Ron Hainsey scored at 2:52 of overtime to lead the Carolina Hurricanes to a 5-4 road win over the New York Islanders at Barclays Center. The goal was Hainsey’s second of the game and his fourth of the season. Elias Lindholm and Jordan Staal each had two assists for the Hurricanes while Cam Ward made 33 saves to earn the victory.
Josh Bailey and Anders Lee each had a goal and an assist for the Islanders, who have allowed 10 goals in their last two games. The Isles earned just one point out of four this weekend against teams with which they are battling for the final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference.
Despite the fact that both teams played the night before, the game was fast-paced and full of action after a slow start.
The Hurricanes took the lead 4-3 with just 1.1 seconds left in the second period on Teuvo Teravainen’s goal off a scramble in front.
The Islanders made a push in the third period and outshot the visitors 11-2. They managed to tie the game at 8:33 on Bailey’s power-play goal but could not beat Ward for the go-ahead score.
The winning goal in overtime came when Islanders center John Tavares broke his stick off a faceoff, giving the Hurricanes a big advantage.
“Losing is never good, we’re disappointed in that. But the way we’ve been losing the last couple of games, it’s not because we weren’t doing a lot of good things,” Tavares said. “We’ve just given up a few more point blank opportunities than we have the last couple of games.
The game got off to a slow start and lacked pace, with neither team creating many scoring chances in the first five minutes.
The Hurricanes drew first blood midway through the period when Jaccob Slavin blasted a slap shot past J.F. Berube from the top of the circle at 9:53. The Islanders’ goalie appeared to take a poor angle on the shot.
The Isles needed only 71 seconds to respond. Anders Lee got in front of the ‘Canes’ crease and deflected Dennis Seidenberg’s shot from the point past Cam Ward to even the score at 1-1.
The Islanders gained momentum after tying the game and controlled the tempo in the later stages of the period. The home team outshot the road club 14-10 in the first 20 minutes.
The game picked up pace quickly at the start of the second period. The Islanders grabbed a 2-1 lead at 2:26 when Casey Cizikas deflected home a shot by Ryan Strome. Shane Prince made the play possible by forcing a turnover in the neutral zone.
The Hurricanes scored just 31 seconds later to tie the game at 2-2. Ron Hainsey beat Berube on a shot from between the circles. The Islanders’ defense left him all alone in the deep slot and the veteran defenseman cashed in on the opportunity.
Lee Stempniak converted on an odd-man rush at 4:37 to put the Hurricanes ahead 3-2. Berube went down early on the play and Stempniak lifted the puck right over his shoulder and under the crossbar for the goal.
Both teams settled down after the three-goal outburst and the tempo slowed down. The Hurricanes had the better of play for most of early part of the period but the Islanders regrouped and they dominated the last several minutes of the middle stanza.
The Islanders finally tied the game with exactly 1:00 left in the period on a goal by Brock Nelson. Nelson ripped a wrist shot from just past the top of the circle to score his 11th goal of the season.
It seemed as though the teams would be tied after 40 minutes, but Berube gave up a juicy rebound and lost sight of the puck in the closing seconds of the period. Teravainen poked home the loose puck with 1.1 seconds left and the Hurricanes had a 4-3 lead heading into the second intermission.
The Islanders trailed by a goal so they came out skating in the third period. They finally broke through to tie the game on a power-play goal by Josh Bailey at 8:33. John Tavares won the faceoff and Lee found Bailey between the circles for a blast that Ward couldn’t stop.
The Islanders controlled play for most of the third period, outshooting the Hurricanes 11-2. The teams headed to overtime all even at 4-4.
The Isles started the extra session on the power play as Sebastian Aho’s delay of game penalty late in the third period carried over into overtime. The Hurricanes’ penalty kill came up big and limited the home team to just one shot on goal with the extra attacker.
The game ended on Hainsey’s second tally, which was set up when Tavares’ stick broke, giving the Hurricanes a big advantage. Hainsey’s shot eluded Berube and the road team had captured a big two points in the playoff race.
CAR – Jaccob Slavin (2) assisted by Brett Pesce and Elias Lindholm
NYI – Anders Lee (18) assisted by Dennis Seidenberg and Josh Bailey
NYI – Casey Cizikas (5) assisted by Ryan Strome and Shane Prince
CAR – Ron Hainsey (3) assisted by Elias Lindholm and Jordan Staal
CAR – Lee Stempniak (10) assisted by Jeff Skinner
NYI – Brock Nelson (11) assisted by Ryan Strome and Adam Pelech
CAR – Teuvo Teravainen (11) assisted by Brock McGinn
NYI – Josh Bailey (10) (PPG) assisted by Anders Lee and John Tavares
CAR – Ron Hainsey (4) assisted by Justin Faulk and Jordan Staal
THW Three Stars
First: Ron Hainsey (GWG, 2 goals)
Second: Josh Bailey (goal, assist)
Third: Elias Lindholm (2 assists)
Toronto Maple Leafs vs. New York Islanders
Barclays Center – 7:00 PM EST Monday, Feb. 6
Broadcast Channels: MSG-Plus 2 and SN
2016-17 Season Series: Oct. 30: Islanders 5, Maple Leafs 1
Carolina Hurricanes vs. Washington Capitals
Verizon Center – 7:00 PM EST Tuesday, Feb. 7
Broadcast Channels: Fox Sports-Carolina and CSN-DC
2016-17 Season Series: Nov. 12, 2016: Hurricanes 5, Capitals 1; Dec. 16, 2016: Capitals 4, Hurricanes 3 (OT); Jan. 23, 2017: Capitals 6, Hurricanes 1