Uniondale, NY (SportsNetwork.com) – John Tavares notched a power-play goal
with 24 seconds remaining in overtime as the New York Islanders stayed hot
thanks to a 3-2 decision over Washington at Nassau Coliseum.
Anders Lee and Travis Hamonic supplied additional offense, with Ryan Strome
adding two assists for the Islanders, who have taken five in a row and nine of
their last 10 to challenge Pittsburgh for the Metropolitan Division lead.
Jaroslav Halak came up with 25 saves for the win.
Alex Ovechkin picked up both scores for the Capitals, who can avenge the loss
in the latter portion of this home-and-home series on Friday.
Braden Holtby played well in defeat, making 32 stops.
Caps forward Nicklas Backstrom was sent off for holding the stick with 2:22 to
play in the extra session.
As time wound down in the advantage, Strome circled on the left wing from the
goal line back into the circle and dished across to the New York captain.
Tavares waited until a Capitals defender slid, then moved towards the
hashmarks before scoring on a forehander.
Lee opened the scoring with 5:11 elapsed, then Ovechkin’s trademark slapper
evened the score on a power play at 13:46. New York went ahead 2-1 on a
Hamonic wrister with 2:22 left before intermission.
Another power-play marker from Ovechkin knotted the game with 1:13 to play in
the middle frame.
Halak, who was untested in overtime, made eight saves in a scoreless third
period. Holtby, on the other hand, was peppered with 12 shots in the game’s
final 24-plus minutes and stopped all but the final puck.
This was the first meeting between the clubs after Washington won three of the
four matchups a season ago … The Islanders posted their first home win
against the Capitals since March 9, 2013 … Ovechkin participated in his
700th NHL game … Backstrom assisted on both Washington markers … The
Capitals have lost four of their last six outings.