Washington's T.J. Oshie completed his hat trick in overtime to give the Capitals a 4-3 win against Pittsburgh on Thursday in a classic start to their NHL second-round playoff series.
John Tavares tied the game in the final minute of regulation then scored the winner in the second period of overtime to lead the New York Islanders past the Florida Panthers 2-1 Sunday night and into the second round of the playoffs for the first time since 1993.
The end of two springs' worth of playoff angst for the Pittsburgh Penguins came suddenly, crammed into 14 minutes of pure exhilaration, one highlight-reel sequence piled atop another.
Alan Quine's power-play goal at exactly 16 minutes of the second overtime gave the New York Islanders a 2-1 victory over the Florida Panthers early Saturday in Game 5 of the Eastern Conference quarterfinal series.
Tampa Bay became the first team to book its place in the last eight of the NHL Stanley Cup playoffs after beating Detroit 1-0 on Thursday to seal a 4-1 series victory.
The Pittsburgh Penguins got back to playing the style that made them one of the NHL's best teams after Christmas.
New York's Thomas Hickey scored 12:31 into overtime to give the Islanders a 4-3 victory over Florida on Sunday, taking a 2-1 lead in their NHL first-round playoff series.
Washington's Braden Holtby made 41 saves while his opposing goaltender Philadelphia's Steve Mason gave up a goal from 101 feet away as the Capitals beat the Flyers 4-1 on Saturday to take a 2-0 lead in their NHL first-round playoff series.
Tampa Bay improved to 2-0 in its NHL Eastern Conference playoff series against Detroit by beating the Red Wings 5-2 on Friday, spurred by a couple of third-period goals from Tyler Johnson.
Washington frustrated Philadelphia by killing all of their power plays, and beat the Flyers 2-0 on Thursday in the opening game of their NHL Eastern Conference first-round playoff series.