The New York Islanders have finally done it. It took them 23 years, but they won their first series since 1993.
With the Isles trailing 1-0 in the final minute of regulation, it looked like we were headed to Game 7 in Sunrise, Florida. John Tavares had other ideas.
Instead of shipping down to Florida for another game, Tavares took it upon himself to send the Panthers packing. The 25-year-old made sure his team wouldn’t go down without a fight. With 53.2 seconds left in the third period, Tavares got the Islanders on the board …1-1 (top).
There was a little controversy surrounding the goal. Moments before Tavares scored the game-tying goal, Matt Martin tripped Vincent Trocheck in the Islanders zone, but the officials decided against making a call.
You be the judge:
The first overtime period solved nothing, but guess who was back at it in the second OT. If you guessed Tavares, you’re right.
Tavares had with six shots on goal and two blocked shots in 34:49 of ice time in Game 6.
“It was a little bit of a frustrating night for me,” Tavares told Sportsnet after the game. “It was tough to get going a little bit. (The Panthers) were doing a good job and I just tried to battle through it. You play right to the end and you never know what’s going to happen and you stay with it. That’s kind of been our season a little bit. I’m just happy to come through.”
Predictably, people on Twitter were pretty impressed by Tavares’ work.
The Islanders will now take on the Bolts in the second round.