Sunday, April 17, 2016

Islanders Top Panthers In Game 3 Overtime

     The Florida Panthers fell two games to one in the first round series with a 4-3 overtime loss to the New York Islanders at Barclays Center on Sunday night. It was the first Stanley Cup playoff game held at Barclays Center after the Islanders franchise played their previous 43 seasons at the Nassau Coliseum.
     Reilly Smith collected his fourth goal of the series at 2:25 on assists from Alex Petrovic and rookie Mike Matheson. It was the third consecutive game of the series that the Panthers scored in the first five minutes of the contest.
     They extended their lead at 1:11 of the second period. Smith took a high shot from the high slot that went over the Islanders cage and off the back glass. It rebounded to Aleksander Barkov to the left side of the crease and he knocked it in for the goal and a Panthers 2-0 margin.
     After the Panthers had a goal by Aaron Ekblad disallowed three minutes later due to an offside call, New York found the net at 5:21 of the second as Ryan Pulock scored on the power play from long range with assists credited to Kyle Okposo and John Tavares.
     Florida regained their two-goal lead at 7:23 of the period. Smith skated by a defenseman as he went through the left circle and put a backhand shot on net. Nick Bjugstad had the rebound hit his left skate and banged off the post before he finished the play with a tip-in shot for his second goal of the postseason.  
     The scoring continued in the second period as the Islanders got a goal at 11:48. Pulock controlled the puck on the right point and centered it from the right wing. Shane Prince scored from the slot area with a wrist shot past Roberto Luongo.
     The Isles tied it up 3-3 with 3:05 left in the second period when Frans Nielsen scored on the power play as Okposo and Tavares added their fourth assists of the series.
     New York won on an overtime goal by Thomas Hickey with 7:29 remaining in the extra session. After Petrovic lost the puck on the end wall to Josh Bailey, Brock Nelson backhanded the puck from behind the Panthers cage to the slot and Hickey followed with a one-time shot.

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