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game recap

Islanders defeat Penguins in OT, take Game 1

Bailey scores at 4:39, Lehner makes 41 saves

by Shawn P. Roarke @sroarke_nhl / NHL Senior Director of Editorial

Bailey's overtime winner

PIT@NYI, Gm1: Bailey wins it in OT for Islanders

R1, Gm1: Mathew Barzal hits the post, but Josh Bailey is there to fire the puck into the net to give the Islanders a 4-3 overtime victory

  • 00:52 •

UNIONDALE, N.Y. -- Josh Bailey scored 4:39 into overtime to give the New York Islanders a 4-3 win against the Pittsburgh Penguins in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference First Round at Nassau Coliseum on Wednesday.

Bailey scored off a rebound of a shot off the post by Mathew Barzal. 

"I was kind of tired," Bailey said. "I was just trying to catch up. Fortunately, [Barzal] made a great play and showed a lot of poise. We got the bounce that we needed. We've become accustomed to that. [Barzal] did it yet again."

 

[WATCH: Penguins vs. Islanders Game 1 highlights | Complete series coverage]

 

Game 2 of the best-of-7 series is here Friday.

Jordan Eberle, Brock Nelson and Nick Leddy scored for the Islanders, who hosted Game 1 for the first time since the 1988 Patrick Division Semifinals against the New Jersey Devils. Robin Lehner made 41 saves, including 16 on 17 shots in the first period.

"Robin made some huge saves at the right time," New York coach Barry Trotz said. "They're throwing a lot of pucks, they put pucks to those hard areas and they've got high-skilled guys who can turn those loose-puck type of battles or races into offense. I though he fought through all that and made some big saves at key times tonight."

Video: PIT@NYI, Gm1: Leddy fires knuckling puck by Murray

Evgeni Malkin, Phil Kessel and Justin Schultz each had a goal and an assist, and Matt Murray made 29 saves for the Penguins, who fell behind 1:40 into the first period. 

"The building was loud," Pittsburgh forward Jake Guentzel said. "It's their home ice and we knew they were going to come out strong. Not the way we wanted to start for sure. We have to start better next game and go from there."

The winning goal was reviewed for goaltender interference, but the call on the ice stood after officials determined that Penguins defenseman Kris Letang caused Barzal to make contact with Murray.

Bailey had a chance to score the game-winner late in the third period but hit the post with seven seconds remaining.

"That was tough to shake," he said. "I was worried I was going to have to see that one in my nightmares for a while. Little bit of redemption. I'm just happy to get the win. It's a crucial game, but there's still a long way to go."

Schultz tied the game 3-3 with 1:29 left in the third period with Murray pulled for an extra attacker.

"It's a tough building to play in," Schultz said. "The fans are on top of you. I liked how we battled back, but still lots to learn. … The guys have been here before, and we know it is going to be a long series."  

Video: PIT@NYI, Gm1: Schultz rips one-timer to tie it late

Lehner said there was no panic among the Islanders after Schultz scored.

"We were calm in here," said Lehner, who made the first Stanley Cup Playoff start of his career; he came on in relief twice for the Ottawa Senators in 2013 against the Penguins. "We knew we were going to win this game."

Leddy put the Islanders ahead 3-2 at 13:35 of the third on a point shot that hit off the left post for their third one-goal lead. 

Malkin tied it 2-2 at with a power-play goal at 13:41.

Nelson made it 2-1 at 15:46, finishing a four-pass sequence on the power play. 

Kessel tied it 1-1 at 5:42 of the first on a wrist shot from the high slot after Eberle gave New York a 1-0 lead by scoring on a rebound.

 

They said it

"It's everything we talked about for the last couple of days. Making sure we manage the puck and have situational awareness in mind. If we're late in shifts, especially when it's a long change from the bench, you have to make good decisions with the puck. If we had numbers and an opportunity for a potential scoring chance, I think that is a calculated risk. I'm not sure we had the awareness that we needed there in that situation." -- Penguins coach Mike Sullivan on the aggressive play by defenseman Kris Letang that led to a turnover and the winning goal

"Up and down, ups and downs during the game, we stayed focused the whole way. You can't let anything get to you. Good battles on the ice, overtime … that's playoff hockey right there going against an experienced group. It was a heck of a game by both teams. Could have gone either way." -- Islanders center Mathew Barzal

 

Need to know

Malkin has 13 points (three goals, 10 assists) in seven postseason games against New York. … Pittsburgh defenseman Brian Dumoulin, who missed the previous three games with a lower-body injury, replaced Jack Johnson. … The Islanders had a goal overturned after a coach's challenge for offside (first period), and a no-goal call upheld after review (overtime). Forward Tom Kuhnhackl was the shooter on each. … An NHL team that wins Game 1 has a best-of-7 series record of 467-214 (.686).

 

What's next

Game 2 of Eastern Conference First Round at Nassau Coliseum on Friday (7:30 p.m. ET; NBCSN, CBC, TVAS2, MSG, MSG+, ATTSN-PT)

Video: Bailey's OT goal gives Islanders 4-3 win in Game 1

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