Lightning Eliminate Islanders, Will Face Stars in Stanley Cup Finals

Tampa Bay Lightning goalie Andrei Vasilevskiy (88) makes a save on New York Islanders' Brock Nelson (29) during NHL Eastern Conference final playoff action in September 17, 2020. Photo by Canadian Press/Shutterstock (10780808ax) Anthony Cirelli scored in overtime and Tampa Bay beat the New York Islanders 2-1 in Game 6 of the East final Thursday night and go back to the Cup Final for the first time since 2015. Hkn Lightning Islanders, Edmonton, Canada - 17 Sep 2020

After a five-year hiatus, the Tampa Bay Lightning are headed to the Stanley Cup Final again.

Tampa Bay defeated the New York Islanders 2-1 in overtime on Thursday, winning the best-of-seven series 4-2.

The Lightning’s game-winner was netted by Anthony Cirelli 13 minutes into overtime.

Cirelli took advantage of a tired Islanders team, creeping behind them and putting himself in position to score. The pass came from Barclay Goodrow to Cirelli, who put the puck in the back of the net before anyone on the Islanders team, including goalie Semyon Varlomov, could adjust.

But the star of the game for the Lightning was goaltender Andrei Vasilevskiy, who put up 26 saves in the game, holding the Islanders to a single goal.

Next up in the playoff bubble in Edmonton are the Dallas Stars, who are back in the Stanley Cup Finals for the first time in 20 years. The Stars easily handled the Las Vegas Golden Knights, winning the series in just five games.

The last time the Lightning made it to the Stanley Cup Final they lost to the Chicago Blackhawks in 2015. Tampa Bay has one Stanley Cup title. They defeated the Calgary Flames in the 2004 final.