Islanders Squeak by Devils in Shootout

NEWARK, N.J. — Josh Bailey scored in the fourth round of the shootout, Thomas Greiss made 30 saves and the New York Islanders beat the New Jersey Devils 2-1 on Thursday night to sweep the four-game season series.

Mathew Barzal scored in regulation to help New York win for the seventh time in 10 games (7-1-2).

Kevin Rooney scored for New Jersey, and Cory Schneider was outstanding in his first game in almost two months, making 27 saves.

In the overtime, Schneider made a good glove save on Bailey with 3:17 to go, and New Jersey’s Jesper Bratt hit a post about 30 seconds later.

Both goaltenders made big saves in the closing minutes to force the overtime. Greiss stopped Drew Stafford on a shot from between the circles late in a power play, and Schneider made two key stops late, including a last-second one on a bad-angle shot by Barzal.

Thomas Greiss
Thomas Greiss (Amy Irvin / The Hockey Writers)

Schneider was making his first start since being put on injured reserve on Dec. 17 with an abdominal strain. He was looking for his first win since December 2017.

Rooney opened the scoring 5:32 after the opening faceoff with his second NHL goal. He took a pass from Kurtis Gabriel on a quick counter attack and beat Greiss with a shot from the left circle.

Barzal tied it on a breakaway seconds after serving a coincidental penalty that had the teams playing 4-on-4. He took a stretch pass from defenceman Ryan Pulock and beat Schneider with a backhander into the roof of the net for his 16th goal.

NOTES: Devils D Ben Lovejoy returned after missing six games with an upper-body injury. … The game was the Devils’ first since trading popular C Brian Boyle to Nashville, a sign of deals to come. … NHL MVP Taylor Hall missed his 18th straight game for New Jersey because of a lower-body injury. .. There was roughly a two-minute delay late in the second period when Greiss’ mask was damaged by Kyle Palmieri’s power-play shot.


Islanders: Host Colorado on Saturday.

Devils: Host Minnesota on Saturday.


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Tom Canavan, The Associated Press