three, we were a well-oiled machine by then. It was just working. The fourth one was even better, beating the Oilers in four straight [games] when we had ‘no chance’ of winning. Those were the best days of my life, playing hockey.”
The Islanders defeated the Lightning 3-2 to tie the best-of-7 series.
In Montreal, the Canadiens sit in their locker room as coach Dominique Ducharme gives his pregame speech via Zoom prior to Game 3 against the Golden Knights. Ducharme tested positive for COVID-19 prior to Game 3 and has had to isolate at home since. The Canadiens responded with a 3-2 win.
Game 4 footage shows Golden Knights goalie Robin Lehner with a response of his own. Lehner started the game, his first since allowing seven goals on 37 shots in a 7-1 loss to the Colorado Avalanche in Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Second Round on May 30. Lehner made 27 saves in a 2-1 overtime victory as the Golden Knights tied the best-of-7 series 2-2. After the game, cameras focus on Lehner, who said he was motivated by negative pregame reactions on social media regarding his start.
“I sat for two hours and watched you guys talk [stuff] on Twitter on me,” he said. “It’s just great motivation for me. It was very enjoyable on Twitter today and thank you guys very much for giving me that motivation.”
Back in Tampa prior to Game 5, barista Sam Egger of DI Coffee Bar is preparing coffee orders for Lightning players, including defenseman Ryan McDonagh.
“Ryan gets a cold-brew with sugar free vanilla with skim milk,” she said. “We see him, or we see his truck, we already have it ready for him.”
McDonagh talked at the coffee bar about Islanders defenseman Ryan Pulock coming out of nowhere to save his would-be, game-tying shot in the waning seconds of New York’s 3-2 win against the Lightning in Game 4 — “as a fellow defenseman, you really respect what Pulock did for his team there.”
But the end of the episode shows the Lightning coming up huge in Game 5 with their 8-0 victory over the Islanders to take the series lead.
“We have a lot of competitors on this team, guys that hate to lose, and we all earned it tonight,” McDonagh said. “It all came together for a perfect storm tonight.”