Uniondale, NY (SportsNetwork.com) - John Tavares scored his first two goals of
the season and Evgeni Nabokov made 33 saves to carry the New York Islanders
past the Phoenix Coyotes, 6-1, at Nassau Coliseum.
Josh Bailey recorded three points with a goal and two assists while Peter
Regin scored and assisted on Matt Donovan's tally as New York bounced back
from a shootout loss to the Blue Jackets in its home opener on Saturday.
Martin Hanzal had the lone goal for the Coyotes, who have been outscored 10-2
in two games since defeating the Rangers in their season opener.
Mike Smith, who took the loss in a 4-1 setback at San Jose on Saturday,
surrendered five goals on 20 shots and was pulled at the start of the third
period. Thomas Greiss made seven saves in relief.
Smith's forgettable showing started early. Less than two minutes in, Regin
took Brock Nelson's pass along the boards near the blueline, skated in
unabated and beat Smith glove-side for his first goal as an Islander.
The hosts cashed in on a 5-on-3 advantage at the 15:07 mark of the opening
period. The extra space allowed for easy passing lanes, and Tavares finished
off Frans Nielsen's cross-crease feed from the left doorstep.
New York, which blew a 2-0 lead against Columbus, avoided another letdown by
adding three more goals in the second period.
Donovan lit the lamp on the power play at the 11:47 mark as his point shot
trickled through Smith's pads and across the goal line for his first NHL goal.
The Coyotes got on the board when Hanzal's screened shot from between the
circles caught Nabokov off guard with 7 1/2 minutes left in the frame, but New
York regained the three-goal difference just 2:19 later after Tavares' pass
deflected off a defenseman's stick and into the back of the net.
Colin McDonald capped New York's flurry with a low snap shot, and a give-and-
go between Nielsen and Bailey resulted in the only goal of the final period.
Smith came in 3-0 with a 1.00 goals against average against the Islanders ...
Nielsen and Michael Grabner both had three assists for New York ... The
Islanders were hosting the Coyotes for the first time since Dec. 18, 2010.
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