New York Islanders Highlights: Minnesota Wild Pick Up Hard Fought Overtime Win


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New York Islanders Highlights: Minnesota Wild Rally Late For Overtime Victory

The New York Islanders have been scuffling of late, as their victory Saturday against the New Jersey Devils snapped a four-game losing streak. They were looking to carry the positive momentum through Tuesday, but were unable to as they ran into the buzzsaw that is the Minnesota Wild, losing in overtime.

The Wild are one of the hottest teams in the NHL, as the win tonight was their 10th straight on the road and third straight overall. It wasn’t for a lack of effort from the Islanders though, as they were actually the better team on the ice for most of the night. Unfortunately for them, the Wild had Devan Dubnyk between the pipes for them.

The Islanders peppered Dubnyk right from the get go, attempting 16 shots compared to five for the Wild. He would stop everything that came his way until very late in the second period, when John Tavares jammed home a goal in front with only 24 seconds remaining in the period. This was Tavares first point in five games, as he is still tied for second in the NHL in points, one behind Alexander Ovechkin.

The goal was assisted on by Kyle Okposo and Andres Lee. The assist was the 300th in the career of Okposo, and first since he made his return from injury. He now has points in consecutive games for the first time since mid-January.

That was the only thing that would get past Dubnyk on the evening though, as he stopped every other shot attempted on him, including every Islanders attempt in the shootout. He stonewalled Tavares, Okposo and Frans Nielsen in the shootout.

For as well as Dubnyk played, Jaroslav Halak was right there with him throughout the night. Halak had his second consecutive strong outing, as he shutout the Devils over the weekend and tonight allowed only one goal in regulation on 32 shots. The only goal he allowed was to Zach Parise with 8:15 left in the game, his 29th of the season. It was assisted by Jason Pominville and Mikko Koivu.

Halak had a couple of highlight plays on the night, one of which even appeared in SportsCenter’s Top 10 plays of the night as he did everything to get the Islanders a victory tonight. But Parise was able to beat him again in the shootout, as Halak initially made the save but the puck slide behind him hitting the post and being knocked in.

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It is a disappointing loss with how the Islanders played, as they were the stronger team on the ice. In addition to the shot differential, the Islanders also had more hits and dominated in faceoffs, winning 36 of the 57 faceoffs on the evening. But it was not a total loss on the night, as the Islanders at least pulled one more point closer to the Metropolitan Division-leading New York Rangers, who fell at home to the Los Angeles Kings.

The Islanders record at home now stands at 23-12-1, but things will not be getting much easier on their four-game homestand. Next up is a visit from the same Kings team that defeated the Rangers tonight that is desperate for victories as the defending Stanley Cup champions are currently on the outside looking in of the playoffs.

Next: Who was the best Islander in the year 2014?

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