Kenny Jonsson had a goal and assist, and the Islanders scored three power-play goals in Saturday night's 4-2 victory over the Sabres.
"The special teams were a factor," Buffalo coach Lindy Ruff said. "Theirs was better than ours."
Rick DiPietro made 27 saves, and Cliff Ronning, Dave Scatchard and Janne Niinimaa also scored for New York. Oleg Kvasha and Arron Asham each had a pair of assists for the Islanders, who have won nine of 11 at home.
Chris Taylor and James Patrick had Buffalo's goals, and Mika Noronen stopped 19 shots as the Sabres started a five-game road trip.
The Islanders scored on both ends of an early two-man advantage to grab a 2-0 lead.
Ronning, signed last week, scored his first goal with the Islanders at 3:45 when his 40-foot slap shot from the right side beat Noronen high over his glove.
On the second half of Alexei Zhitnik's high-sticking double minor, Jonsson fired a one-timer from the right point that found the same spot at 5:27.
"That dug us a hole right off the bat," Ruff said of the two power-play goals. "Our skills guys -- I didn't like our emotion or work ethic on our power play. You have to tell me where Miroslav Satan was tonight. You have to tell me where Curtis Brown was tonight. Five-on-five, we were pretty decent. We still have a lot of work to do, and that's what ticks me off."
Jonsson said his shot didn't go where he was aiming.
"Mine was a little higher than I wanted it to go," Jonsson said. "But I'll still take it."
Buffalo answered at 12:29, as Taylor, posted in the low slot, tipped Zhitnik's left point shot past DiPietro. It was just Buffalo's third shot of the game.
New York restored its two-goal lead when Scatchard put in a wrist shot from the left boards at 3:28 of the second period.
The Islanders had a short-handed goal by Shawn Bates disallowed at 5:56 due to a quick whistle, but Niinimaa scored a power-play goal that counted at 9:31. He sneaked in from the blue line and wristed a shot high.
DiPietro made his biggest save at 12:20 when he made a backhand catch of a shot from Jochen Hecht at the left crease while falling the opposite way.
"The guys did a good job of getting me into the game," DiPietro said. "I got to see some long shots to start things off, and that helped me get into things."
The Sabres had a goal disallowed at 14:18 when Zhitnik was called for interfering with DiPietro.
Patrick scored from the right point at 15:01 of the final period to close the scoring. It was big for the Islanders, who blew a 4-0 lead in Ottawa on Thursday night -- allowing three goals in the third period -- and had to settle for a tie
"I didn't bring it up," Islanders coach Steve Stirling said of his between-periods talk. "I thought about it, but I didn't think we needed any negativity."