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game recap

Islanders defeat Oilers, match last season's win total

Lehner makes 34 saves to help New York get 35th victory

by Brian Compton @BComptonNHL / Deputy Managing Editor

Lehner's incredible pad save

EDM@NYI: Lehner slides across to rob Klefbom

Robin Lehner pushes across the crease and makes a remarkable pad save to rob Oscar Klefbom's golden opportunity in the 2nd period

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NEW YORK -- The New York Islanders extended their lead atop the Metropolitan Division to five points with a 5-2 win against the Edmonton Oilers at Barclays Center on Saturday.

Ryan Pulock, Valtteri Filppula, Mathew Barzal, Anders Lee and Brock Nelson scored for New York (35-17-6), which matched last season's win total. Devon Toews and Josh Bailey each had two assists, and Robin Lehner made 34 saves; he is 14-3-1 in his past 18 games.

It was the Islanders' final regular-season game at Barclays Center; they will play their 12 remaining home games at Nassau Coliseum. They will return here should they reach the second round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs.


[WATCH: All Oilers vs. Islanders highlights]


"Winning's fun," Bailey said. "We're enjoying it. We're putting in the work when we need to; I think we've got a group of guys that are willing to do what it takes. It's going to have to stay that way."

Leon Draisaitl and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins scored for Edmonton (24-29-5), which has been outscored 16-6 during a four-game losing streak, the past three on the road. Mikko Koskinen made 19 saves.

The Oilers are seven points behind the Minnesota Wild for the second wild card into the Stanley Cup Playoffs from the Western Conference. 

Video: EDM@NYI: Pulock rips one-timer past Koskinen for PPG

"We made some big errors on this trip and paid for it," Edmonton coach Ken Hitchcock said. "We played hard in all three games; I'm really proud of our effort. We did a lot of really good things. Unfortunately, at the turn of games, we were the one that made a mistake. Today was a perfect example.

"We were coming on strong, we were on the power play, it was 3-2. Thirty seconds after the power play we get scored on. It's unfortunate."

Pulock gave the Islanders a 1-0 lead with a power-play goal at 3:02 of the second period when he one-timed Toews' cross-ice feed from the left circle.

Lehner kept the Islanders in front at 8:08 when he stretched across his crease to get his right pad on Oscar Klefbom's rebound chance from point-blank range.

Filppula made it 2-0 when he redirected Nick Leddy's shot from the left point for his 12th goal of the season at 13:30.

"For us, it's important not to get discouraged," Oilers defenseman Darnell Nurse said. "Bring that hard-working attitude each and every day. We need to limit obviously the chances that we give up and find a way to get on the right side of the score sheet. We're doing a lot of things right, but at the same time we're not getting the results."

Video: EDM@NYI: Filppula deflects Leddy's feed past Koskinen

Nugent-Hopkins cut the lead to 2-1 at 19:57 when he redirected Kris Russell's soft wrist shot.

The Islanders restored their two-goal lead when Barzal redirected Toews' slap shot at 5:09 of the third period to make it 3-1.

New York is 18-4-2 since Toews made his NHL debut Dec. 23.

"Anytime you play in the NHL it's a blast," Toews said. "It's always fun to win; we're on a good roll right now, we're all playing well for each other and it's a lot of fun."

Draisaitl got the Oilers within 3-2 with a power-play goal at 10:20 when Connor McDavid made a no-look pass from the slot to the right circle, where Draisaitl was all alone for a one-timer.

Video: EDM@NYI: Draisaitl buries McDavid's feed for PPG

Lee finished a 2-on-1 with Leo Komarov for his first goal in 12 games to make it 4-2 at 17:44, and Nelson scored an empty-net goal at 18:16 for the 5-2 final.

"That felt great; awesome pass by Leo," Lee said. "He trucked up the ice and put it right on my tape. Great play by Leo."


They said it

"I thought the first period was the best we've played all year on the road. If we keep building on that, we've got some things to build on. We've just got to take positives right now from this, and hopefully we can continue to do it." -- Oilers coach Ken Hitchcock


"We're enjoying this. We're not taking anything for granted. It's giving us life each and every day. Everyone shows up every morning coming to not only improve, but to repeat what we've been doing and staying on track and not getting too far ahead of ourselves. Everything's just really falling into place a little bit." -- Islanders captain Anders Lee

Video: EDM@NYI: Lee buries Komarov's pass on the rush


Need to know

Edmonton went 1-for-5 on the power play. … Draisaitl has 11 goals in his past 10 games. … Forward Sam Gagner, who was acquired earlier Saturday in a trade that sent forward Ryan Spooner to the Vancouver Canucks, played 9:56 in his Oilers return. Gagner was Edmonton's first-round pick (No. 6) at the 2007 NHL Draft. … Goalie Anthony Stolarz, acquired from the Philadelphia Flyers for goalie Cam Talbot on Friday, backed up Koskinen. … Oilers forward Kyle Brodziak played his 900th NHL game. … New York has a nine-game point streak at home (8-0-1). … The Islanders are 29-2-1 when they score at least three goals. … New York finished 12-6-2 at Barclays Center this season.


What's next

Oilers: Host the Arizona Coyotes on Tuesday (9 p.m. ET; SNW, FS-A, NHL.TV)

Islanders: At the Calgary Flames on Wednesday (9:30 p.m. ET; SN1, MSG+, NHL.TV)

Video: Five different Isles score in win against Oilers

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