National Hockey League
- Wells Fargo Center PUCK DROP -
NY Islanders Islanders
ML: NYI -129
Final (SO)
Philadelphia Flyers
ML: PHI +117
Goalie Performance
Jaroslav Halak
#41 G Jaroslav Halak
Michal Neuvirth
#30 G Michal Neuvirth
0.935 SV% 43 SV
1.000 SV% 16 SV
Scoring Leaders
Frans Nielsen
#51 C Frans Nielsen Goals Assists 2 0
Nick Leddy
#2 D Nick Leddy Goals Assists 0 2
Brock Nelson
#29 LW Brock Nelson Goals Assists 1 0
Claude Giroux
#28 C Claude Giroux Goals Assists 1 1
Pierre-Edouard Bellemare
#78 LW Pierre-Edouard Bellemare Goals Assists 1 0
Ryan White
#25 C Ryan White Goals Assists 1 0

PHILADELPHIA -- For the New York Islanders on Tuesday night, it was all about survival.

And following right winger Kyle Okposo's nifty move and goalie Jaroslav Halak's final denial, that's just what they did in a 4-3 shootout win over the Philadelphia Flyers at Wells Fargo Center.

"Obviously it wasn't our best," Okposo said. "In the second period, they really took the game over."

The Islanders were outshot 46-26 but held on in the shootout when Okposo won it as the lone scorer in the skills competition. He did so in fancy fashion, dragging the puck back and patiently waiting for the goalie to fall before going top shelf.

Center Frans Nielsen scored a pair of goals in regulation and New York never trailed as the Islanders (16-8-5) won their sixth game in the last eight, a stretch in which they haven't lost in regulation (6-0-2).

"Two points in a game like this is really big for our hockey club," Okposo said. "Last year, we had some games like this where we did get two points and it really helped us in the standings, so we know how important each point is."

Meanwhile, the Flyers (11-11-6) are now losers of two straight at home following a four-game winning streak. This loss particularly stings given the performance.

"We played a good hockey game," Philadelphia coach Dave Hakstol said. "We deserved better tonight.

"I'm not critiquing anything. We played a (heck) of a game."

Flyers goalie Steve Mason was benched after allowing his third goal of the game early in the second. Philadelphia fed off backup Michal Neuvirth, scoring two unanswered to flip a 3-1 deficit into a 3-3 tie.

"I wanted to make a change for our team," Hakstol said of the decision. "The group responded in a good way."

Mason understood the move.

"Three goals on 10 shots isn't good," he said. "No way around it, I've got to be better."

Islanders goalie Jaroslav Halak denied all three shots in the shootout. In regulation and overtime, he faced 46 shots and stopped 43 of them.

"I told the guys after the second period, that was probably one of the worst periods we played," New York coach Jack Capuano said. "We've got a lot of character, a lot of leaders on this team, we just need to go out and play."

After outshooting the Islanders 17-5 in the second period, the Flyers carried it over into the third. At 17:58 of the final frame, center Claude Giroux erased the one-goal deficit with his 10th of the season as he deflected a slap shot off a pair of bodies and past Halak, ultimately forcing a scoreless overtime and quiet shootout.

"From start to finish, I thought we were the better team," Philadelphia right winger Wayne Simmonds said. "Sometimes that happens."

It took the Islanders only 55 seconds to draw first blood. Defenseman Johnny Boychuk ignited the scoring chance by threading the needle with a cross-ice pass to streaking left winger Anders Lee, who fed Nielsen for a snap shot and 1-0 New York lead.

As the Islanders went on a power play looking to cushion their advantage, a heady play by Flyers right winger Pierre-Edouard Bellemare drew Philadelphia even. Bellemare intercepted the puck near center ice and went the other way, executing a perfect 2-on-0 rush with Giroux, who stayed patient by keeping possession and making Halak commit before finding Bellemare for the easy goal.

New York capitalized on the same power play when center Brock Nelson's slap shot got past Mason to regain the Islanders' lead.

"Big goal by our power play," Halak said. "To give up a short-handed goal, and come back and get a big goal for us."

Just like the first period, New York raced out of the chute in the second, this time scoring 1:14 into the stanza. Nielsen potted his second goal of the game when he harmlessly snapped a shot on goal during a 1-on-2, but ended up deflecting it off Mason's glove and in.

The goal resulted in Mason being yanked for Neuvirth. It lit a spark, but New York did just enough to fend off Philadelphia's onslaught.

"Last time we played them, they had only 18 shots, so I'm sure the plan tonight was to shoot from everywhere," Halak said. "They were shooting from pretty much every angle.

"It's obviously a big two points for us, but we've got to play better."

NOTES: Islanders RW Cal Clutterbuck left in the second period with an upper-body injury and did not return. Coach Jack Capuano said he'll be reevaluated on Wednesday. ... D Andrew MacDonald, called up Monday from the Flyers' AHL affiliate in Lehigh Valley, made his season debut in place of D Luke Schenn, who is out two weeks with a lower-body injury. ... Islanders RW Steve Bernier and D Brian Strait were healthy scratches. Bernier has not played since Nov. 25, while Strait has been out the last six games. ... Flyers D Radko Gudas served the final game of his three-game suspension, while C Sam Gagner (upper body) and D Mark Streit (groin) remained out of the lineup. ... Islanders G Jaroslav Halak got the start in net. He entered 2-0-2 with a 1.75 goals-against average in his last four games. ... Flyers C Vincent Lecavalier was a healthy scratch for the 12th consecutive game. He has not played since Nov. 12.
Top Game Performances
NY Islanders   Philadelphia
Frans Nielsen 2 Points Claude Giroux 2
Frans Nielsen 2 Goals Claude Giroux 1
Nick Leddy 2 Assists Claude Giroux 1
Brock Nelson 1 Power Play Goals N/A
N/A Short Handed Goals Pierre-Edouard Bellemare 1
Jaroslav Halak .935 Save Percentage Michal Neuvirth 1.000
Jaroslav Halak 43 Saves Michal Neuvirth 16
Team Stats Summary
Team Shots Goals Power Play Penalty Kill Penalty Mins Face Offs Won
NY Islanders 26 4 1-1 2-2 6 32
Philadelphia 46 3 0-2 0-1 4 32
Upcoming Games
  • Philadelphia will play their next game on the road against St. Louis. The Flyers have a W/L % of .455 after a win and .353 after a loss.
  • NY Islanders will play their next game on the road against Columbus. The Islanders have a W/L % of .533 after a win and .571 after a loss.