The Islanders, sporting seven rookies on their 24-man roster,
scored seven third-period goals to beat the floundering Vancouver
Canucks 7-4 at Rogers Arena. The seven-goal period tied the
franchise record set Dec. 23, 1978, against the New York Rangers.
"You never know what's going to happen in this game," Islanders
coach Jack Capuano said.
With the Canucks leading 3-0 to begin the third period, the
Islanders (25-33-9) scored three power-play goals in the opening
3:36 off the sticks of left winger Josh Bailey, center Ryan Strome
and defenseman Calvin de Haan. Strome's and de Haan's goals came 22
New York center Frans Nielsen made it 4-3 at 6:22, one second after
the Isles' fourth power play of the young period expired.
Canucks defenseman Chris Tanev made it 4-4, but 10 seconds later,
left winger Matt Martin put the Islanders ahead to stay at 10:04.
"I don't think so," Bailey said when asked if he'd ever been on a
team that scored so many goals in one period. "Seven is pretty
crazy. It's nice for us to be on the winning side of one of those."
Islanders center Anders Lee, who has five goals and two assists in
seven games since he was called up from the minors, made it 6-4 at
11:45. Right winger Cal Clutterbuck added an empty-netter.
"Things are going well, I'm getting bounces," Lee said. "Two points
tonight, I'm in the right place at the right time, fortunately.
"That third period was back and forth, it seemed like everything was
going in. We know, having recently been on the receiving end of
something similar, how it could happen."
Making the Islanders' overwhelming comeback even more impressive:
The team was without three offensive weapons it had just a month
ago. Sniper and pending unrestricted free agent Thomas Vanek was
dealt away at last week's trade deadline; leading scorer John
Tavares suffered a season-ending injury at the Sochi Olympics; and
speedy right winger Michael Grabner left the game in the second
period after being elbowed in the head by Tanev.
The Canucks collected two power-play goals while jumping ahead 3-0.
Left winger Chris Higgins scored in the first, while centers Henrik
Sedin and Ryan Kesler added goals in the second. Sedin's came at
For Sedin, the Canucks captain and a former NHL scoring champion, it
was his first goal in 24 games and his first point in 13.
Then a parade to the penalty box began at the end of the second
period for Vancouver, and it continued into the third.
Rookie left winger Nicklas Jensen, playing in his second NHL game
this season and the fourth of his career, was in the box for
slashing when Bailey put the Islanders on the scoreboard at 1:13 of
[to top of second column]
Jensen was back in the penalty box 18 seconds later for a holding
penalty 200 feet from the Canucks net.
"That's just a young kid trying," Canucks coach John Tortorella
Defenseman Kevin Bieksa joined Jensen for pushing the net off the
moorings, and Strome and de Haan scored on the subsequent
five-on-three and five-on-four.
Vancouver left winger Tom Sestito had just stepped back onto the ice
after serving a minor penalty for boarding when Nielsen made it 4-3
Isles at 6:22.
"We got some bounces, but for us I hope it gives our young guys some
confidence," Capuano said. "I'm just so proud of our will, effort,
desire, composure and execution."
The Canucks (29-28-10) tied a franchise worst with the seven goals
against in one period. Wayne Gretzky's Oilers also managed the feat
in 1985 and 1987.
It will take more than a coach's pep talk for the Vancouver players
to move beyond Monday's total collapse.
"This is a kick in the teeth," said Tortorella, whose club would
need a miraculous run the final 15 games to squeak into the
postseason. "We need to be men and find our way."
NOTES: Entering the game, the Canucks had four players who make a
combined $22.45 million this season, who had not scored for a
combined 105 games: LW Daniel Sedin ($6.1 million, injured, but no
goals in his last 22 games), C Henrik Sedin ($6.1 million, 23
games), Alex Burrows ($6 million, 34 games) and David Booth ($4.25
million, 26 games). Henrik Sedin ended his drought. ... Isles LW
Matt Martin had six hits Monday. Martin, who led the NHL in hits the
past two seasons, is on top again with 292. Two seasons ago, he set
a record (since hits became an official statistic in 2005-06) with
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