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Islanders score 4 unanswered goals to rally past Bruins
Boston, MA (SportsNetwork.com) - John Tavares netted a pair of third-period goals and picked up two assists as the New York Islanders rallied from a two- goal deficit to beat Boston, 5-3, at TD Garden.
Frans Nielsen tallied twice and Kyle Okposo added a goal and two helpers for the Islanders, who have won two in a row for the first time since Nov. 1-2.
"We found a way to win tonight and the power play came up huge," Okposo said. "We made good plays, got back to out-manning guys, moved [the puck] around and didn't force anything. When they were tired, we capitalized."
Thomas Vanek and Andrew McDonald each contributed two assists to back a 35-save effort by Evgeni Nabokov.
David Krejci, Patrice Bergeron and Daniel Paille provided offense for the Bruins, who hadn't dropped two straight in regulation since Oct. 26-30.
Tuukka Rask was on the hook for all five goals on 31 shots.
Nielsen began the comeback and pulled the visitors back within a goal, as he flipped a puck that deflected off Zdeno Chara's skate in the slot off the left post and in with 3 1/2 minutes to play in the second period.
New York tied it on a late advantage created when Rask flipped the puck out of the rink. A centering feed to the right of the Boston net from Okposo caromed off Brad Marchand's skate and in with less than three seconds left.
Tavares knocked a puck out of mid-air from along the goal line to the right of Rask to give the Islanders a 4-3 edge at the 32-second mark of the third.
It was 5-3 for the visitors with 6:43 remaining, when Tavares ripped one home from the left circle in the early part of a power play.
Rask was sharp to stop a short-handed breakaway by Michael Grabner as the clock ticked down to four minutes remaining and the visitors kept their composure in the final minute to come away victorious.
"I think when we took the 3-1 lead, we kind of relaxed and they came back hard and they kind of got the momentum back and we couldn't regain it," said Bruins head coach Claude Julien.
Krejci opened the scoring 4:25 after the opening faceoff by batting home the rebound of Jarome Iginla's initial chance.
Nielsen evened the score, beating Rask through a Vanek screen at 5:56 of the second while Bruins defenseman Matt Bartkowski sat for a holding minor.
Boston then went up by two thanks to scores only 25 seconds apart later in the period.
Bergeron beat Nabokov from the high slot on the advantage at 12:33, then Chara's floater from the left point sailed under the crossbar at 12:58.
The Bruins had their eight-game win streak at home snapped, which began with a 3-2 overtime decision against Carolina on Nov. 23 ... Boston forward Milan Lucic exited the contest after being given minors for boarding an unsportsmanlike conduct, along with a misconduct at the 16:03 mark of the third period ... The Bruins begin 2014 by hosting Nashville on Thursday, while the Islanders entertain the Blackhawks two days from now.
01/01 02:03:06 ET
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