Last updated: October 05. 2013 10:36PM - 1148 Views
Associated Press



New York Islanders' Andrew MacDonald, center, fights with Columbus Blue Jackets' Brandon Dubinsky (17) as Islanders goalie Evgeni Nabokov (20) stands guard during the first period of an NHL hockey game on Saturday, Oct. 5, 2013, in Uniondale, N.Y. (AP Photo/Kathy Kmonicek)
New York Islanders' Andrew MacDonald, center, fights with Columbus Blue Jackets' Brandon Dubinsky (17) as Islanders goalie Evgeni Nabokov (20) stands guard during the first period of an NHL hockey game on Saturday, Oct. 5, 2013, in Uniondale, N.Y. (AP Photo/Kathy Kmonicek)
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(AP) Cam Atkinson scored in the fourth round of a shootout, and the Columbus Blue Jackets rallied from two goals down in the third period to spoil the New York Islanders' home opener with a 3-2 victory on Saturday night.


The Islanders and goalie Evgeni Nabokov seemed to be in complete control before Mark Letestu and Nick Foligno scored 4:19 apart to get even at 2-2 after the Blue Jackets managed only 12 shots in the first two periods.


New York built its lead in the second on a power-play goal by defenseman Lubomir Visnovsky and an even-strength tally by Matt Moulson. Visnovsky added an assist, and captain John Tavares had two for the Islanders.


New York, which won its season opener on Friday with a shootout win at New Jersey, got one goal in four rounds of this tiebreaker against Sergei Bobrovsky by Moulson, who was the only scorer one night earlier.


Letestu also scored in this shootout, setting the stage for Atkinson's winner.


Both teams had chances to win in a wild overtime.


Kyle Okposo fired two hard drives during New York's power play. Columbus nearly caught the Islanders pinned up ice when Jack Johnson almost had a breakaway as he left the penalty box, however the lead pass was too far in front, and Nabokov knocked it away.


R.J. Umberger then led a Blue Jackets' 3-on-1 rush, yet his shot was also stopped by Nabokov.


Columbus, which lost its season opener at home on Friday to Calgary, had a 5-4 shots advantage in overtime. New York held a 30-29 edge overall.


Letestu started the rally with a power-play goal at 7:45, Columbus' first advantage of the night, and Foligno tied it from in close with 8:06 left in regulation.


Nabokov wasn't overly busy early, but looked sharp in keeping the Blue Jackets at bay until the third-period surge.


The Islanders broke out in the second period, scoring twice including a power-play goal that ended the scoreless deadlock.


New York put pressure on Bobrovsky and nearly scored when Josh Bailey fired a drive that Bobrovsky barely knocked away with his glove. In the ensuing scrum, Artem Anisimov was whistled for hooking, giving the Islanders the first man-advantage of the game.


On the power play, Tavares moved the puck from the right circle up to Visnovsky, who was in the middle of the ice just inside the blue line. Visnovsky sent a pass left to Frans Nielsen, who quickly pushed the puck back to the defenseman for a shot that sailed through traffic and past Bobrovsky at 8:17.


The Islanders needed only 5:44 more to double their lead, this time with Tavares and Visnovsky assisting on Moulson's first traditional goal of the young season.


Tavares, the Islanders' new captain, did hard work along the right-wing boards to dig out the puck. He quickly sent a quick pass down to the crease, where Moulson skated into the puck and jammed it past Bobrovsky.


There were few prime scoring chances in the goal-less and penalty-free first period in which the Islanders held a 9-4 edge in shots.


NOTES: This was the first meeting between the teams since Columbus joined the Eastern Conference and became division rivals with New York in the newly formed Metropolitan Division. ... The Islanders were trying for their first 2-0 start since 2007. ... Letestu scored his 40th career NHL goal in 184 games. He led Columbus last season with 13 goals. ... Both teams were 1 for 2 on power plays.


Associated Press
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