Penguins Islanders Hockey
(AP Photo/Julio Cortez)

The New York Islanders trailed for the first time in the playoffs but rallied with three unanswered goals to secure a 2-0 series lead.

Danny Small

The Pittsburgh Penguins are out of sorts right now. The New York Islanders are living underneath the Penguins’ skin. Look no further than the six power-play opportunities given to the Isles.

Of course, they could only convert on one of those opportunities, but the lone power play goal from Josh Bailey put a stamp on a statement victory in Game 2.

Prior to the Bailey goal, Jordan Eberle notched the game-winning goal on a pretty backhand. Mathew Barzal was all over the ice on Friday and he is making a massive impact in this series thus far.

New York Islanders

The Islanders are not messing around. Some thought the Penguins would come back and smoke the Isles in Game 2 and take the advantage as they head home.

For a moment, it looked as though Pittsburgh was on the way to doing just that. Erik Gudbransen opened the scoring with a goal that gave the Penguins their first lead of the series.

But the Isles responded in a major way. Just in the nick of time, Anthony Beauvillier buried a rebound off of a Barzal shot. After the play, Barzal got called for a penalty for engaging in some extracurricular activity after the goal.

There is no love lost between these two teams. The series has been physical from the first puck drop. Credit to the less experienced Islanders for hanging tough and pushing back.

The physical play seems to be throwing Pittsburgh off their game and their frustration boiled over after the final whistle. As the teams head to Pittsburgh for a pivotal Game 3, expect the Penguins to play like their lives are on the line.

If the Isles are going to win in Pittsburgh, they’ll need a strong performance from Robin Lehner. The Swedish netminder was magnificent on Friday, saving 32 of 33 shots.


But even if the Isles struggle in Pittsburgh, they held serve at home and hold the upper hand in the series. Now, the goal is to go to Pittsburgh and try to steal one of the next two games.

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