The Tampa Bay Lightning is one game away from returning to the NHL’s Conference Finals.
The Lightning won its second consecutive overtime victory in Brooklyn, beating the New York Islanders 2-1 in overtime. The Bolts lead 3-1 and can close the series out on Sunday at Amalie Arena.
Once again, Tampa Bay started slowly, being outplayed in the first period and outshot. They fell behind 1-0 on a goal by Kyle Okposo. That lead held until the third period, when – who else? – Nikita Kucherov tied the game on a one-timer 7:49 into the third period.
It was Kucherov’s eighth goal of the playoffs, which leads the NHL.
“He’s proving he’s not a one-hit wonder,” Lightning coach Jon Cooper said. “He continues to amaze.”
Ben Bishop had his moments, too, stopping 27 of 28 shots.
The Lightning took the win on a deep shot by Jason Garrison only 1:34 into overtime.
“He’s got a bomb,” said Cooper.
Cooper was asked what his team needed to do in its next game. “We need to realize it starts at 7 instead of 8,” said Cooper, unaware the game actually starts at 3. Still, he has a point about the Bolts getting off to a slow start.