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RECAP: Islanders 3, Oilers 2

by Chris Wescott / Edmonton Oilers


UNIONDALE, NY - Taylor Hall had a record-setting night and Devan Dubnyk made 37 saves between the pipes but the New York Islanders downed the Edmonton Oilers 3-2 tonight.

"I thought tonight we got into a spot where we were trying to help too much," said Oilers Head Coach Dallas Eakins. "On all their goals we had somebody run out of position to try to help somebody else. That was unnecessary and when we left that spot it was in our net. We've got to watch that. We want a team that cares, but you have to look over your own space first. We got a little over-zealous in our zone trying to help too much and it cost us."

The Islanders drew first blood when Josh Bailey sunk a one-timer past Oilers goaltender Devan Dubnyk at 9:59 of the opening period. Travis Hamonic and Pierre-Marc Bouchard both chipped in assists on the Islanders goal.

Then came the Oilers.

Centre Mark Arcobello found defenceman Justin Schultz in-deep near the right circle with a perfect pass on the tape. Schultz then did the same, finding Taylor Hall backdoor on Evgeni Nabokov. Hall sniped it top shelf and the Oilers tied the game with 4:08 remaining in the first.

That forward line would strike again, giving the team a 2-1 lead, just eight seconds later when Arcobello threw it on net from deep along the right wing. Nabokov got a piece of it, rebounding the puck out to a streaking Hall who buried it for his second goal of the night, third of the season. Jordan Eberle received an assist on the score as well as Arcobello.

Hall's two goals in eight seconds set a new franchise record for the fastest two goals, previously set by Wayne Gretzky who scored two goals in nine seconds against St. Louis on February 18, 1981.

The goals by Hall helped the Oilers escape an opening period on top in which they were out-shot 16-7.

"One of the positives tonight was probably Duby's performance," said Oilers forward David Perron. "We can't allow that many shots in a game, especially with all the talent they have on the other side. It's enough of saying we got close. We need results right now. Eight games into the season and we have five losses. We've got to find a way, and it's got to come from within the room."

The next period was all Islanders.

4:54 into the second period the Islanders capitalized on a Luke Gazdic tripping penalty by completing a perfect tic-tac-toe passing play. New York Captain John Tavares passed the puck from the top of the circle to Matt Moulsen at the post who centred it to Kyle Okposo in the slot. Okposo connected with the back of the net to tie things up, 2-2.

After killing off three quick penalties back-to-back-to-back, the Islanders gained the momentum. That momentum hit a climax when Tavares went top-shelf on Dubnyk at 18:53 of the second. Okposo and Michael Grabner earned the assists as New York took the 3-2 lead and the game.

"It came down to a couple of special teams plays," said Arcobello. "If we capitalize on the power-play opportunities we had and tighten up on the PK, it's a different game."

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