Ryan Pulock's second goal of the day was an OT winner, as the New York Islanders beat the Colorado Avalanche 4-3 at Barclays Center.
Pulock hammered a feed from Casey Cizikas past Semyon Varlamov at 2:23 of the extra frame, powering the Islanders to their second straight win. Jordan Eberle and Josh Bailey also scored for the Islanders, who erased a 2-0 deficit in a comeback effort.
"We kind of dug ourselves a hole to start, but we stuck with it and we found a way," Pulock said. "We didn't go into a shell, we kept playing and we found a way to get it done."
With the win, the Islanders improve to 32-16-6, becoming the first team in the Metropolitan Division - and second in the Eastern Conferecnce - to reach 70 points.
Video: COL@NYI: Pulock pots second for OT winner
NEVER SAY DIE-LANDERS:
There's no quit in the New York Islanders and Saturday's win was the latest comeback effort for the resilient bunch, who have won a franchise-record five-straight games when trailing by two goals.
No play epitomized the never-say-die mentality more than Matt Martin's diving save on Nathan MacKinnon in the third period. Down 2-1, Robin Lehner misplayed the puck to Mikko Rantanen, who dished over to MacKinnon for what looked like a sure goal, with only Nick Leddy guarding the yawning cage.
Instead, Martin hustled back and hit the deck, knocking the puck away from the Avs second-leading scorer. The Islanders could have been down 3-1, but instead Bailey tied the score 2-2 a minute-and-a-half later.
"The TSN turning point was the save that Marty made," Head Coach Barry Trotz said. "The reason it didn't end up in the back of our net is because of urgency and work ethic coming back. It doesn't happen if Marty goes 'oh, no' and sort of takes his time getting back. He's coming back hard because he know something bad might happen if we don't make a play. That's just effort. Marty was outstanding tonight."
Video: COL@NYI: Martin lays out to deny MacKinnon
After a slow start, the Islanders momentum snowballed on Saturday. After letting Colorado jump out to a 2-0 lead - Carl Soderberg scored in the first period and Erik Johnson made it 2-0 in the second - the Islanders clawed their way back into the game.
Eberle sparked the Islanders with a late second period goal, tapping in a loose rebound after an Anders Lee shot, and the Isles wound up outshooting the Avalanche 13-6 in the final frame.
Tied 2-2, the Islanders took their first lead with 6:03 to play, as Pulock hammered home his first of the night on a 4-on-3 power play. It wasn't quite enough, as J.T. Compher's centering feed hit Devon Toews' skate and deflected in past Lehner with 2:45 to play to force overtime.
Tyson Barrie's shot off the crossbar nearly ended the game early, but the Isles stuck with it, with Brock Nelson driving into the Avalanche zone, Cizikas who in turn set up Pulock for the game winner.
Video: COL@NYI: Bailey chips in own rebound to tie game
PULOCK POTS TWO GOALS:
As effective as Ryan Pulock had been over the past month, it was wearing on him a little that the puck hadn't found the back of the net in 2019.
Pulock's last goal came on Dec. 31, so he felt some relief when he released his wicked one-timer and beat Semyon Varlamov for his first goal of the night - and again for the OT winner.
"I felt good, it's been a while since I scored so I was maybe at times gripping the stick a little too tight, but I was able to get a couple tonight, which hopefully I can stay hot," Pulock said.
Video: COL@NYI: Pulock hammers one-timer for lead
Pulock's two goals and eight shots were both season highs. The defenseman now has six points (2G, 4A) in his last four games.
"Pully has a great shot and he's a great offensive player," Martin said. "He makes a lot of plays at the blue line that people aren't expecting, walking around guys and he creates a lot for us. Big guy, good defender and he can pound it. When he's putting them in, hopefully he's putting a lot more in."
KUHNHACKL IN FOR CLUTTERBUCK:
Tom Kuhnhackl drew into the lineup for Cal Clutterbuck on Saturday afternoon. The game was Kuhnhackl's first since January 3. Kuhnhackl played on a line with Casey Cizikas and Martin.
The Islanders return to action on Sunday afternoon when they take on the Minnesota Wild at 3 p.m. at Barclays Center. The Islanders are 8-0-0 in the second half of back-to-back sets this season - tying a franchise record.