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game recap

Hurricanes rally to defeat Islanders in Game 2, extend series lead

Score twice early in third period; Carolina goalie Mrazek injured

by Mike G. Morreale @mikemorrealeNHL / NHL.com Staff Writer

Niederreiter's pretty tip-in goal

CAR@NYI, Gm2: Niederreiter breaks tie with deflection

R2, Gm2: Nino Niederreiter redirects Teuvo Teravainen's snap shot from the point past Robin Lehner to give the Hurricanes a 2-1 lead

  • 00:48 •

NEW YORK -- The Carolina Hurricanes scored twice in 48 seconds early in the third period, and Curtis McElhinney made 17 saves in relief in a 2-1 win against the New York Islanders in Game 2 of the Eastern Conference Second Round at Barclays Center on Sunday.

The Hurricanes lead the best-of-7 series 2-0 with Game 3 at Carolina on Wednesday.

Warren Foegele scored his Hurricanes-leading fifth goal of the Stanley Cup Playoffs with a wrist shot from the right face-off circle 17 seconds into the third. Nino Niederreiter scored his first on a deflection from the slot at 1:05 to give Carolina a 2-1 lead.

 

[WATCH: All Hurricanes vs. Islanders highlights | Complete series coverage]

 

Hurricanes goalie Petr Mrazek, who made 31 saves in Game 1, left the game with a lower-body injury  6:27 into the second period. It appeared he was injured making a save against Leo Komarov at 2:07.

McElhinney, 35, playing for the first time in 22 days, made 10 saves in the second and seven in the third for his first NHL playoff win in three games, all in relief. 

"[McElhinney]'s been great all year, so there was no, 'Oh no, we have to put that guy in,'" Hurricanes coach Rod Brind'Amour said. "It was more, 'This is how this night is going, we're dropping like flies, and now our goalie goes down.' I certainly loved the fact that [McElhinney] was there ready to rock and roll."

Video: CAR@NYI, Gm2: McElhinney makes back-to-back saves

Carolina has won four straight and six of its past seven playoff games.

"I'm not really surprised by our play because we've been playing playoff hockey the entire second half of the season," Foegele said. "This is a real resilient group, and we keep getting injuries each game, but someone else is stepping up, whether that's blocking shots or contributing in some way. This group's real resilient, and I'm really proud of the group."

Niederreiter said, "We had to stick to the game plan, get pucks to the net and traffic in front of their goalie, and that's exactly what we did," 

Mathew Barzal gave the Islanders a 1-0 lead on a power-play goal 13:17 into the first period. Barzal's attempted pass below the left circle to Josh Bailey deflected off the stick of Hurricanes defenseman Jaccob Slavin. The goal ended Mrazek's shutout streak of 135:04, dating to Game 7 of the first round against the Washington Capitals.

Video: CAR@NYI, Gm2: Barzal scores PPG as pass deflects in

"That's the way it goes sometimes," Bailey said. "It could be 2-0 us, but it's 0-2. We can't get down. We still feel good about our group and have confidence that we can turn this around."

Devon Toews thought he gave the Islanders a 2-0 lead with 14 seconds remaining in the second period when his attempt to kick the puck into the slot with his right skate hit McElhinney's left pad and went into the net. The referees ruled no goal because Toews used a distinct kicking motion, and the NHL Situation Room supported the call on the ice. 

"We didn't get any of those [bounces] today," New York defenseman Ryan Pulock said. "We had some pretty good chances to score and it was just millimeters away. But there's a lot of hockey left here. It's just important that we prepare ourselves for Game 3."

Islanders goalie Robin Lehner made 16 saves.

In addition to the Mrazek injury, the Hurricanes lost defenseman Trevor van Riemsdyk (upper body) 32 seconds into the first period and right wing Saku Maenalanen (upper body) 3:03 into the third.

"We have a lot of belief within these walls; we all know the guy next to you is going to give it his all and continue to battle," Slavin said. "It's what we've been all year, a hardworking team. Hopefully we can keep doing that."

Video: CAR@NYI, Gm2: Foegele's blistering wrister ties it

 

They said it

"I was looking at [Petr Mrazek] and I knew something was up, so I knew I was going in there at that point. You just grab your helmet and go. To go in there without a lot of practice, it does have its challenges, but I felt pretty good getting in there." -- Hurricanes goalie Curtis McElhinney on his relief appearance

"They play very structured. I feel like it's similar to the way we play. You can't let frustration set in. We've found ways to frustrate teams throughout the year and in the playoffs. You can't let them reverse it back on you. You've got to just stick with it, and we will. I'm sure we'll tweak a couple things here and there, but really Game 3 is about finding a way to get the win, first and foremost." -- Islanders left wing Josh Bailey

 

Need to know 

Injured Hurricanes forwards Andrei Svechnikov (concussion protocol), Micheal Ferland (upper body) and Jordan Martinook (lower body) did not play. ... Carolina took a 2-0 lead on the road in a playoff series for the second time in Hurricanes/Hartford Whalers history. Hartford had a three-game sweep against the Quebec Nordiques in the Adams Division Semifinals in 1986. ... Slavin led all skaters in ice time (27:21). ... Barzal scored his first NHL playoff goal. … Islanders coach Barry Trotz had no update on forward Cal Clutterbuck, who was helped off the ice by teammate Matt Martin after the game ended.

 

What's next

Game 3 of Eastern Conference Second Round at PNC Arena on Wednesday (7 p.m. ET; NBCSN, CBC, SN, TVAS)

Video: Hurricanes edge Islanders to grab 2-0 series lead

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