Phillippe Myers scored 2:40 into overtime to give the Philadelphia Flyers a 4-3 victory over the New York Islanders on Wednesday in Toronto, tying the second-round playoff series at a game apiece.
The Islanders overcame a 3-0, first-period deficit, with Jean-Gabriel Pageau getting the tying goal with 2:09 left in regulation.
Myers ended it quickly, connecting on a shot from the right point that glanced off the stick of the Islanders’ Anders Lee on the way in.
Kevin Hayes scored twice in the first period for Philadelphia, Sean Couturier also had a goal, and Carter Hart made 31 saves.
Lee and Anthony Beauvillier also scored for the Islanders. Semyon Varlamov had seven saves before he was benched late in the first period. Thomas Greiss finished with 20 stops the rest of the way.
Coyotes lose picks
The NHL stripped the Arizona Coyotes of their 2020 second-round pick and 2021 first-round pick for violating the scouting combine policy by conducting physical tests of draft-eligible players.
Commissioner Gary Bettman determined the organization broke the rules by physically testing prospects outside of the combine, which is prohibited “to ensure competitive fairness among clubs with respect to evaluating and drafting prospects and to avoid subjecting prospects to repeated and duplicative testing procedures.”
Bettman decided to use his powers to take away draft picks rather than impose a fine of $250,000 or more “given the specific circumstances of this case.” The NHL Constitution gives him the ability to deprive a team of draft picks if conduct is found to affect the competitive aspects of the game.
The league opted not to discipline any individual members of the organization involved in the situation because Bettman believes it was gross negligence rather than intentional wrongdoing.
Losing these picks further handcuffs whoever takes over as Arizona’s general manager. The Coyotes already didn’t have a first-round pick this year after trading it to New Jersey for winger Taylor Hall, a pending free agent. They gave up their third-rounder 14 months ago to acquire forward Carl Soderberg.
Assistant Steve Sullivan was elevated to the role in the interim after the team said GM John Chayka “quit” just prior to the playoffs. Chayka was GM when the NHL launched its investigation in January.
“We were advised today of the NHL’s ruling regarding the allegations of physical fitness testing of draft prospects and respect the league’s ruling,” the Coyotes said in a statement. “Under new leadership, we have added thorough internal controls and compliance measures to prevent this type of occurrence from happening again in the future.”
Surgery for Tarasenko
Blues winger Vladimir Tarasenko is in jeopardy of missing the start of next season because he is facing shoulder surgery for the third time in less than three years.
GM Doug Armstrong said the 28-year-old Russian is scheduled to have another operation on his left shoulder and won’t be reevaluated until five months after surgery. Tarasenko missed the vast majority of this season after having the dislocated shoulder operated on in October, and his absence after aggravating the injury contributed to the defending Stanley Cup champions being knocked out in the first round of the playoffs.
There are still questions about when the 2020-21 season will begin, though the league has tentatively scheduled training camps to open Nov. 17 with opening night Dec. 1. Even if that gets pushed back, Tarasenko could miss a significant chunk of games.
“It’s a concern in the sense that he’s had three surgeries or is going to have three surgeries,” Armstrong said. “We’re hoping that he gets back to the level that he was at before.”
Tarasenko previously had his left shoulder operated on in April 2018 . There’s now concern about whether the five-time 30-goal scorer will ever be the same.
Armstrong also revealed Wednesday that roughly 20 percent of the Blues’ regular players contracted COVID-19. He believes that contributed to their losing seven of nine games when hockey returned.
“It affected each of the players differently,” Armstrong said. “Some lost a considerable amount of weight. They all felt some form of a symptom. It wasn’t that they had it and they didn’t feel anything.”
Canucks tie series
Bo Horvat scored twice, and Tyler Toffoli and Elias Pettersson each had a goal and two assists to lead the Canucks to a 5-2 win over the Golden Knights on Tuesday night, evening their Western Conference semifinal series at one game apiece … Defenseman Mike Green, who played for the Capitals, Red Wings, and Oilers over 15 NHL seasons, announced his retirement.