Thanks to a sensational goaltending performance from Tuukka Rask, a smothering defensive effort, and a Brad Marchand game-winner in overtime, the Boston Bruins were able to take Game 3 against the New York Islanders by a 2-1 margin.
That also gives them a 2-1 lead in the series with Game 4 taking place on Saturday night (7:15 p.m. ET, NBC).
Even though they found themselves in overtime in a tight, defensive slugfest, it was pretty clear that the Bruins were the better team for most of the night. They carried the play, significantly outshot and outchanced the Islanders, and were especially dominant in the third period territorially.
The only thing that really kept it close and got it to overtime was outstanding goaltending from Islanders goalie Semyon Varlamov.
But that came to an end in overtime when Marchand beat him from a terrible angle for the game-winning goal. You can see that goal in the video above.
Craig Smith, returning to the lineup after missing Game 2 of the series, opened the scoring for Boston in the first period to finish an outstanding shift from his line and Taylor Hall. Hall started the play with an aggressive backcheck that resulted in a takeaway to send the Bruins the other direction.
Mathew Barzal scored the lone goal for the Islanders in the third period. It is his first goal of the playoffs.
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The concerning news for the Bruins, though, will be the status of defenseman Brandon Carlo.
Carlo had to exit the game early in the third period after he was on the receiving end of a thunderous hit from Islanders forward Cal Clutterbuck in a race for the puck along the boards.
You can see the play here.
As Carlo was hit, his head hit hard off the glass. He immediately went down to the ice and struggled to return to his feet, needing to be helped off to the locker room by the training staff. Carlos is not only one of the Bruins’ top defenders and a significant part of their blue line, he also has a history of concussions. He missed significant time this season (he appeared in just 27 out of the 56 regular season games for the Bruins) due to a concussion he received following a big hit from Washington Capitals forward Tom Wilson.
Bruins coach Bruce Cassidy said they are not yet ruling him out for Game 4, but acknowledged they will know more on Friday morning.
BRUINS VS. ISLANDERS (Bruins lead series 2-1) – series livestream link
Game 1: Bruins 5, Islanders 2
Game 2: Islanders 4, Bruins 3 (OT)
Game 3: Thurs. June 3: Bruins 2, Islanders 1 (OT)
Game 4: Sat. June 5: Bruins at Islanders, 7:15 p.m. ET (NBC)
Game 5: Mon. June 7: Islanders at Bruins, 6:30 p.m. ET (NBCSN)
*Game 6: Wed. June 9: Bruins at Islanders TBD
*Game 7: Fri. June 11: Islanders at Bruins TBD
Adam Gretz is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow him on Twitter @AGretz.