NEWARK, N.J. -- Brad Boyes jammed home a loose puck in the crease with 2:59 remaining in overtime to give the New York Islanders a 5-4 victory over the New Jersey Devils on Thursday at Prudential Center.
The goal, the second of the season for Boyes, was the third power-play goal of the game for the Islanders (4-2-1), who finished their five-game road trip with a 3-1-1 record. They have a two-day break before the Devils (3-0-3) come to the Nassau Coliseum on Sunday afternoon.
Adam Henrique, who was making his season debut after sitting out the opening five games following left thumb surgery, pulled the Devils into a 4-4 tie at 13:50 of the third off a backhand attempt from in tight on Evgeni Nabokov. David Clarkson earned the lone assist to extend his point-scoring streak to six games for New Jersey.
Islanders captain Mark Streit had given the visitors their third lead of the game 11:32 into the third when his shot from the point deflected off the stick of Devils defenseman Adam Larsson and past Martin Brodeur.
The Devils had two golden opportunities to take their first lead of the game prior to Streit's goal. The first came 5:01 into the period when Travis Zajac outmuscled defenseman Matt Carkner in the left circle before cutting into the slot. Nabokov stood his ground and turned away the attempt with his blocker.
The second good chance came midway through the third when Clarkson broke in with his team on the power play but had the puck knocked from his stick by a sliding Casey Cizikas.
The teams had five combined goals in the second, with the Devils holding the one-goal edge to pull into a 3-3 tie.
Tavares had given the Islanders a 3-2 lead with his second of the game off a splendid individual effort down his left wing 7:31 into the second. After gathering an outlet pass from Matt Moulson, Tavares broke in, muscled past Devils defenseman Bryce Salvador and powered a shot past a sprawling Brodeur.
That goal was matched a little over 10 minutes later when Devils defenseman Henrik Tallinder took a feed from Zajac at the point, skated into the left circle and ripped a shot that beat Nabokov to the long side for his first goal since April 6, 2011.
The Devils rallied from a 2-0 deficit when third-line grinders Steve Bernier and Ryan Carter each connected for their first of the season in a span of 3:08. Bernier pulled the Devils within 2-1 when he jammed home a rebound right in front of Nabokov. Stephen Gionta had put the puck off the right post before taking one swat at the rebound that slid in front to Bernier.
Carter then squared the game after taking a feed from Matt Anderson in the slot and knocking in his own rebound 6:21 into the second. The assist was the first NHL point for Anderson, the 30-year-old undrafted free-agent signee playing in his second career game.
The Islanders just missed at taking their third lead of the contest with 1:06 left in the second when Michael Grabner's shorthanded breakaway attempt rang off the right post.
The Islanders took a 2-0 lead 2:41 into the second on a power-play goal by Keith Aucoin off a rebound at the left post. Defenseman Travis Hamonic set up Aucoin's fourth of the season after needling a pass through from the right point.
The Islanders opened a 1-0 lead 14:31 into the first period on a power-play goal by Tavares. With Devils defenseman Andy Greene off for interference, the surging Islanders power play, which entered the game in a tie for fourth in the NHL, went to work. After collecting a pass from Frans Nielsen in the slot, Boyes faked a shot and dished to Tavares, who was standing uncontested low in the right inner circle. Tavares ripped a shot that soared over Brodeur's glove and into the cage.
The Islanders were fortunate to come away with a lead after 20 minutes; the Devils outshot the visitors, 10-7. Nabokov was the difference, however, as he denied the Devils on several quality chances. He made amends for a tripping call 5:47 into the game by stopping all three attempts the Devils had on net, including a quality chance from Gionta on the doorstep at the 7:31 mark.
Follow Mike Morreale on Twitter at: @mikemorrealeNHL
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