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Islanders-Lightning Playoff News: The Pulock save heard ‘round the...parts that care about exciting hockey

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The series shifts to best-of-three after Ryan Pulock seals Game 4 win.

Tampa Bay Lightning v New York Islanders - Game Four
Big big hugs of gratitude
Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

Happy Fathers Day to those who know or celebrate. A nice way to mark it: the Islanders win at Nassau Coliseum last night means they’re just two away from the Stanley Cup final.

If Saturday’s Game 4 had any other scenario than a 3-0 lead taken into the third period, the nail-biting finish that was saved by Ryan Pulock would’ve felt normal and glorious. But the fact it came under those conditions placed an added horror-flick terror to the proceedings before the crowd could exhale, and rejoice.

That Pulock moment was one of those “Holy shit” moments that captivates diehard fans and casual playoff observers alike, so it dominated much of the post-game coverage. (Although you still have your usual types even within this sport who are really, really invested in trumpeting their ignorance of the Islanders while asserting Barry Trotz is ruining the sport, etc. I gloss over them but it’s remarkable how often they pop up with their hot-takery, even after another exciting semifinal game.)

Islanders-Lightning Playoff News

  • Game recaps: [LHH | NHL | Newsday | Post | AP | NY Sports Day | Raw Charge | CP] In photos (Newday)
  • Andrew Gross’ quick post-game pod: [Island Ice]
  • On the Pulock save, another “regroup” timeout after the Lightning clawed back, and the long-awaited Palmieri line tweak. [Staple @ Athletic]
  • The Lightning blame themselves, Jon Cooper calls the loss “self-inflicted.” [Smith @ Athletic]

Pulock punditry:

In the comments to our recap last night, North Dakota Red Eagle shared some moment-by-moment screen caps of just how frightening and glorious that Pulock save was, on an elevated shot.

  • Ryan Pulock was “just trying to make [him]self big” on the goal-line save. [NHL]
  • Barzal “I think everyone’s breath got taken away.” [Isles]
  • If the Isles win the series, Pulock’s save would be an all-time Islanders playoff moment. [Post]

More on Game 4:

  • “It’s the playoffs, nothing should surprise anybody.” [Isles]
  • The ever-dangerous Brayden Point continues to cause the Isles problems. [Post]
  • The three-goal second period continues a trend of success in the middle frame. [Post]
  • Matt Martin had to miss an Esiason wedding, but scoring the winner was a nice consolation. [Post | Newsday]
  • A win reflective of the team’s identity and mantra. [Isles Blog]

And looking ahead to the next one: Brendan Burke gets the call for NBC Sports. [Newsday]

The Pulock Save, as It Happened

Elsewhere

The other semifinal continues tonight, presenting the Canadiens with the chance to take a commanding lead over the Golden Knights.

  • The Coyotes are working on Oliver Ekman-Larsson trade options. Again. [Sportsnet]
  • Wonder rookie Kirill Kaprazov doesn’t have a lot of leverage within the NHL (no arbitration or offer sheet rights), but he does have the ever-present threat of just returning to the KHL. [Athletic]