Pastrnak lifts Bruins to 5-3 win over Islanders
NEW YORK (AP) — After a slow start, the Boston Bruins picked up their intensity in the second period and rolled over the New York Islanders.
David Pastrnak broke a tie late in the second period and Boston scored four consecutive to beat the Islanders 5-3 on Friday night to remain perfect on the road.
Brett Connolly, Joonas Kemppainen and Ryan Spooner scored to help the Bruins rally after trailing 2-1 through one period. Boston improved to 3-0 on the road this season to go along with an 0-3-1 mark at home.
Jonas Gustavsson, starting in place of the struggling Tuukka Rask, finished with 23 saves to improve to 2-0.
“When you’re down a goal early in the game, you just got to stick with it, believe in what you’re doing as an individual and as a team,” Gustavsson said. “We really came back strong in the second period and played really well, got the momentum back. The second and third periods these guys played unbelievable.”
David Krejci had an empty-netter with 2:25 remaining for his league-leading 12th point (five goals, seven assists), giving him a point in seven straight games.
Josh Bailey, Casey Cizikas and Thomas Hickey scored for the Islanders. They snapped a four-game winning streak and lost at home in regulation for the first time this season (3-1-1). Jaroslav Halak stopped 21 shots while taking his first loss after winning his first two starts.
“We didn’t do a good job of complementing each other,” Islanders coach Jack Capuano said. “You can’t turn the puck over in this league and expect to win. We have to play a lot better than that.”
Hickey scored on a slap shot with 1:53 left to cap the scoring.
The Bruins became more aggressive and took the lead with two goals late in the second period. Boston tied it when Kemppainen scored on the rebound of Spooner’s shot with 3:47 left for his first NHL goal.
Pastrnak gave the Bruins the lead just over 2 minutes later, firing the rebound of Adam McQuaid’s point shot past Halak.
In the third, Spooner skated across the crease and attempted to send a centering pass back to Kemppainen, but the puck deflected off Islanders defenseman Marek Zidlicky’s skate and in to extend the Bruins’ lead to 4-2 at 8:09.
After starting the season 0-3, Boston is now 3-0-1 in its last four games.
“We started slow,” Connolly said. “We took over the second half of the game. We have points in the last four games. We had a tough start to the season, we’re coming on here. We’re starting to play a little better, we’re starting to figure out each other’s tendencies.”
The Bruins came in with the league’s top power play at 8 for 21 and went 0 for 3. New York was 1 for 2.
Halak stopped Loui Eriksson’s wrister on a 2-on-1 break late in the first period, and the Islanders took the puck down the ice and tied the score at 1-1. John Tavares’ shot was blocked by Gustavsson, and Bailey sent the rebound from the left faceoff circle past the Bruins’ goalie on the power play with 5:52 remaining. The assist gave Tavares at least a point for the fifth straight game, with three goals and six assists during that stretch.
Less than 1:20 later, the Islanders took the lead on Cizikas’ first goal of the season. Johnny Boychuk sent the puck toward the net from the right side and Cizikas skated across in front of the goal with his back to the goalie and deflected the puck between his skates past Gustavsson.
After taking 18 shots in the first period, the Islanders were held to five in the second and three in the third.
“For some reason, we didn’t have a second or third gear tonight,” Tavares said. “They got some momentum going, and we weren’t able to match them. We have to be better.”
Connolly gave the Bruins a 1-0 lead just before the midpoint of the first period as he jumped on a loose puck in the right slot and snapped it past Halak.
Notes: Bruins D Zdeno Chara played in his 1,200th NHL game. The 6-foot-9 Chara was selected by the Islanders 56th overall in the 1996 NHL draft. He played four seasons with the Islanders before being traded to Ottawa on draft day in 2001 in a deal that brought C Alexei Yashin to New York. ... Boychuk, acquired from Boston on Oct. 4, 2014, played in his 400th career game. ... The Islanders agreed to a three-year entry-level contract with first-round draft pick Anthony Beauvillier. The 18-year-old forward was selected with their second pick of the opening round, No. 28 overall. ... Several New York Mets players — including Daniel Murphy, Jonathon Niese and Steven Matz — attended the game.