NHL Game Summary - NY Islanders at Montreal
(Saturday, February 2nd)
Final Score: Montreal 4, NY Islanders 1
Montreal, QC (Sports Network) - Alex Kovalev and Mark Streit each had a goal and an assist as the Montreal Canadiens defeated the New York Islanders, 4-1, at Bell Centre.
Tomas Plekanec and Mathieu Dandenault also tallied, while Andrei Markov added a pair of assists for Montreal, which has won four of its last five contests.
Cristobal Huet stopped 29-of-30 shots for the Canadiens.
Blake Comeau accounted for the lone Islanders goal. New York has lost four straight and seven of its last nine.
Rick DiPietro made 28 saves for the Islanders.
With Montreal holding a 3-1 lead after two periods, the home team continued to put the offensive pressure on New York, but DiPietro made several key saves to keep his squad within two.
"We had some chances, but we didn't bear down in front to get the rebound chances," DiPietro. "But it's something we have to work on."
The Canadiens tightened things up on the defensive end, limiting the Islanders scoring chances in the third period and Dandenault's goal from in close with 2:39 remaining accounted for the 4-1 final.
After a scoreless first period, Montreal got on the board 37 seconds into the second while skating shorthanded. Plekanec took a drop pass from Kovalev, made a shift move to his left and beat DiPietro to give the Canadiens the advantage.
Comeau tied the contest about four and a half minutes later when he got a backhander by Huet from a bad angle.
Montreal responded with a power-play tally 7:32 into the frame. With Radek Martinek in the box serving a hooking penalty, Streit lit the lamp to put the Habs ahead 2-1. Chris Higgins kept the puck in at the right point and got it to Saku Koivu in the low right circle, who found Streit at the top of the left circle for the goal.
Kovalev's wrist shot from the middle of the right circle got through the pads of DiPietro to give the Canadiens a two-goal cushion with 7:25 left in the second.
"We are playing with a lot of confidence now," Kovalev said. "But we have to be sure we don't get over confident."
Both teams had their chances in the remainder of the stanza, but were unable to score and Montreal held a 3-1 lead heading into the second intermission.
The Canadiens will host the New York Rangers on Sunday afternoon, while the Islanders will host Anaheim on Tuesday night...Montreal finish 1-for-5 on the power play, while the Islanders were 0-for-5 with the man advantage...The Canadiens improved to 3-0 against the Islanders this season and have won four straight and six of the last eight versus New York...Attendance was 21,273.
02/02 18:54:06 ET