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Islanders will turn to Sorokin for Game 3

Michael Mooney / National Hockey League / Getty

The Islanders will turn to goalie Ilya Sorokin for Thursday's Game 3 against the Carolina Hurricanes with New York down 2-0 in the series, head coach Patrick Roy announced Wednesday, per the New York Post's Ethan Sears.

Semyon Varlamov has started the first two games of the opening-round clash and has surrendered six goals on 63 shots, good for a .905 save percentage. The Hurricanes beat him twice in a span of nine seconds to seal the comeback victory in Game 2.

The 35-year-old has saved 2.2 goals above expected at all strengths in the series so far, per Natural Stat Trick.

"We knew we would have to use both goalies," Roy said, per's Shawn P. Roarke. "They are both sharp and (Varlamov) faced a lot of shots in the last game, so it would be good to have someone fresh (Thursday)."

Sorokin posted a .909 save percentage and a 25-19-12 record during the regular season - a bit of a down year by his standards. He's appeared on the Vezina Trophy ballot in each of the past two campaigns and was the runner-up last season.

The Islanders leaned on Varlamov down the stretch as they forced their way into the playoff picture. He posted a sterling 8-1-1 record, .930 save percentage, and 2.09 goals against average in his last 10 games of the regular season. He had won his last five starts heading into the postseason.

Sorokin owns a career .925 save percentage, 2.70 goals against average, and 6-5 record across two playoff runs in 2021 and 2023.

The Hurricanes, meanwhile, are expected to be without defenseman Brett Pesce for the remainder of the series.

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