Monday was a good day of rest for the weary.
By the looks of things, both the Panthers and New York Islanders needed it.
After playing three hard-fought games in a span of four nights, both teams took Monday off with Game 4 in the best-of-7 series coming Wednesday at Barclays Center in Brooklyn.
The Panthers, which now trail 2-1 after losing 4-3 in overtime on Sunday, could use the time off.
"I need the rest, three games in four nights with an overtime so I'm pretty exhausted right now," said goalie Roberto Luongo, who has faced 107 shots since Thursday.
"I need a couple days to re-energize here and get ready for Wednesday."
The Panthers have survived the first three games without injury and have played well enough to win all three games.
Coach Gerard Gallant said although Sunday's loss was disappointing, it wasn't deflating, adding his team is going "to be confident."
The Panthers have held leads in all three games and the opportunity is still there for Florida to return home for Game 5 with the series even.
"It's really disappointing and the bus ride back was pretty quiet," Gallant said. "The first 15 minutes of our team meal was pretty quiet. But then all of a sudden they start watching basketball and hockey on the TV and they start loosening up. They're hockey players and they understand what it's all about. They move on. I don't have to worry about them getting back up. They know they're playing good hockey."
The Panthers have shown the ability to bounce back from defeat and they'll need it Wednesday. A loss in Game 4 and the Panthers are in big trouble.
"We have to have a short memory," said Reilly Smith, who came into Monday leading all playoff scorers with four goals and eight points.
"It's a long series. If we take the next one, we're all square going home."
Said Gallant: "We've done it all year long, it's nothing we haven't done before. I know it's the playoffs, but I thought we've played real well in three games. It could easily be the other way. Very easy. ... It's 2-1 for the Islanders, but it's no big deal right now. We didn't win [Sunday] but we're moving on. The teams are close. A break here or there and it could be 2-1 us. We'll see what happens Wednesday."
▪ Gallant said both Steven Kampfer (ankle) and Vincent Trocheck (foot) continue to improve as they skated Monday afternoon at the Devils' practice facility in Newark, New Jersey.
Kampfer is probably closest to returning and could be back on Wednesday although Trocheck isn't too far off.
Gallant said he knows he has a tough decision to make when Trocheck comes back and hopes he has to make it soon.
When Trocheck was centering Florida's second line with Reilly Smith and Jussi Jokinen, the trio combined for 17 goals and 41 points in March before Trocheck fractured a bone in his foot on March 29.
In three playoff games, Smith, Jokinen and Nick Bjugstad have combined for seven goals and 15 points.
"I hope I have the problem real soon,'' Gallant said about returning Trocheck to his spot and sliding Bjugstad back down to the third line with Jiri Hudler and Teddy Purcell.
"We'll decide when Trocheck is ready to go. That line has been outstanding for us in the playoffs with Bjugstad in there. When the time is ready, we'll make some adjustments.''
▪ Although the Panthers were victims of the NHL's video review of offside on Sunday erasing Aaron Ekblad's second period goal which would have given them a 3-0 lead, Gallant said he likes the process and supports keeping it around.
"I think they're good, think they've worked most of the time,'' said Gallant, who has been very successful when challenging similar plays during the regular season.
Video showed Jonathan Huberdeau didn't have control of the puck when he charged into the Islanders' zone although that had little to do with the goal as Florida worked the puck around before Ekblad scored. Some national writers have called for the NHL to scrap the controversial practice.
"It changed the momentum and it's too bad it didn't count,'' Huberdeau said. "It's tough, it would have been 3-0 instead of 2-0. ... But I thought they would have called [offside] on the play, I thought it was offside when it happened. They said no. It was one play in the game. That's not why we lost."
▪ Because of the importance of having the option to review a play, Gallant said he never thought of burning his one time out during the second period when the Islanders were charging hard and scored twice to tie the score at 3.
"I didn't even consider it at that time," Gallant said. "The timeout is too important now. You really need it."
▪ Jaromir Jagr's postseason goal drought is now at 34 games as he hasn't scored a playoff goal since 2012. It's not for trying, however. In the first three games of this series, Jagr has nine shots on goal and 16 attempts.
"He's had some good looks, has had some chances," Gallant said. "He just has to put it in the back of the net."
▪ The Panthers paired up two of their youngest defensemen during Sunday's game as Ekblad (19) and Mike Matheson (22) played together.
Matheson played in just three regular season games but picked up his first point in his second postseason game on Sunday.
"We wanted to make some changes, perhaps based on what the Islanders were doing,'' Gallant said. "I think Matheson is playing real well. We switched the pairings up, made an adjustment.''