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NHL roundup: Islanders advance in Stanley Cup playoffs after 5-1 win over Panthers

New York Islanders' Mathew Barzal scores as he gets the puck past Florida Panthers goalie Sergei Bobrovsky
New York Islanders’ Mathew Barzal scores as he gets the puck past Florida Panthers goalie Sergei Bobrovsky, with Mark Pysyk (13) and Mike Hoffman (68) of the Florida Panthers defending.
(Andre Ringuette / Freestyle Photo / Getty Images)

Anthony Beauvillier scored twice, and the New York Islanders beat the Florida Panthers 5-1 to clinch their preliminary round playoff series in four games on Friday at Toronto.

Brock Nelson and Mathew Barzal had a goal and assist each in a game the Islanders never trailed. Defenseman Ryan Pulock made a diving stick save to prevent Florida’s Aleksander Barkov from scoring into an open side to maintain New York’s 3-1 lead midway through the second period.

Semyon Varlamov stopped 24 shots, Jean-Gabriel Pageau scored an empty-netter, and the Eastern Conference’s seventh-seeded Islanders bounced back from a 3-2 loss in Game 3 on Wednesday.

New York will open the best-of-seven first-round series against a yet to be determined opponent next week.

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Mike Hoffman scored his Florida-leading third goal and fifth point of the series, while Sergei Bobrovsky proved inconsistent in stopping 33 shots.

Post-series handshakes are gone, but scrums remain as the NHL resumes during the COVID-19 era.

Coyotes 4, Predators 3

Brad Richardson scored on a rebound in overtime, Darcy Kuemper stopped 49 shots and Arizona advanced in the postseason for the first time in eight years at Edmonton, Canada.

The Coyotes, the Western Conference’s No. 11 seed, took a 2-0 lead early in the second period. But they allowed Nashville to tie it before going ahead 3-2 on Jordan Oesterle’s goal early in the third.

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Nashville pulled goalie Juuse Saros late in the period and Filip Forsberg tied it with 32 seconds left on a one-timer after Roman Josi kept the puck in Arizona’s zone.

Richardson won it after he redirected Vinnie Hinostroz’s shot and punched in the rebound past Saros to help the Coyotes win the Stanley Cup qualifier series 3-1.

Canadiens 2, Penguins 0

Artturi Lehkonen flipped a shot past Tristan Jarry with 4:11 remaining to lift Montreal to a stunning victory and clinching the Canadiens’ first playoff berth in three years.

Shea Weber added an empty-net goal in the final seconds as the 12th-seeded Canadiens captured the best-of-five qualifying round over fifth-seeded Pittsburgh in four games. Carey Price stopped 22 shots to collect his sixth career playoff shutout. Montreal will advance to the first round of the playoffs against either Tampa Bay or Philadelphia.

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Tristan Jarry made 20 saves in his first career playoff start, including a stellar glove save to thwart a breakaway by Montreal’s Brendan Gallagher early in the third period. Pittsburgh’s star-laden lineup, including captain Sidney Crosby, provided little support.

Blackhawks 3, Oilers 2

Brandon Saad, Matthew Highmore and Dominik Kubalik scored and Chicago beat Edmonton, knocking the Oilers out of the postseason tournament.

The Blackhawks won the best-of-five qualifying series 3-1. Chicago advances to the round of 16.

Josh Archibald and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins scored for Edmonton.

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The Oilers had been expected to beat Chicago, given they were the fifth-seeded team in the Western Conference tournament and the Hawks were the bottom seed at 12.

Maple Leafs 4, Blue Jackets 3

Auston Matthews scored on a power play 13:10 into overtime and Toronto rallied from a three-goal deficit in the third period to beat Columbus, tying the best-of-five qualifying series at two wins apiece.

The Leafs scored three times in 3:34 to knot the score late in a game that Columbus and goalie Elvis Merzlikins had largely controlled until then. On Thursday night, the Blue Jackets had rallied from a three goals down to eventually win in overtime.

This time, with Nick Foligno in the penalty box for tripping, Matthews beat Elvis Merzlikins from the right circle to push the series to a decisive Game 5 on Sunday.


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