NHL Wrap: Crosby scores late, Pens top Islanders

NHL Wrap: Crosby scores late, Pens top Islanders
November 23, 2013, 12:45 am
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Sidney Crosby scored with 1:16 left in the third period to give the Penguins a 4-3 win over the Islanders Friday night. (USA Today Images)

PITTSBURGH -- The New York Islanders' up-and-down, fast-paced tempo always seem to bring out the worst defensively in the Pittsburgh Penguins.

Fortunately, for the Penguins, captain Sidney Crosby was there, helping his team prevent a second home collapse in four weeks against the upstart Islanders.

Crosby scored with 1:16 remaining on Friday to give the Penguins a 4-3 victory over the Islanders during a game that saw New York rally from a pair of two two-goal deficits for the second time in two games against Pittsburgh.

"We had the lead, so they started taking chances, and we kind of got sucked into playing that style of game," Crosby said. "Instead of managing the puck, we were taking chances and throwing the puck everywhere, and when you play that game, whoever scores the last goal is going to win."

That's exactly what happened and Crosby provided the late game-winner (see full recap).

Desharnais, Habs hold off Capitals
WASHINGTON -- After David Desharnais had scored his long-awaited first goal of the season, after his team had taken a three-goal lead that prompted Washington Capitals coach Adam Oates to call out his veterans, and after Alex Ovechkin had scored twice to take the solo lead among NHL goal-scorers, there was still a lead for the Montreal Canadiens to preserve in the closing minutes.

And, for a few hectic seconds, Peter Budaj had to do it without his stick.

The Canadiens goaltender lost his stick in a crowd while the Capitals were pressing in the offensive zone. He started to reach down and pick it up, but everything was happening too fast. Finally, he used his pads to stop a close-range shot from Martin Erat and smothered the puck with about three minutes remaining, and Montreal held on for a 3-2 win Friday night.

"You feel kind of naked without it," Budaj said. "They had a couple of shots, but the guys, they knew that I had lost the stick and they were blocking shots, and then they had one from the corner there. I wanted to pick it up but then I was, like, I might as well not. I don't want to be getting scored on while I'm looking at the stick. I've just got to focus on the puck."

Budaj finished with 25 saves in place of usual starter Carey Price, and Travis Moen and Daniel Briere also scored for the Canadiens, who have won two straight thanks to a resurgence of Desharnais and linemate Max Pacioretty. Desharnais assisted on two of Pacioretty's three goals in Tuesday's 6-2 victory over the Minnesota Wild (see full recap).

Monahan gives Flames SO win over Panthers
CALGARY, Alberta -- Sean Monahan scored in the sixth round of the shootout to lift the Calgary Flames to a 4-3 win over the Florida Panthers on Friday night.

Joe Colborne had a goal and an assist in regulation, and Sven Baertschi and Blair Jones also scored for Calgary, which has secured at least one point in three straight games (2-0-1).

Flames goalie Reto Berra stopped 23 shots while playing in his sixth straight game. Berra stopped Florida forward Nick Bjugstad in the sixth round of the shootout to preserve the victory after Monahan had given Calgary the edge.

Tom Gilbert, Jimmy Hayes and Marcel Goc scored in regulation for the Panthers, who finished up their five-game road at 2-2-1.

Veteran goalie Tim Thomas, who played in his eighth straight game for the Panthers, finished with 21 saves (see full recap).