It took three tries, but the New York Islanders ultimately eliminated the Philadelphia Flyers to advance to the Eastern Conference Final. The Flyers won in overtime and double overtime in Games 5 and 6 respectively, but the final contest in the series wasn’t close.
Scott Mayfield gave the Islanders a 1-0 lead at 9:27 of the first period to give them a lead they never conceded. The Islanders earned a 4-0 victory with goaltender Thomas Greiss recording the shutout. He only needed to make 16 saves in order to earn the perfect game. The Flyers only fired six shots in the first and three shots in the second. The Islanders entered the third period with a 3-0 lead and yet they still evened the Flyers in shots 7-7 over the final 20 minutes.
With that win, the Islanders have advanced to the Eastern Conference Final for the first time since 1993. Islanders head coach Barry Trotz deserves a fair amount of the credit. The Islanders have really turned around over the last two years under his leadership. This is also the sixth straight campaign where a team coached by Trotz has won at least one playoff series and it’s the second time in the last three years that his team has made it to the Conference Final.
As for the Philadelphia Flyers, their season might be over, but this was an encouraging campaign for them. Carter Hart is turning into a great goaltender and the team in front of him is solid. This season is something that the Flyers can build on.
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NY ISLANDERS 4 PHILADELPHIA 0 (Islanders win series 4-3)
Thomas Greiss stopped all 16 Flyers shots he faced. He has a 2-1 record, 1.08 GAA, and .960 save percentage in three contests.
James van Riemsdyk tied the team-high with three shots on Greiss. van Riemsdyk scored two goals on 23 shots in the 2020 playoffs.
Carter Hart saved 22 of 25 Islanders shots. He finished the 2020 playoffs with a 9-5 record, 2.23 GAA, and .926 save percentage in 14 starts.
Brock Nelson scored a goal and registered two assists for the Islanders. He’s up to seven goals and 15 points in 16 postseason games.
Scott Mayfield netted the game-winning goal. It was his first marker and fifth point in 16 playoff contests.