Defenseman Ryan Pulock scored at 1:13 of overtime and the New York Islanders edged the New York Rangers 3-2 Sunday night at Nassau Coliseum in Uniondale, N.Y.
The Islanders remained tied for first place in the East Division with the Washington Capitals, who secured a blowout win over the Boston Bruins.
The Islanders won it by making a strong defensive play in their offensive zone.
After the Rangers won a faceoff, Mathew Barzal pried the puck from Filip Chytil along the left-wing boards and whipped the puck through the slot to Pulock. Pulock slipped past Ryan Strome and from the right faceoff circle lifted a wrist shot over goaltender Igor Shesterkin’s stick.
It was Pulock’s first goal of the season and helped the Islanders improve to 18-2-2 at home two nights after absorbing a 4-1 loss to the Rangers.
Kyle Palmieri and Jean-Gabriel Pageau scored in the first period but the Islanders blew a 2-0 lead for the second time in three games.
Defensemen Libor Hajek and Brendan Smith scored 1:53 apart in the second for the Rangers, who pulled within four points of the Boston Bruins for the fourth and final playoff spot in the East Division.
Islanders rookie Ilya Sorokin made 24 saves. Less than a minute into overtime made a point-blank stop on a backhand attempt by Mika Zibanejad.
Shesterkin stopped 29 shots for the Rangers, who are 7-3-2 in their past 12 contests.
The Islanders scored early and late in a 17-shot opening period.
Palmieri netted his first goal since being acquired from the New Jersey Devils when he tapped a cross-ice pass into the vacated right side of the net 1:47 into the period during a power play.
The Islanders caught the Rangers on a slow line change in the waning seconds to take a 2-0 lead. Barzal carried the puck up the left wing and passed to Jordan Eberle, who whipped the puck across the slot to Pageau for a one-timer from the right circle with 7.6 seconds left.
Hajek halved the Rangers deficit on a long blast from the right point that deflected off Islanders’ defenseman Noah Dobson’s stick into the net with 9:37 remaining. The Rangers evened the game less than two minutes later when Smith lifted a wrister from the middle of the slot over Sorokin’s right arm.
–Field Level Media