Sports | August 12, 2020 10:23 am

First Day of NHL Playoffs Ends With Five-Overtime Thriller

The Lightning outlasted the Blue Jackets to take 1-0 lead in their first-round series

First Day of NHL Playoffs Ends With Five-Overtime Thriller
Ondrej Palat celebrates the game winning goal by Brayden Point. (Elsa/Getty)
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The first day of the NHL playoffs ran so long into the night that one of Tuesday’s games had to be moved to Wednesday morning.

After the Vegas Golden Knights knocked off the Chicago Blackhawks 4-1 and the Calgary Flames beat the Dallas Stars 3-2, the Tampa Bay Lightning and the Columbus Blue Jackets played to a 2-2 tie in regulation in the third game of the day.

After no one scored in the first overtime, the teams played a second. Then a third. Then a fourth. Finally, in the fifth overtime, Tampa Bay’s Brayden Point potted the game-winner past Columbus goalie Joonas Korpisalo to end the fourth-longest game in NHL history.

Though he gave up the game-winner to the 24-year-old forward, as well as another score to him in the first period, Korpisalo made an NHL-record 85 saves on the night. At the other end of the ice, Vezina Trophy finalist Andrei Vasilevskiy made 61 saves for Tampa Bay as both teams combined for 151 shots — the most in an NHL game since the league began tracking the stat in 1955-56.

Columbus defenseman Seth Jones logged an NHL-record 65 minutes, six seconds of ice time — five minutes and six seconds more than the length of a standard game — in the loss.

“It was an unreal performance by both teams, but especially by both goaltenders,” said Tampa Bay defenseman Victor Hedman. “They don’t get to sit on the bench for a couple minutes, they have to be sharp the entire time.”

Since they would not have been able to start until 90 minutes after the completion of the Columbus-Tampa Bay matchup, the Boston Bruins and Carolina Hurricanes found out somewhere around the fourth overtime that their game had been moved to Wednesday.

The two teams are set to hit the ice at 11 a.m. in a playoff rematch of a series the Bruins won last year.

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