Skip to main content

Grabovski OT goal lifts Islanders past Blues

by Louie Korac / NHL.com

ST. LOUIS -- Mikhail Grabovski scored with 59.3 seconds remaining in overtime to give the New York Islanders a 3-2 victory against the St. Louis Blues at Scottrade Center on Saturday.

Grabovski beat Blues forward Jori Lehtera to the front of the net, took a backhand pass from Frans Nielsen in front, and redirected the puck past goalie Brian Elliott.

"It's good scoring, that's for sure," Grabovski said. "If the coaches give you a chance to play, I like to be one of the guys that executes. It's a great play from Frans Nielsen just to put it in (the crease)."

Islanders coach Jack Capuano has plenty of options in the NHL's new 3-on-3 overtime format.

"It's exciting for the fans. It is a lot of open ice," Capuano said. "As coaches, you've got to utilize certain guys you feel can do the job."

John Tavares extended his point streak to six games with his fifth goal, and Kyle Okposo scored for New York (5-2-1), which ended a four-game losing streak in St. Louis. The Islanders last won a road game against the Blues on Dec. 6, 2005, and had lost five straight overall against them.

"I think for us just to win is important for us tonight, plain and simple," Grabovski said. "Enjoy the moment scoring three."

New York goalie Thomas Greiss is 3-0-1 after he made 38 saves.

The Islanders penalty kill was 5-for-5 against the Blues and has killed 18 straight over the past five games.

"Whether they were warranted or not, we had to kill a lot of penalties," Capuano said. "Our goalie made some big saves when he had to."

The Blues (5-2-1) trailed 2-0 entering the third period but got goals from Colton Parayko and Alexander Steen. Parayko had an assist on Steen's goal.

The Blues played without injured players Jaden Schwartz (ankle), Paul Stastny (foot), Kevin Shattenkirk (lower body), Robby Fabbri (concussion) and Patrik Berglund (shoulder). They also found out one hour before the start of the game that forward Scottie Upshall would miss the game after getting sick.

St. Louis, which inserted defenseman Chris Butler into the lineup, was not in sync early but outshot New York 32-13 after the first period.

"I thought we really deserved more," Blues coach Ken Hitchcock said. "I thought we were a little bit sluggish in the first period. We weren't checking as hard as we've done. I thought we played great in the second and third. Guys gave a lot, gave a lot in the second and gave a ton in the third; missed a lot of chances in the second period, bang-bang plays at the net. We had some great opportunities there."

Tavares, who had an assist in the Islanders' 5-3 home loss to the Boston Bruins on Friday, has four goals and six assists during his point streak.

Elliott made 19 saves in his first loss in five games this season (4-0-1).

Okposo's power-play goal with 3:08 remaining in the first period came off a shot from the left circle with Anders Lee screening Elliott. The Blues goalie appeared to be in position, but the puck squirted through his pads for a 1-0 Islanders lead.

It was Okposo's ninth point in 10 games against St. Louis.

The Blues had the better of the play in the second period, but Griess made saves on all 14 shots he faced.

Tavares converted on a Nikolay Kulemin pass, beating Elliott high stick side with 1:19 remaining in the second period to give New York a 2-0 lead.

"Elite players find a way," Capuano said.

Parayko scored to pull the Blues within a goal at 2:26 of the third period. His wrist shot from the right boards caromed off New York defenseman Brian Strait's shoulder and past Greiss, who never saw the puck.

Parayko's goal ended a 103:33 goal drought for St. Louis.

Steen's redirection of Parayko's shot with 9:09 remaining tied the game 2-2. The Blues pressed on for the game-winner in the third but came away empty-handed despite outshooting the Islanders 15-2.

"That's what's frustrating," Elliott said. "To lose in OT is a disappointment, but you have to be happy with the one point and kind of move on from it and learn from that start. We had a lot of good things so you can't hang your head too much."

View More