By Jason Lockhart and Kimber Auerbach
The Islanders traveled up to Connecticut Saturday night to play in their AHL affiliate's Bridgeport Arena at Harbor Yard and didn't disappoint.
Mike Dunham blanked the Devils for 40 minutes, one day after signing with the Islanders, stopping all 19 shots he faced in two periods as the Islanders won 3-0. Rick DiPietro turned aside all ten New Jersey shots in the first period. Two goals early in the first period by Alexei Yashin and Miroslav Satan were all the Islanders needed as they finish the preseason 3-2-0.
"Alexei's our leader, but no one does it by himself," said Ted Nolan. "You win with not just talent, but good people."
The Islanders got on the board first, 2:32 into the game on the power play. Tom Poti fed Yashin, who fired a low shot that was tipped in front off of a Devil passed Martin Brodeur for an early 1-0 Islanders lead. It was Yashin's second goal in two nights.
It was Yashin again, just 2:26 later who got things going again for the Islanders. Yashin picked up a loose puck at center and skated into the Devils' zone on a 3-on-2. His initial shot was blocked aside by Brodeur, but Satan banged home the rebound for his second of the preseason and a 2-0 Islanders lead.
There was no score in the second period as Dunham replaced DiPietro and stopped all nine Devils shots in the frame. Dunham withstood a barrage of shots with Alexei Zhitnik and Mike Sillinger serving minors during New Jersey's first 5-on-3 which lasted 1:40.
"Dunham's a good man and a good goaltender," said Nolan. "He proved that tonight."
Early in the third, Dunham shut down another 5-on-3 power play for 37 seconds to keep the Islanders up by two. With two minutes remaining in the third, Sound Tigers graduate, Trent Hunter, fired a short-handed goal past Brodeur to seal the victory for the Islanders, 3-0.
Slapshots: Three Stars of the Game: 1. Alexei Yashin 2. Mike Dunham 3. Trent Hunter Tom Poti and Chris Simon wore the "As" Joel Bouchard (hamstring), Sean Hill (finger), Mike York (bronchitis), Peter Ferraro (healthy), Brendan Witt (healthy) and Brandon Cullen (healthy) were scratches The Islanders have not surrendered a power play goal in three consecutive games
1 G Mike Dunham
39 G Rick DiPietro
3 Tom Poti - 8 Bruno Gervais
77 Alexei Zhitnik 2 Rick Berry
14 Chris Campoli 24 Radek Martinek
25 Viktor Kozlov - 79 Alexei Yashin 18 Mike Sillinger
7 Trent Hunter - 17 Shawn Bates - 81 Miroslav Satan
15 Jeff Tambellini 11 Andy Hilbert - 55 Jason Blake
12 Chris Simon - 10 Richard Park 45 Arron Asham
New Jersey's Lineup
30 Martin Brodeur
40 Scott Clemmensen
28 Brian Rafalski - 5 Colin White
44 Andy Greene - 38 Johnny Oduya
21 Brad Lukowich - 41 Olli Malmivaara
26 Patrik Elias - 23 Scott Gomez 15 Jamie Langenbrunner
20 Jay Pandolfo 11 John Madden 49 David Clarkson
9 Zach Parise 57 Travis Zajac 18 Sergei Brylin
25 Cam Janssen 10 Erik Rasmussen 22 Dan LaCouture
Photo Rich Stieglitz