But not all of these ultimate showdowns are equally memorable. And probably not as important despite the same reward for winning and the same consequence for losing. A first round loss of Game 7 in a year with low expectations doesn’t equate to losing the ultimate showdown as a championship favorite.
For example, losing to Washington in the first round of 2015 while amassing all 11 shots is not the same as losing to Toronto in the 1978 quarterfinal on Lanny McDonald’s semi-breakaway in overtime a few weeks after the Islanders won their first division championship and expected to go to the final.
Friday night’s seventh game against Tampa Bay was for the right to advance to the Stanley Cup Final. So this one will be remembered as important. The degree of memorization will depend on how the game unfolds.
Ranking the five most memorable 7 Games in Islander history:
5. On May 13, 1975, lost Game 7 of the semi-finals, 4-1 to the Flyers at the Spectrum
After becoming the second team in NHL history to overcome a 3-0 best-of-seven deficit by winning Pittsburgh in Game 7 of their quarter-final series, the Islanders were, incredibly, on the point of reoffending.
Because after the Flyers, defending champions, took a 3-0 lead, the Islanders retaliated by winning the next three to set up a winning showdown at the Spectrum.
The Flyers had stumbled upon a so-called lucky charm in Kate Smith, whose interpretation of “God Bless America” was played before the club’s most important games. For this match, Smith appeared live, accompanied by an organ on the ice.
While reveling in the standing ovation she received from the crowd, Smith was greeted, first by Islanders captain Eddie Westfall, who presented her with flowers, and then by the entire team. For a few moments, it looked like the Islanders had stolen the thunder from the Flyers.
But just 19 seconds into the game Gary Dornhoefer missed one by Chico Resch and the Flyers rolled from there to prevent the Islanders from making history twice in a matter of weeks.
4. On April 29, 1978, lost Game 7 of the quarterfinals, 2-1 to the Maple Leafs in overtime at the Coliseum
It was the series in which the Islanders, who had entered as big favorites and won the first two games, were intimidated by Toronto as conceived by head coach Roger Neilson and ultimately lost McDonald’s score to 4: 13 of the extension.
3. On May 14, 1993, won Game 7 of the Patrick Division Final, beating the Penguins 2-1 in overtime
It was as shocking a series result as it gets. The two-time defending champions Penguins ended the season with an 18-game unbeaten streak (17-0-1), tying the final game of the year after setting an NHL record with a 17-game streak. consecutive wins. The record they broke belonged to the Islanders, who had won 15 in a row in 1981-82.
In addition, the Islanders were deprived of their best player, Pierre Turgeon, who suffered a shoulder injury in the game-winning goal of Game 6 on a check from behind by his stalker, Dale Hunter. But that didn’t deter the Islanders, who were left alive with a 7-5 win in Game 6 at the Coliseum.
The Islanders had a 3-1 lead midway through the game’s third period, in which Kevin Stevens suffered a serious facial injury early in the first period. But Ron Francis scored at 4:13 PM before Rick Tocchet tied it at 7:00 PM. The Penguins seemed ready.
Until David Volek converted a two-on-one feed from Ray Ferraro to beat Tom Barrasso from the right point at 5:16 overtime to knock out the champions and send his team to the conference final, which they lost in five games in Montreal.
2. April 18-19, 1987, won Game 7 of the opening round, beating the Capitals 3-2 in Landover, Maryland, when Pat LaFontaine beat Bob Mason 45 feet at 8:47 of fourth overtime
This is obviously the Islanders’ most historic Game 7, as it is the longest Game 7 in NHL playoff history.
In the game known as the Easter Epic because it ended at 1:58 a.m. at Easter, Kelly Hrudey made 73 saves while Mason made 54. The Islanders overcame a 3-hour deficit. -1 in the series to win. The Islanders rallied in the next round 3-1 to force a Game 7 against the Flyers, but were routed 5-1.
1.26 April 1975, won Game 7 of the quarterfinals against the Penguins in Pittsburgh, 1-0
He is the one who established the legend and put the islanders on the national map. Westfall scored at 14:32 of the third period against Gary Inness, while Resch kissed the goal posts while recording the shutout as the Islanders recreated the history the Leafs had recorded 33 years earlier.