In the final game before the All Star Break, the New York Islanders defeated the Montreal Canadians 3-1.
The Isles came into the game having dropped their last seven games against Montreal.
Andrew Ladd snapped a wrister passed Cary Price at the 13:07 mark of the first period to get the Isles on the board. Ladd had much more energy on Thursday, in only his second game back from injury.
The opening frame was arguably the Islanders best 1st period this season. The Isles outshot Montreal 14-4 in the 1st, but Ladd’s 9th of the season was the only tally.
The 2nd period was all about Carey Price. The Islanders continued to pour the pressure on and could have taken a large lead into the final period if not for the former Vezina winner.
The fortunes turned when the Canadians capitalized on a Dennis Seidenberg penalty. Shea Weber blasted a slap shot from the point, which bounced off Greiss and rolled in, to even things up at one a piece.
The Islanders had been playing so well up to that point and did a good job of not letting the Canadians take the momentum back after that goal.
Weber has scored a power play goal in both games against the Islanders this season, his only two career goals against the Isles.
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Cal Clutterbuck left with an undisclosed injury after the goal and would not return for the remainder of the game.
The Isles top line had 12 of the team’s 30 shots going into the 3rd period. Even with Lee missing the last two games, him, Tavares, and Bailey didn’t miss a beat.
That first line drew a penalty to begin the period. New York failed to capitalize for the third time tonight, even though Josh Bailey continued to shine. Throughout the night Price robbed Bailey time after time.
Bailey is quietly having the best season of his career and night in and out he has been making quite the effort to play more aggressive.
The Isles finally broke through with 12:40 remaining in the period. With the teams playing four on four hockey, John Tavares made a great feed to Ladd who buried his second goal of the night and 10th of the season.
Thomas Greiss would then face his toughest test of the night. A furious push by the Canadians led to three great saves by the NHL’s second star of the week to keep the Isles in front.
Although Greiss only allowed one goal, this finally felt like a game where he didn’t have to do all the work.
Bailey’s great play finally paid off on the Islanders 4th power play of the night. Bailey slapped one passed the glove side of Price to give the Islanders a 3-1 lead.
A huge win for the Islanders who head into the All Star break 5-0-1 in their last six games.