The New York Islanders found a way as they defeated the Boston Bruins in overtime of Game 2 to even the series at one game apiece. Fourth-line centerman Casey Cizikas scored his first goal of the playoffs, and boy was it a big one coming in overtime. This story and more in today’s daily links!
Casey Cizikas wouldn’t have been the first person that came to mind when trying to pick a game-winner, but the fourth-liner came up big when the New York Islanders needed him the most. Cizikas scored the game-winning goal on Monday on the breakaway to clinch Game 2 for the Islanders in overtime, 4-3, and send their series with the Boston Bruins back to Long Island even at 1-1. The OT winner was Cizikas’ first postseason goal since April 21, 2015, against a Barry Trotz-led Washington Capitals team. (NYI Hockey Now)
There are some intensely interesting situations hovering on the horizon while the NHL playoffs dominate the news. While the Vegas Golden Knights and Colorado Avalanche begin the most anticipated series in a few years, the Pittsburgh Penguins have a huge decision looming with center Evgeni Malkin. If he waived his no-movement clause and hit the NHL Trade market, would the Florida Panthers, who have been monitoring the situation, bite on the chance? (NYI Hockey Now)
The Islanders did it the hard way. The key being, they did it. “This is a character win,” coach Barry Trotz said. “There is no one that has bigger character in our dressing room and is more loved than Casey [Cizikas]. When he came in, our room exploded with guys hugging him.” (Newsday)
Give Barry Trotz credit for this: He does not care what you or I or anyone else thinks about his lineup, a right he has earned given his resume. On Monday night, the Islanders coach demonstrated again that he knows what he is doing when he made a pair of counterintuitive decisions that paid off. Before Game 2 of a second-round playoff series against the Bruins, he surprised many by replacing Ilya Sorokin with Semyon Varlamov in goal and choosing not to replace Leo Komarov on the struggling first line. (Newsday)
On a night when there were definitely a few funny bounces going against the Boston Bruins, it was one final one in OT that ended up sinking them in a 4-3 overtime loss to the New York Islanders in Game 2 at TD Garden. (Boston Hockey Now)
Over the weekend, Elliotte Friedman reported that Seth Jones has informed the Columbus Blue Jackets that he won’t be re-signing after next season. Should the Flyers go make a trade for the talented defenseman? (Philly Hockey Now)
The Florida Panthers will be moving to the east side of town in the near future after breaking ground on a new training facility at War Memorial Auditorium in Fort Lauderdale. The team is targeting to have the state-of-the-art facility, one that will feature two ice sheets and stadium seating for team workouts, open before training camp starts in 2022. (Florida Hockey Now)
Ryan Reaves has been suspended for two games by the NHL Department of Player Safety for his actions in the third period of the Vegas Golden Knights 7-1 loss to the Colorado Avalanche on Sunday night. Reaves retaliated on Colorado Avalanche defenseman Ryan Graves, who injured Golden Knights forward Mattias Janmark in the second period with a late, high hit. (Vegas Hockey Now)
NHL commissioner Gary Bettman upheld the eight-game suspension to Nazem Kadri today. He explained his rationale in a lengthy document, which you can read in full here. (Colorado Hockey Now)
Kyle and JD debate if Alexander Barabanov is a true top-six forward. We start by discussing his role on the San Jose Sharks and who he was playing with, then why he was traded by Toronto (5:00). We then dissect his KHL statistics and how those should adjust to the NHL (9:30), what his future role should look like (15:00), and if he will be on the San Jose Sharks during the 2022-23 season (18:00). Plus we explain how you can win an awesome prize just for leaving a review (20:00)! (San Jose Hockey Now)
Carey Price made 30 saves, and the Montreal Canadiens eliminated the Toronto Maple Leafs with a 3-1 victory in Game 7 of the Stanley Cup First Round at Scotiabank Arena on Monday. Montreal, which trailed the best-of-7 series 3-1 before winning three straight games, will face the Winnipeg Jets in the second round beginning Wednesday at Winnipeg. (NHL)
John Tavares took part in an optional morning skate with the Toronto Maple Leafs prior to Game 7 of the Stanley Cup First Round against the Montreal Canadiens on Monday, but the center did not play in the 3-1 loss at Scotiabank Arena in Toronto. Tavares sustained a concussion and knee injury during Game 1 on May 20. The knee injury was projected to sideline Toronto’s captain for a minimum of two weeks, and no timetable was given for a return from the concussion. (NHL)
The Carolina Hurricanes believe they have a sound plan to get the best of Tampa Bay Lightning goalie Andrei Vasilevskiy in the Stanley Cup Second Round. Vasilevskiy already has the upper hand in the best-of-7 series, making 37 saves in Tampa Bay’s 2-1 win in Game 1 on Sunday, and Carolina is aware it needs to execute better when it hosts Game 2 on Tuesday. (NHL)
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