Islanders 5, Jets 4 (SO)

Travis Betts | Saturday, 04.20.2013 / 7:02 PM

John Tavares’ goal in the third round of the shootout extended the New York Islanders points streak to 10 games (8-0-2), and put the Islanders one step closer to the playoffs in a 5-4 victory over the Winnipeg Jets Saturday at MTS Centre. With the win, the Islanders improve to 24-16-5 (53 points), jumping Ottawa for sixth place in the Eastern Conference and equaling fifth-place Toronto in points.

The Islanders led three times during regulation, but the Jets, hanging on to playoff hopes of their own, tied the game late in regulation with the goalie pulled on a Bryan Little power play goal to force overtime and make Saturday’s contest a three-point game in the standings.

“It was a great game,” Islanders Head Coach Jack Capuano said. “Both teams really worked hard. We didn’t win the faceoff on that late penalty kill, but things happen. They got a puck to the net and got a good rebound to tie it. But our guys battled back hard today.”

Frans Nielsen opened the scoring four minutes into the first period with his sixth goal of the season. He took a feed from Kyle Okposo on the left side and beat Winnipeg goaltender Ondrej Pavelec at the 4:21 mark.

Midway through the opening frame, Winnipeg’s Zach Bogosian tied the score with a one-timer from the top of the right circle. Andrew Ladd and Blake Wheeler attacked the zone, and Wheeler fed the pass to a trailing Bogosian, who netted his fifth marker of the year.

But a minute-and-a-half later, Josh Bailey re-established the Islanders lead with his 10th goal of 2012-13. Bailey and Okposo cycled the puck in the Jets zone, and the left wing was able to step into his shot from the right circle to beat Pavelec.

Just before the halfway point in regulation, Matt Martin extended the Islanders lead on a one-timer. Jesse Joensuu took advantage of a stick-less Jets defenseman and threw it from the corner back to Martin in the left circle. Martin’s fourth tally of the season made it 3-1, 9:47 into the second period.

The two-goal cushion was short-lived, as Kyle Wellwood scored to make it 3-2 just 40 seconds later. Evander Kane’s shot from the left wing boards was saved, but Wellwood had an easy rebound and buried it into the Islanders goal. Wellwood broke behind the defense three minutes later after a high flip pass from Grant Clitsome. He deked to his forehand before beating Evgeni Nabokov top shelf at 13:24.

The game remained tied until nine minutes into the third, when Michael Grabner scored a go-ahead goal. Colin McDonald chased the puck down the right wing boards, absorbing two hits as he fed the puck to the front. Grabner was camped in the slot, and one-timed it in before Pavelec could get across.

But a late Winnipeg power play, coupled with an extra Jets attacker, led to the tying goal. Nabokov stopped the original shot from Grant Clitsome, and Andrew Ladd quickly fed the rebound across to Little on the left side, who pumped it into the open goal.

“We were playing a good team, we were playing a desperate team, and we were playing them at home,” Nabokov said of the back-and-forth play. “Sometimes the game is going to go that way. But we stuck with the game plan.”

The teams exchanged golden scoring chances during the extra period, with Clitsome ringing a shot off the post and Lubomir Visnovsky getting in the way of a rebound opportunity to save the game. A minute later, Pavelec stymied Nielsen to keep the game going. Tavares missed on an opportunity in the final 30 seconds, and the teams skated into the shootout.

Blake Wheeler and Mike Santorelli went first and second for the Jets in the shootout, with neither player finding the target. Brad Boyes scored in the bottom of the second round, putting the game on Ladd’s stick in the third round. He beat Nabokov with a forehand to keep the Jets hopes afloat, but Tavares ended things moments later. After making a pair of hard pump fakes, Tavares snapped a shot off the inside of Pavelec’s pads before it rolled in.

“There was a lot on the line tonight, and in the last week of the season especially, every win is big,” Tavares said. “With where both teams were sitting in the standings, we knew what the game was going to be like. We’re happy we were able to pull it out after squandering a couple leads.”

Nabokov finished with 24 saves, tying San Jose’s Antti Niemi for the league lead with his 23rd win of the season.

The result keeps the Jets one point behind the Rangers for eighth place in the standings. The Islanders have a four-point lead on Winnipeg, with three games remaining for each side.

If Winnipeg loses to Buffalo on Monday, the Islanders could clinch a postseason berth on Tuesday, when they head south to take on Carolina. The Islanders-Hurricanes matchup is set for 7:00 p.m.

Notes: The Islanders have won three straight and remain undefeated in regulation during the month of April (8-0-2) … Lubomir Visnovsky registered two helpers for his second-consecutive multi-assist game … The Islanders out-shot the Jets 33-28, marking the ninth straight game in which they finished with more shots than their opponent … The Islanders improve to 14-5-2 on the road this season; Only Pittsburgh (17) and Chicago (17), who sit atop their respective Conferences, have more wins away from home this season … The Islanders went 0-for-5 on the man advantage, while Winnipeg went 1-for-3 … Brian Strait returned to the lineup for the first time since Feb. 18, registering 15:56 of ice time, shot on goal and a plus-1 rating … Travis Hamonic led the team with 26:10 of ice time and five blocked shots, while adding five shots on goal … John Tavares led all players with six shots on goal … The Islanders won the faceoff battle 35-29, led by Tavares (16-of-22, 73%) and Kyle Okposo (8-of-10, 80%) ... The Islanders magic number for clinching a playoff spot is 3; of the teams not currently in the top-8, Winnipeg can achieve the highest point total (55).

New York Islanders


26 Matt Moulson - 91 John Tavares - 24 Brad Boyes

12 Josh Bailey - 51 Frans Nielsen - 21 Kyle Okposo

40 Michael Grabner - 10 Keith Aucoin - 13 Colin McDonald

6 Jesse Joensuu - 53 Casey Cizikas - 17 Matt Martin


47 Andrew MacDonald - 3 Travis Hamonic

14 Thomas Hickey - 11 Lubomir Visnovsky

2 Mark Streit - 37 Brian Strait


20 Evgeni Nabokov

60 Kevin Poulin

Winnipeg Jets


16 Andrew Ladd - 18 Bryan Little - 26 Blake Wheeler

9 Evander Kane - 12 Olli Jokinen - 13 Kyle Wellwood

27 Eric Tangradi - 8 Alex Burmistrov - 15 Mike Santorelli

17 James Wright - 21 Aaron Gagnon - 22 Chris Thorburn


24 Grant Clitsome - 33 Dustin Byfuglien

6 Ron Hainsey - 44 Zach Bogosian

5 Mark Stuart - 4 Paul Postma


31 Ondrej Pavalec

35 Al Montoya

Scoring Summary
1st Period
04:21NYI Frans Nielsen (6) ASST: Kyle Okposo (17), Josh Bailey (8) 1 - 0 NYI
10:42WPG Zach Bogosian (5) ASST: Blake Wheeler (22), Andrew Ladd (27) 1 - 1 Tie
12:14NYI Josh Bailey (10) ASST: Kyle Okposo (18), Frans Nielsen (22) 2 - 1 NYI
2nd Period
09:47NYI Matt Martin (4) ASST: Jesse Joensuu (2), Lubomir Visnovsky (10) 3 - 1 NYI
10:27WPG Kyle Wellwood (5) ASST: Evander Kane (16), James Wright (2) 3 - 2 NYI
13:24WPG Kyle Wellwood (6) ASST: Grant Clitsome (11) 3 - 3 Tie
3rd Period
09:13NYI Michael Grabner (16) ASST: Colin McDonald (10), Lubomir Visnovsky (11) 4 - 3 NYI
17:59WPG PPG - Bryan Little (7) ASST: Andrew Ladd (28), Grant Clitsome (12) 4 - 4 Tie
OT Period
1WPGBlake Wheeler - Missed
2NYIFrans Nielsen - Save
3WPGMike Santorelli - Missed
4NYIBrad Boyes - Goal
5WPGAndrew Ladd - Goal
6NYIJohn Tavares - Goal
Shootout Summary
RNDWinnipeg JetsNew York Islanders
1Blake WheelerFrans Nielsen
2Mike SantorelliBrad Boyes
3Andrew LaddJohn Tavares
Three Stars of the Game
Bryan Little
Bryan Little
G: 1Shots: 2
A: 0Hits: 1
PTS: 1PIM: 0
+/-: 1TOI: 25:37
Frans Nielsen
Frans Nielsen
G: 1Shots: 4
A: 1Hits: 0
PTS: 2PIM: 0
+/-: 0TOI: 18:51
Kyle Wellwood
Kyle Wellwood
G: 2Shots: 2
A: 0Hits: 0
PTS: 2PIM: 0
+/-: 0TOI: 14:06
Penalty Summary
1st Period
05:01WPG Grant Clitsome  Hooking against  Matt Moulson
15:19WPG Evander Kane  Delaying Game-Puck over glass
2nd Period
00:46WPG Dustin Byfuglien  Tripping against  John Tavares
15:40WPG Dustin Byfuglien  Slashing against  Kyle Okposo
18:04NYI Kyle Okposo  Roughing against  Zach Bogosian
18:04WPG Zach Bogosian  Roughing against  Kyle Okposo
18:04NYI Josh Bailey  Hooking against  Blake Wheeler
19:12NYI Matt Martin  Roughing against  Blake Wheeler
19:12WPG Blake Wheeler  Roughing against  Matt Martin
19:45NYI Michael Grabner  Concealing puck
3rd Period
17:52NYI Lubomir Visnovsky  Interference against  Eric Tangradi
OT Period
04:58WPG Dustin Byfuglien  Interference on goalkeeper against  Evgeni Nabokov
shots by period
Team Stats
Power Plays0/51/3
Faceoff Wins3529
Blocked Shots1625
Penalty Minutes1014
2M. StreitD0001020:24
3T. HamonicD0005026:10
6J. JoensuuL011109:41
10K. AucoinC0021011:06
11L. VisnovskyD0210222:53
12J. BaileyR1112218:22
13C. McDonaldR0110012:25
14T. HickeyD0001019:26
17M. MartinL1011210:30
21K. OkposoR0213217:44
24B. BoyesR00-20020:09
26M. MoulsonL00-22020:37
37B. StraitD0011015:56
40M. GrabnerR1013212:52
47A. MacDonaldD0000025:07
51F. NielsenC1104018:51
53C. CizikasC0012010:50
91J. TavaresC00-26023:20
20E. Nabokov2428.85764:30
4P. PostmaD00-10015:40
5M. StuartD00-10018:51
6R. HainseyD00-11027:37
8A. BurmistrovC00-32018:42
9E. KaneL01-12222:32
12O. JokinenC00-1000:48
13K. WellwoodC2002014:06
15M. SantorelliC00-22013:43
16A. LaddL0211026:47
17J. WrightC0121013:51
18B. LittleC1012025:37
21A. GagnonC000006:15
22C. ThorburnR000003:41
24G. ClitsomeD0224225:22
26B. WheelerR0114222:58
27E. TangradiL00-11012:39
33D. ByfuglienD00-23624:24
44Z. BogosianD1013218:32
31O. Pavelec2933.87964:53