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John Tavares nets OT winner as Isles top Ducks

New York Islanders left wing Nikolai Kulemin, left,

New York Islanders left wing Nikolai Kulemin, left, collides with Anaheim Ducks center Ryan Kesler during the second period of an NHL game in Anaheim, Calif., Wednesday, Nov. 5, 2014. Credit: AP / Alex Gallardo

ANAHEIM, Calif. - It probably could have been easier, given their opponents were missing both their stars and both their goaltenders.

But the Islanders will take whatever they can get. And what they got Wednesday night was John Tavares' overtime power-play goal at 2:18 for a 3-2 win over the undermanned Ducks at the Honda Center, snapping the Isles' three-game losing streak.

Given a power play when Sami Vatanen got his elbow up on Calvin de Haan, Tavares ended it with a shot through traffic to beat Jason LaBarbera, Tavares' second of the game.

Jaroslav Halak made 32 saves and Kyle Okposo had the other Islanders goal in a game in which Anaheim's Corey Perry and Ryan Getzlaf missed because of the flu.

After catching a lineup break before the game, the Islanders caught an in-game break from the NHL's Situation Room 1:31 into the third period of a tie game.

Halak stopped Matt Beleskey's shot, but Travis Hamonic came flying in a second later and the puck got caught up in his jersey as he took the net off its moorings. Referee Dennis LaRue signaled goal, but video review showed the puck did not cross the line before Hamonic wiped the net out, keeping the score tied.

Perry, who leads the NHL with 11 goals, and Getzlaf, the Ducks captain and second-leading scorer, were sent home due to flu symptoms.

In addition to missing their two top offensive players, the Ducks were without their two regular goaltenders. The Islanders seemed to have gotten lucky in a building they've rarely found happiness, having last won here in the 2006-07 season, five trips ago.

And the game started well for the Islanders. Tavares won a draw, then pounced on a rebound of de Haan's shot to beat LaBarbera at 3:38 of the first to open the scoring.

The Islanders cycled through their four lines and six defensemen throughout the remainder of the first period, getting good work from all corners of the lineup and even a successful penalty kill.

They opened the second period with 34 seconds of power- play time and needed only a few of those. Okposo settled a bouncing puck off the boards and snapped a shot past LaBarbera 10 seconds into the period, giving the Islanders their first two-goal lead in four games.

But the penalty kill bedeviled the Islanders once more and snapped the depleted Ducks to life. With Thomas Hickey in the box, the Islanders were successfully keeping Anaheim's power play at bay until Hamonic's stick broke. With the Ducks still cycling, Cal Clutterbuck attempted to hand off his stick to Hamonic, who left Beleskey alone in front. Beleskey deflected a pass behind Halak at 9:15.

The shots had been 19-6 in the Isles favor up until the start of the power play. Within four minutes, they were 19-17 as the Ducks revved up their game.

The wave seemed to pass, but the Islanders were sloppy late in the second and the Ducks capitalized. Matt Martin and Cory Conacher both deflected pucks in the defensive zone and tried to break the other way, only to have Anaheim retain control; in the ensuing mess, Emerson Etem tossed a soft, screened shot past Halak for a 2-2 game headed to the third.

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