The Islanders began Tuesday night’s matchup with the Stars the same way they have several other games this season.
Outshooting their opponent by a gaping margin, controlling the pace of play and still emerging from the first period in deadlocked game. But as Islanders coach Barry Trotz has recently said, nothing has been coming easily. Struggling yet again to continue their heavyweight play after the opening 20 minutes, the Islanders came from behind to beat the Stars 4-3 on Anthony Beauvillier’s second goal of the night, a breakaway in overtime.
It was the Islanders’ eighth overtime win this season, a franchise record.
After holding Dallas to just seven shots on goal in a 1-1 first period, the Islanders let the Stars’ production balloon to 21 shots through the second.
The Stars pounced whenever they had the chance, adding another goal in the second before taking a 3-2 lead in the third. The Isles couldn’t get a shot on goal in the third until almost eight minutes in. But when Dallas gifted the Islanders a late third-period power play, Mathew Barzal came through in the clutch to force the home team’s 16th overtime of the season.
The Stars looked as if they hadn’t yet gotten off the plane as Beauvillier opened up the scoring just a minute and 30 seconds into the game, backhanding a feed from Ryan Pulock past Dallas netminder Ben Bishop.
It wasn’t until Casey Cizikas took a seat in the penalty box for interference at 13:19 that the Stars gained some momentum, with Denis Gurianov capitalizing on the man-advantage at 14:08 to tie it.
Once again losing their competitive edge coming out of the intermission, the Islanders allowed the Stars to take their first lead of the night after Brock Nelson turned the puck over inside Dallas’ zone. Jason Dickson found the back of the net after a three-on-two rush to go up 2-1 at 12:12.
But Derick Brassard struck just under a minute-and-a-half later, netting his first goal in 19 games, squeezing the puck past Bishop from an impossible angle at 13:38. Kieffer Bellows, who made his NHL debut, jump-started the play after helping force a turnover, carrying the puck into the zone and then registering an assist on Brassard’s tally for his first NHL point.