The New York Islanders eight-game point streak came to an end on Tuesday night, as the Isles dropped a 3-1 decision to the Boston Bruins at TD Garden.
Jordan Eberle scored the lone goal for the Islanders, who suffered their first regulation defeat since Jan. 12, going 6-0-2 between losses. Patrice Bergeron (2G) and Peter Cehlarik scored for the Bruins, who extended their winning streak to six games against the Islanders.
Video: BOS 3 vs NYI 1: Anders Lee
DISALLOWED GOAL DOES ISLES IN:
Barry Trotz called hockey a game of inches on Saturday night and on Tuesday, it was an inch that helped do the Islanders in.
Tied 1-1, Cal Clutterbuck's would-be go-ahead goal was called back, overturned after the Bruins issued an offside challenge. Devon Toews, who began the three-on-two rush up the ice, was just a hair offside as Casey Cizikas carried the puck into the zone.
Trotz felt it was offside immediately, but what he didn't know was the implication just around the corner. Less than two minutes later, Cehlarik slipped a rebound past Robin Lehner (26 saves) to put the Bruins ahead 2-1 with the eventual winner.
"It's a game of inches. If you're one inch on the blue line there, that's probably defining," Trotz said. "We didn't take advantage of that extra inch. We got a goal called back and we turned the puck over and they got their second goal."
"The second goal was the turning point," he added. "Now we're chasing against a very good team that defends really well."
The Isles had their chance to tie the score with a four-minute power play late in the third period, but could not convert and Bergeron ultimately iced the game with an empty-netter.
"It's tough in a road setting. You could see their crowd really responded to that," captain Anders Lee said of the disallowed goal. "It's almost like a goal against. I thought we responded just fine, but we just weren't able to tie it up in the end."
Video: NYI@BOS: Eberle finds twine from sharp angle for PPG
DEFENSIVE DUEL BETWEEN ISLES AND BRUINS:
Much like November's 2-1 shootout loss, Tuesday's contest was a tight-checking, low-scoring affair, but that's probably to be expected with the league's top-two defensive teams meeting.
Goals were at a premium, especially with Lehner and Tuukka Rask (28 saves) on top of their game. The Isles weathered a first-period surge - where they killed three consecutive penalties against the league's third-ranked power play - but Boston eventually opened the scoring in the second period.
Bergeron, who was playing in his 1,000th NHL game, was the first to a loose puck after Lehner robbed David Pastrnak on a two-on-one rush with Brad Marchand at 2:42. Eberle put the Islanders on the board at 16:40, sneaking a sharp-angled shot through Rask on the power play.
Video: NYI@BOS: Lehner knocks puck over the net
Lehner, who is 12-2-1 in his last 15 games, came up just short on both Bruins goals, getting a piece of Cehlarik's winner as it slid under him and just over the goal line. From there, the Bruins didn't give much, save for the elongated power play.
"We knew coming in as the one and two best defensive teams in the league that it was going to be a defensive, shutdown, 2-1 hockey game," Eberle said. "That's a playoff game. We had our looks to come into that game."
The Islanders wrap up their two-game road trip on Thursday night in New Jersey. Puck drop is at 7 p.m.