Kessel leads Maple Leafs over Islanders

Uniondale, NY ( – Phil Kessel scored twice during a four-
goal outburst in the second period that propelled the Toronto Maple Leafs to a
5-2 win over the New York Islanders on Tuesday night.

James van Riemsdyk, Roman Polak and David Clarkson also scored and Kessel had
an assist for the Maple Leafs, who were coming off back-to-back losses to
Detroit in a home-and-home set last week.

Jonathan Bernier had 34 saves, including 24 over the last two periods after
giving up two goals in the first.

John Tavares and Nick Leddy scored for the Islanders, who have lost two in a
row since tying a franchise record by starting the season 4-0. It was their
first loss in three home games this season.

Jaroslav Halak gave up five goals in 23 shots and was replaced in the third
period by Chad Johnson, who made five saves.

Kessel’s first goal, on a snap shot from the right circle, tied the score 9:04
into the second period. Polak gave the Maple Leafs the lead just 2:07 later
and Clarkson followed at 16:21 with a solo effort on the left side, where he
controlled the puck near the boards and moved in toward the slot for his shot.

It took only 92 more seconds for Kessel to make it 5-2 with his fourth goal of
the season, which he scored on a pass from van Riemsdyk over the defense and
into the right circle.

Leddy’s left-circle wrist shot gave the Islanders a 1-0 lead 2:48 into the
game, but the puck took a weird bounce on defenseman Thomas Hickey in the
right corner and kicked to van Riemsdyk, who tied the score at 8:44 for the
Maple Leafs.

The Islanders re-took the lead with 4:58 remaining in the period on Tavares’
power-play goal, which snapped Toronto’s streak of 16 consecutive successful
penalty kills.

Game Notes

It was the first time this season the Maple Leafs played a team that didn’t
make the playoffs last season … Barring a postseason meeting, Toronto will
play for the last time at Nassau Coliseum on Feb. 12. The Islanders are
leaving their longtime home to begin playing at Barclays Center in Brooklyn
next season … The Maple Leafs finish a three-game road trip on Wednesday in
Ottawa … The Islanders play in Boston on Thursday.