UNIONDALE, N.Y. — Brayden Point scored for the sixth straight game, and the Tampa Bay Lightning defeated the New York Islanders 2-1 in Game 3 of the Stanley Cup Semifinals at Nassau Coliseum on Thursday.
Point’s shot while falling down in the right circle found its way through traffic and gave Tampa Bay a 2-1 lead with 18 seconds left in the second period. It was his NHL-leading 11th goal of the Stanley Cup Playoffs and eighth in nine games.
Andrei Vasilevskiy made 27 saves for the Lightning, who lead in the best-of-7 series.
Cal Clutterbuck scored for the Islanders, who have lost Game 3 at home in each of the first three rounds of the playoffs. Semyon Varlamov made 23 saves.
Teams that take a 2-1 lead are 89-25 (.781) winning a best-of-7 NHL semifinal series. Game 4 will be played here Saturday (8 p.m. ET; USA, CBC, SN, TVAS).
Kyle Palmieri had a chance to give New York an early lead, but Vasilevskiy got his glove on his shot from point-blank range at 6:53 of the first.
Yanni Gourde then gave Tampa Bay a 1-0 lead at 10:05, quickly shooting the puck in from a sharp angle after Blake Coleman‘s centering attempt from below the goal line redirected to him off the skate of Nick Leddy.
Clutterbuck tied it 1-1 at 17:01 of the second period when he jammed Matt Martin‘s rebound over the goal line after Lightning defenseman Erik Cernak tried to stuff the puck under Vasilevskiy’s glove.
Vasilevskiy denied Leo Komarov on a rebound off the end boards with 5:49 remaining to preserve the 2-1 lead.