Pittsburgh’s Chris Kunitz (14) celebrates his overtime goal with teammates Kris Letang (58) and Evgeni Malkin (71) while New York Islanders’ Andrew MacDonald, right, reacts Sunday in Uniondale, N.Y.
UNIONDALE, N.Y. — Chris Kunitz scored his second power-play goal of the game 8:34 into overtime, off a pass from Sidney Crosby, and the Pittsburgh Penguins shook off an early deficit and a late blown lead to beat the New York Islanders 5-4 on Sunday in Game 3 of the first-round series.
The Eastern Conference’s top-seeded team rode severe ups and downs in taking a 2-1 lead in the best-of-seven matchup.
Pittsburgh trailed 2-0 just 5:41 in but rallied to lead 3-2 before the first period was over. The comeback started with power-play goals just 19 seconds apart by Jarome Iginla and Kunitz.
The Penguins seemed in control in the third period, but New York erased a 4-2 deficit on goals by Kyle Okposo and John Tavares.
Pittsburgh will try to take a commanding 3-1 series lead Tuesday night on Long Island.
Crosby, who had three assists in his second game back after missing a month because of a broken jaw, drew the decisive penalty against Brian Strait, who held the Penguins captain as he drove the net 33 seconds before the winning goal.
Penguins coach Dan Bylsma used his timeout to rest his power-play unit, and it paid off. Crosby fed Kunitz in the slot for a hard shot that beat goalie Evgeni Nabokov to win it.
WILD 3, HAWKS 2, OT
ST. PAUL, Minn. — Jason Zucker scored at 2:15 of overtime to give Minnesota a victory over Chicago, pulling the Wild within 2-1 in the Western Conference quarterfinal series.
Zach Parise scored for the Wild early in the third period, but Duncan Keith got one back for the Blackhawks with 2:46 left in regulation to force the second overtime in three games of this best-of-seven series. Game 4 is here on Tuesday night.
Keith’s snap shot glanced off Wild defenseman Marco Scandella and past goalie Josh Harding to make the score 2-2.
But after Matt Cullen ferociously chased the puck along the end boards in the opening action of overtime, Zucker swooped in to surprise Johnny Oduya as the Blackhawks defenseman was about to fight for possession with Cullen.
Zucker’s bad-angle shot slipped past goalie Corey Crawford.MORE IN Sports WireSome things to watch in the Big Ten on Saturday:
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