BOSTON -- P.A. Parenteau is at his best when his feet and his mouth are running. Both were in fine form Saturday night, which is why Parenteau ended up with the game-winning goal, two assists and a few shoves and comments from Capitals players.
"When I do that stuff, it gets me into the game," Parenteau said after the Islanders held a meeting and headed here for Monday night's game against the Bruins. "When I chirp guys on the bench or forecheck hard, it gets me going. It all comes from confidence."
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Parenteau, 28, always had the attitude, even as one AHL season became seven without much of a sniff of the NHL across three organizations.
Even last season, when he jelled with John Tavares and Matt Moulson and played his first full NHL season, he heard plenty of talk that he was in the big leagues only because he could score alongside a talent like Tavares, not on his own abilities.
But here he is, still proving people wrong and letting them know about it. His 11 points in the first 11 games put him among the top 50 scorers in the league, and his three-point night in Saturday's 5-3 win over the Caps came in his first game with a new line, on the right side of Brian Rolston and Frans Nielsen.
"I always feel like, even though I know people talk, that I help Johnny and Mouls as much as they help me," Parenteau said. "And the other night, I played with another great center in Fransie. I just let people think what they want."
And he adds to it by speaking freely whenever asked. After spending three seasons in the Rangers' organization and playing only 22 games in 2009-10 with the big club, Parenteau did not contain his glee at nearly knocking the Rangers out of the playoff hunt at the end of last season.
He spoke up equally strongly when the Isles chased former teammate Dwayne Roloson in a 5-1 win over the Lightning last month. On a team with some young players and some older leaders, Parenteau's mouth doesn't get him in trouble because he doesn't go overboard, and he's backed it up with his play.
"A lot of guys play to their personality, and that's what P.A. does," Jack Capuano said. "He's an enthusiastic guy, and the thing he's been doing better is his work ethic hasn't quit. He stays effective in our system without taking anything away from his creativity."
Notes & quotes: Capuano said he's likely to keep the new lines he configured for Saturday in Monday night's game. "It's tough to change them after a win," he said . . . Parenteau won't face further discipline from the NHL after his five-minute boarding penalty in the first period.