NHL Game Summary - Boston at NY Islanders
(Tuesday, January 27th)
Final Score: Boston 2, NY Islanders 2
Uniondale, NY (Sports Network) - P.J. Axelsson scored with 1:57 left in the third period, lifting the Boston Bruins to a 2-2 tie with the New York Islanders in the opener of a home-and-home set at Nassau Coliseum.
Felix Potvin stopped 26 shots for Boston, which is winless in three straight (0-2-1) and will host the Islanders on Thursday. Glen Murray added the other goal for the Bruins, who welcomed Joe Thornton back to the lineup.
Thornton had missed the last three games because of a small fracture in his right cheekbone, which he suffered during a fight with the Rangers' Eric Lindros eight days ago. Thornton, who wore a cage to protect the injury, had an assist on Murray's goal.
Trent Hunter scored twice for the Islanders while Rick DiPietro stopped 35 shots. New York had its two-game winning streak snapped and is 4-1-2 in its last seven.
Down 2-1 late in the contest, Jiri Slegr slipped a pass in the slot to a wide open Axelsson, who beat DePietro to the glove side for the tying goal -- his fourth of the season.
"I got a beautiful pass from Slegr and I just had my stick there," Axelsson said. "It was a beautiful play."
Each team mustered just one shot in overtime.
Hunter got the Islanders on the board first just 5:56 into the game, scoring on a slap shot from the left face off circle. Hunter's blast just trickled by Potvin on the glove side to give New York the early 1-0 lead.
However, the Bruins knotted the contest on Murray's 15th tally of the season. Murray's long blast beat DiPietro stick-side at the 8:03 mark of the opening stanza.
Hunter's second tally of the game gave the Islanders a 2-1 edge late in the first. Shawn Bates snapped a backhander from the slot that was not cleanly stopped by Potvin. The loose puck went off the netminder's pad and a trailing Hunter pushed home the rebound, beating a sprawled Potvin with 2:39 left in the first.
Potvin turned aside the remaining 16 shots he faced over the final 45 minutes.
DiPietro, meanwhile, stopped all 14 shots sent his way in the second period and 12 of the 13 in the third.
"It was a hard-fought game," Boston coach Mike Sullivan said. "Both teams were on the body and finishing their checks."
Hunter leads all rookies with 18 goals this season. He scored two goals in a game for the fourth time this season...The teams have played to a pair of ties this season and Boston is unbeaten in its last four against the Islanders (1-0-3).
01/27 23:25:09 ET