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Tavares' heroics send Islanders to second round

NHL news and notes

by NHL Public Relations @NHL

John Tavares (2-0-2) tied the game with 53.2 seconds remaining in the third period and scored at 10:41 of double-overtime to guide the New York Islanders to their first playoff series win since the 1993 Patrick Division Final against the Pittsburgh Penguins (4-3 W).

* The Islanders earned their third overtime win of the Eastern Conference First Round, two of which required multiple extra sessions (also Game 5). Per Elias, it marked the second time in franchise history the Islanders won two games that required multiple overtimes in a single series (also Games 2 and 4 of 1993 DSF vs. WSH). Elias adds the 1993 Patrick Division Semifinals against the Washington Capitals was also the only other instance where the Islanders won three games in overtime within a single series (also Game 3).

* Via Elias, the Islanders also became the first team to win consecutive games in multiple overtime periods within a single playoff series since the Oilers in 1991 (Games 2 and 3 of DF vs. LAK).

* Tavares, the Islanders' all-time leader in regular-season overtime goals with eight, scored his second career overtime goal in the postseason (also Game 3 of 2015 FR vs. WSH).

* Per Elias, Tavares became the seventh player in Islanders history to score a series-clinching goal in overtime and the second to do so in multiple overtime periods, joining Pat LaFontaine's "Easter Epic" winner in Game 7 of the 1987 Patrick Division Semifinals at WSH (3-2 4OT W).

* Elias adds that Tavares became the first player in Islanders history to score a game-tying goal in the final minute of the third period and then score the overtime winner in a playoff game. The only other instance in franchise history the Islanders accomplished the same feat was in Game 3 of the 1993 Patrick Division Semifinals against the Capitals, when Pierre Turgeon tied the game at 19:17 of the third period and Ray Ferraro scored at 4:46 of overtime (4-3 OT W).

* Tavares, who shares the NHL lead with five postseason goals and led all Islanders with five goals and nine points in the first round, has 11 goals and 20 points in his past 19 games since March 31 (regular season and playoffs).

* The Islanders will face the Tampa Lightning in the Eastern Conference Second Round, the second all-time playoff matchup between the teams and first since the 2004 Conference Quarterfinals (4-1 TBL W).

Home Team in Caps

Washington 1, PHILADELPHIA 0 - WSH wins 4-2
Dallas 5, MINNESOTA 4 - DAL wins 4-2
NY ISLANDERS 2, Florida 1 (2OT) - NYI wins 4-2

Braden Holtby turned aside all 26 shots he faced to outduel Flyers goalie and former teammate Michal Neuvirth (28 SV), Nicklas Backstrom's second period goal stood as the game-winner and the Presidents' Trophy-winning Capitals eliminated the Philadelphia Flyers in Game 6 of their first-round series.

Video: WSH@PHI, Gm6: Backstrom buries home Johansson's feed

* Per Elias, the six goals allowed by the Capitals in their first-round series with the Flyers were the fewest in a best-of-seven Stanley Cup Playoffs series in their history.

* Holtby earned his fourth career playoff shutout and second of the series (also Game 1: 19 SV). Per Elias, he became the third goaltender in Capitals history to earn two shutouts in a single playoff series, joining Olie Kolzig (1998 CSF vs. OTT) and Semyon Varlamov (2009 CQF vs. NYR).

* Elias adds that Holtby became the second goaltender in Capitals history to record a series-clinching shutout, joining Kolzig (29 SV) in Game 5 of the 1998 Eastern Conference Semifinals against the Ottawa Senators (3-0 W).

* Backstrom, who scored his fourth career postseason game-winning goal, led all Capitals with two goals and seven points in the first round.

The Capitals will face the Penguins in the second round, their ninth all-time meeting and first since the 2009 Eastern Conference Semifinals when Sidney Crosby and Alex Ovechkin continuously one-upped each other in a thrilling seven game series ultimately won by the Penguins. Pittsburgh would then go on to capture its third Stanley Cup championship.

* In Game 2 of that 2009 series, a 4-3 Capitals win to take a 2-0 series lead, Crosby and Ovechkin each had hat tricks. In Game 7, a 6-2 Penguins victory, Crosby had two goals and an assist.

* At the end of the close seven game set, which saw three games require overtime and five decided by a single goal, Ovechkin finished with eight goals and 14 points (1 GWG) and Crosby had eight goals and 13 points (1 GWG).

The Dallas Stars built a 4-0 lead heading into the third period but had to hold off a surging Minnesota Wild rally that included four third-period goals to win their first playoff series since the 2008 Western Conference Semifinals against the San Jose Sharks (4-2 W).

* Jason Spezza (1-3-4) equaled a playoff career high with four points (also Game 3 of 2006 CQF at TBL: 0-4-4 w/ OTT). Per Elias, he became the third player in Stars/North Stars history to earn four points in a series-clinching win, joining Dave Balon (1-3-4) and Milan Marcetta (2-2-4) who each did so in Game 7 of the 1968 Quarterfinals at the Los Angeles Kings (9-4 W).

Video: DAL@MIN, Gm6: Spezza adds to lead in 1st period

* Stars captain Jamie Benn (1-2-3) has earned at least one point in all six of Dallas' games to begin the 2016 Stanley Cup Playoffs (4-6-10). Per Elias, he is one game shy of tying the longest point streak to begin a postseason in Stars/North Stars history, set by Dino Ciccarelli in 1983 (4-6-10 in 7 GP).

* The Stars will play the winner of Game 7 between the St. Louis Blues and Chicago Blackhawks in the Western Conference Second Round.

ICYMI: Stars goaltender Kari Lehtonen, who played after backing up Antti Niemi in Games 4 and 5, made a pad save on the goal line with 34 seconds remaining in the third period to prevent the Wild from tying the game.

* Capitals goaltender Braden Holtby registered his 20th career playoff win to tie Olie Kolzig for the most in franchise history. He has allowed no more than one goal in 17 of those victories, including each of his last 14 since Game 6 of the 2012 Eastern Conference Semifinals against the New York Rangers.

* Panthers forward Jaromir Jagr skated in his 208th career playoff game to tie Wayne Gretzky for 16th place in NHL history among skaters/goaltenders.

Flyers goaltender Michal Neuvirth (28 SV) denied 103 of 105 shots through three starts in the first round (0.67 GAA, .981 SV%, 1 SO). . . Wild defensemen Jonas Brodin (1-1-2) and Jared Spurgeon (2-0-2) scored 16 seconds apart in the third period, the fastest two postseason goals in franchise history. . . The Empire State Building was turned orange and blue to celebrate the Islanders series win. . . NHL LiveWire: Blues captain David Backes was mic'd up for Game 6 at Chicago . . . The Wild honored the life of iconic musician Prince prior to Game 6 against the Stars. The Minneapolis, Minnesota native passed away on Thursday.

All Times Eastern
Anaheim @ Nashville, ANA leads 3-2, 8:00 p.m., CNBC, TVAS, SN, FS-TN, FS-W
Chicago @ St. Louis, series tied 3-3, 8:30 p.m., NBCSN, CBC, TVAS, CSN-CH

The Blues play the Blackhawks on Monday in the first Game 7 of the 2016 Stanley Cup Playoffs. The winner of the game will face the Stars in the second round.

* In their 11 previous series clashes in the Stanley Cup Playoffs, these longtime division rivals have played in a Game 7 just once, in the 1990 Norris Division Final. Led by a five-point performance from Steve Larmer (1-4-5), the Blackhawks chased Blues starting goaltender Vincent Riendeau and earned an 8-2 victory at Chicago Stadium.

* The Blues will be playing their first Game 7 in 13 years and the 15th in their history (6-8). Their last victory in a Game 7 occurred in 1999. Led by current Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville, the Blues earned a 1-0 overtime win at the Phoenix Coyotes in a Western Conference Quarterfinal series.

* The Blackhawks will skate in a Game 7 for a fourth consecutive season, for the fifth time in the past six seasons and 14th overall (7-6). The Blackhawks have split their four Game 7 decisions under Quenneville from 2011-2015. They forced a Game 7 after trailing 3-1 in the series three times in that span, a feat they have repeated again this year against the Blues.


* Home teams are 94-67 (.584) all-time in Game 7s in the Stanley Cup Playoffs, including a 3-2 mark in 2015.

* The team that scores first is 119-42 all-time (.739), including a 4-1 mark in 2015.

* Forty Game 7s have required overtime (40-of-161, 24.8%). Home and road teams each have 20 wins.

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