Tavares ends Leafs' win streak in OT
Toronto extends point streak to 5 games
Air Canada Centre, Toronto
John Tavares (NYI) — 1 goal (GWG), 1 assist
Dwayne Roloson (NYI) — 29 saves
Phil Kessel (TOR) — 1 goal
It was a night full of controversy.
The Toronto Maple Leafs had two possible goals disallowed and a penalty called against them in overtime, ending their Cinderella start and opening the door for the New York Islanders' first-ever overtime victory in Toronto.
John Tavares scored at 3:26 into the extra period to give the Islanders a 2-1 win over the Maple Leafs on Monday night at the Air Canada Centre.
"I just put my head down and tried to shoot it as hard as I could," said Tavares. "I wasn't even sure it went in.... It was a great feeling."
Matt Moulson also scored for the Islanders. Dwayne Roloson was outstanding, making 29 saves for his second win of the season.
The Maple Leafs, who suffered their first loss of the season after four victories, had two goals called back before Phil Kessel scored the game-tying goal on a power play late in the third.
Jean-Sebastien Giguere stopped 18 shots in the loss.
Leafs coach Ron Wilson appeared disappointed with the officiating and voiced his displeasure after the game.
"A couple of calls went completely against us," said Wilson. "At this point, [it's] crying over spilled milk. There's nothing you can do."
Kessel had the best chance of the first period on a one-timer from the slot. Tyler Bozak centred a pass from behind the net, but Roloson stopped the attempt.
After 11 minutes of play, the home side owned a commanding 6-1 shots advantage.
The first period moved along quickly. At one point, 6:52 expired without a break due to a flurry of short quick passes by each side.
Islanders take lead
Toward the end of the frame, the Islanders began to press the previously undefeated Leafs. Blake Comeau took a pass from the corner and wired a dangerous snap shot that nearly beat Giguere on the left post.
As the horn sounded to end the opening period, the teams were tied in shots (8-8) and on the score sheet.
After a penalty-free first period, Toronto got into trouble early in the second. Just 12 seconds in, Francois Beauchemin went off for tripping.
The Islanders didn't capitalize with the man advantage, but Moulson got the visitors on the board five seconds after the penalty expired. The young forward took a feed from Tavares, went forehand to backhand and sent a shot over Giguere's right shoulder to open the scoring.
The Leafs appeared to have evened the score late in the period.
Kris Versteeg redirected a point shot, collected his own rebound and beat Roloson along the ice. But the goal was called back as the Leafs forward had knocked down the original shot with an apparent high stick, much to the chagrin of Versteeg, the Leafs bench and the hometown crowd.
"I find it strange that a linesman behind the play made the call. You're not really sure if it was a high stick or not, and it wasn't," Wilson added.
Midway through the third, the Leafs appeared to get the tying goal for the second time.
Colby Armstrong jammed a shot from behind the net that looked like it crossed the goal line. But a video review showed the puck had banked off the post, went across crease and popped out of danger.
Kessel finally broke Roloson's shutout bid late in the third.
The Leafs sniper set up on the right-hand boards and one-timed a rocket through the Islanders goaltender, igniting the Air Canada Centre crowd.
But the celebration would be short-lived in overtime as Tavares ended the game on a 4-on-3 power play after Brett Lebda, playing in his first game as a Maple Leaf, went off for goaltender interference.
"It's just the way the game goes," said Lebda. "Everything was a close call today. It was up and down ... the refs are doing the best they can and they're going to make mistakes like we do."
It was only the second time this season the Leafs have allowed a power-play goal.