NEW YORK (AP) — Cal Clutterbuck had two goals and an assist as the New York Islanders got all their scoring in the final two periods in a 7-2 win over the Toronto Maple Leafs on Tuesday night.
Anders Lee and Noah Dobson each had a goal and an assist, and Zach Parise, Hudson Fasching and Simon Holmstrom also scored to help the Islanders win their third straight and improve to 7-2-1 in their last 10. Jean-Gabriel Pageau had two assists and Ilya Sorokin finished with 24 saves.
New York moved three points ahead of Florida for the top wild-card berth in the Eastern Conference. The Panthers lost 6-3 at Philadelphia.
“We like the way we are playing,” Parise said. “You don’t want to get too caught up in scoreboard watching but we want to take care of what we have to take care of.”
Sam Lafferty and Mitchell Marner scored for Toronto, which had won two straight. Ilya Samsonov made 22 saves.
“We weren’t getting enough pucks directly to the net, trying to make too many plays,” Marner said. “They won a lot more battles. When they got the pucks, they were getting them toward the net and getting bodies there. … When they had their clean looks, they didn’t miss.”
After the Islanders scored three times in the second period to take a 3-1 lead, Auston Matthews set up Marner for a one-timer from the slot to pull the Maple Leafs within one at 3:39 of the third. It was Marner's 27th.
The Islanders responded 44 seconds later as Clutterbuck fired a shot past Samsonov's blocker to restore a two-goal lead. It was his second of the night and sixth of the season.
“We played pretty well, 200 feet, against a pretty good offensive team, “ Clutterbuck said. “It goes to show if we can stick to the plan, be very disciplined in it, we can have success.”
Holstrom made it 5-2 at the midpoint of the third as he converted his second attempt in front on a rebound of Lee's try.
Dobson scored an empty-netter with 6:04 left for his 13th, and Lee redirected a shot from the point for his 27th less than three minutes later to cap the four-goal period.
Lafferty opened the scoring with a deflection in front with just under nine minutes left in the first.
“We are a resilient group,” Dobson said. “Even when we go down one early, we know and trust our game. They got some high-end players, if you give them time and space, especially coming through the neutral zone, they can take advantage. I thought we did a good job defensively as a group of five staying above guys. Obviously, when we got our chances we did a great job capitalizing.”
Sorokin kept the Islanders deficit at one goal with an incredible stick save with 7:22 left in the opening period, swatting Maple Leafs defenceman Erik Gustafsson's shot at a wide-open net out of the air with his stick.
Parise tied it 28 seconds into the second with a one-timer off a pass from Mayfield. Pageau also had an assist on the play to extend his point streak to four games.
Fasching wired a shot past Samsonov's glove with 6:10 left in the period after Toronto's Timothy Liljegren misplayed a clearing attempt in the defensive zone. It was Fasching's seventh goal in 39 games this season.
The Islanders extended their lead to 3-1 as Clutterbuck redirected Ryan Pulock’s shot past Samsonov. It was Clutterbuck’s first goal since returning to the lineup in mid-March after missing 20 games with an upper-body injury.
Islanders forward Brock Nelson left the game and did not return after receiving a punishing check from Noel Acciari along the boards.
Marner recorded his 90th point of the season and became the first Maple Leafs skater since Doug Gilmour (1992-94 and 1993-94) to post consecutive 90-point seasons. The only other skaters to do so in franchise history are Darryl Sittler (1975--78 and 1979-81) and Lanny McDonald (1975-77). ... Islanders president and general manager Lou Lamoriello registered his 1,400th win as GM, joining David Poile (1525) as the only two with at least 1,400 regular-season victories. Lamoriello has 188 wins with the Islanders, 118 with the Maple Leafs (2015-18) and 1,093 with the Devils (1987-2015).
Maple Leafs: At Florida on Thursday night.
Islanders: At Columbus on Friday night.
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By: Scott Charles, The Associated Press