Tha Sports Junkies 101

Hickey’s Overtime Goal lifts Islanders past Panthers in Game 3

Tha Sports Junkies 101-Sports News Lisa Gansky/via


BROOKLYN, NY-The Eastern Conference First Round series shifted to Barclays Center Sunday night, where the New York Islanders hosted the Florida Panthers in Game 3.

Home ice advantage is a good thing. However, the Isles didn’t benefit from it at the start.

Once again, Reilly Smith opened the scoring for the Cats, who took a 1-0 lead just 2:25 into the first period. Smith buried the rebound on his backhand for his fourth playoff goal.

As of April 17, Smith has four goals in this series, while the Isles only have six goals.

The Cats led 1-0 after 20 minutes.

The Cats scored another early goal in the second period. Smith’s shot from the slot went over the net, but Aleksander Barkov found his way to the rebound and lifted the puck into the net.

A Cats’ goal was about to make it a 3-0 game, but after the officials reviewed the play, it wasn’t a goal because the play was offside. The Isles continued to trail 2-0.

The Isles cut the lead in half, as Ryan Pulock scored his first goal of the series by piercing in a slap shot into the net. The Cats continued to lead 2-1 at 5:21.

Nick Bjugstad‘s second playoff goal extended the Cats’ lead to 3-1 at 7:23. Bjugstad dashed through the Isles’ zone to knock home a rebound, giving his team a two-goal cushion.

Shane Prince found some space in front of the Cats’ net, received a pass from Pulock and buried a wrist shot to make it a one-goal game at 11:48.

Then, New York tied the game at 3, as Frans Nielsen received a pass from John Tavares, made a backhand shot from the offside and shot the puck home to even the score on the power play.

Nielsen forced overtime with his second playoff goal with 3:05 left in regulation.

Brock Nelson sent a pass from behind the net to Thomas Hickey, who scored on a wrist shot to lift the Islanders to a 4-3 win over the Cats in overtime.

Isles forward Anders Lee is out after breaking his leg late in the season.

The Cats sent forward Rocco Grimaldi to the AHL.

Up Next: Islanders host the Panthers in Game 4 on Wednesday night. Puck drop is scheduled for 8:00 pm ET on USA, RSN, SunS, TVA2, MSG+

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NOTE: This article was written by new hockey writer Ana Kieu.