New York Islanders advance past Florida Panthers with Game 4 win

Florida Panthers and the New York Islanders (Photo by Andre Ringuette/Freestyle Photo/Getty Images)
Florida Panthers and the New York Islanders (Photo by Andre Ringuette/Freestyle Photo/Getty Images) /
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With an impressive 5-1 win over the Florida Panthers, the New York Islanders have advanced to the Stanley Cup Playoffs.

For the second straight season, the New York Islanders are heading to the Stanley Cup Playoffs. They’re doing so after winning their play-in round against the Florida Panthers 3 games to 1 after a dominant 5-1 win in Game 4.

Anthony Beauvillier got the game started for the Islanders with two goals in the first 16 minutes to give them a quick 2-0 lead. Josh Bailey and Brock Nelson got the assists on the first one while Mathew Barzal and Ryan Pulock picked up the assists on the other.

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However, the Panthers weren’t quite ready to wave their white flag yet, as soon to be free agent Mike Hoffman scored a power play goal for the Panthers late in the first period. His third goal of the series was assisted by Jonathan Huberdeau and Aleksander Barkov. With a strong postseason performance, Hoffman has set himself up well for his next contract.

In the second period, the Panthers got some chances early, but Brock Nelson’s power play goal eight minutes in gave the Islanders their two-goal lead back and it also seemed to take the wind out of the Panthers’ sails.

The Panthers got chances, as they had five power plays. However, the Islanders stood tall, only allowing Hoffman’s first-period tally. In the third period, Mathew Barzal added a goal and Jean-Gabriel Pageau added an empty-net goal to solidify the win.

Goaltender Semyon Varlamov was strong in net for the Islanders, stopping all but one of the 25 shots on goal he saw. For the series, he allowed just seven goals on 103 shots on goal.

WHAT’S NEXT?

The Islanders advance to the round of 16, where they await the results of the rest of the play-in round series and the round-robin tournament. They’ve earned a day off after their strong series against the Panthers.

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Meanwhile, the Panthers have to hang the heads low as they head on home without a postseason series win. It’s been 24 years since they’ve gotten out of the first round of the playoffs. Big changes could be happening down there.

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