Islanders Playoff Puck Talk – Game 3 at Pittsburgh
The New York Islanders went into Game 3 at Pittsburgh trying to accomplish everything they’ve done the first two games. It was all about playing their game, playing tight defense and being able to pounce on any opportunity the Pens gave them. They did all of that and much more in a decisive 4-1 victory to take a 3-0 series lead in the first round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs.
Game 3 – Sunday, April 14th 2019 – New York Islanders @ Pittsburgh Penguins
Score – 4-1 Islanders
Player of the game – Jordan Eberle
Grade – A
The Islanders kept the Penguins at bay for pretty much the entire game, minus the deflection midway through the first period by Garrett Wilson. Wilson took a Marcus Pettersson shot pass and deflected it past a screened Robin Lehner. However, 28 seconds later the Islanders tied it on a Jordan Eberle snipe from a near impossible angle. Eberle beat Matt Murray high from just above the red line.
The Islanders’ string of never relenting when down continued as they not only tied the game immediately but took the lead just a minute later. Brock Nelson got a nice feed from Tom Kuhnhackl near center ice, started on a 2-0n-1 with Josh Bailey, and decided to put one past Murray himself.
The second period was more of the same with the Islanders giving the Penguins nothing to shoot at, no room to maneuver and very few second chances. The Penguins were visibly frustrated in the second and it showed, as they took three penalties including a 5-0n-3 that the Islanders couldn’t convert on.
The Islanders continued their defensive-oriented attack as they trapped the Pens into playing their game. The Penguins thought they had opportunities and the Islanders sucked them in, took the puck from them, and played keep away for the majority of the third period. With just under ten minutes to go, they nearly sealed the deal when a Val Filppula pass in the slot was intentionally tipped to Anthony Beauvillier, who put it in the direction of Leo Komarov. Komarov snapped a short side shot past Matt Murray and gave the Islanders a 3-1 lead.
The Penguins had a short burst of energy after the third goal by Komarov but it was short lived. With just over two minutes to go Mike Sullivan pulled his goalie and tried to get two goals back. However, Captain Anders Lee floated an empty net attempt that went in and the game was over at 4-1.
It was an impressive effort by the Islanders in Pittsburgh because at the end of the day the Islanders have now completely outplayed the Penguins in the past two games. What seemed like an impossible task has now become a reality, and the Islanders are now just one game away from sweeping the Pittsburgh Penguins and making the second round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs.
- Once again, another strong game from Adam Pelech and Ryan Pulock. Pelech took a hard shot to the hip in the third period but he returned
- Leo Komarov’s goal in the third period was his first since January 20th
- Sidney Crosby and Jake Guentzel have yet to record a point in this series
- The only line to not score a goal for the Islanders is the fourth line. They’ve still made a lasting impact on this series so far
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