Andreas Athanasiou scored twice and Jonathan Bernier stopped 41 shots, giving the host Detroit Red Wings, who had lost 12 of their previous 13 games, a 2-1 win against the Islanders on Saturday.
Anders Lee, the Islanders’ captain, had a tying scored on a shot from the slot midway through the first period, his team-high 26th goal, and Thomas Greiss had 20 saves.
The Islanders, who had won two straight and four of five, remained in second place in the Metropolitan Division, two points behind Washington and two points ahead of Pittsburgh.
On his first goal, at 2 minutes 59 seconds of the first period, Athanasiou got a break. He centered a pass that went off the left leg of Islanders defenseman Ryan Pulock and into the net.
There was much more skill on display for his second goal. Athanasiou put Detroit ahead, 2-1, almost halfway through the second period. He tapped the puck past Greiss off Danny DeKeyser’s slap pass from the top of the right circle to the left side of the net.
Athanasiou celebrated his second goal by leaping to bump chests and hug his teammate Tyler Bertuzzi.You have 2 free articles remaining.SUBSCRIBE TO THE TIMES
“He gets pretty excited when we score, so I thought I’d get excited with him,” Athanasiou said.
It was the first victory for Bernier in more than a month.
“If Bernier doesn’t have that night, we probably win, 4-1,” Islanders Coach Barry Trotz said. “But they got a fortunate goal, and we probably have 25 scoring chances and couldn’t bury them.”
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WILD 5, RANGERS 2 Ryan Donato scored two goals and Devan Dubnyk had 26 saves as host Minnesota beat the Rangers to stay in the thick of the Western Conference playoff race.
Mika Zibanejad scored his first goal in nine games and Pavel Buchnevich added a third-period goal for the Rangers, who lost their third straight. Henrik Lundqvist finished with 41 saves.
Zibanejad established a career high with his 28th goal of the season. He is the first Rangers center to score at least 28 since Eric Lindros in 2001-2.
Eric Staal, Jared Spurgeon and J. T. Brown also scored for the Wild, who snapped a three-game losing streak that dropped them out of the final wild-card spot. Minnesota entered the day three points behind eighth-place Phoenix. It was the Wild’s second win in 11 home games.
Donato’s wrist shot on a breakaway at 4:40 of the first period beat Lundqvist’s stick side to put Minnesota ahead, 1-0. Zibanejad tied it 90 seconds later, catching Dubnyk out of position on a shot from behind the goal line that angled off the goaltender and into the net.
Donato was credited with a redirect on Luke Kunin’s shot with a little less than four minutes left in the first to reclaim the lead.
Staal made it 3-1 at 4:51 of the second period after his pass toward Zach Parise hit off the stick of Rangers defenseman Neal Pionk and into the net.
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Spurgeon’s power-play goal at 6:04 of the third gave him 13 for the season, the fourth-most goals by a Wild defenseman. Brown added an empty-netter at 17:25.
The Wild will play at Nassau Coliseum against the Islanders on Sunday.
LIGHTNING 6, CAPITALS 3 Alex Killorn got his first career hat trick, and Tampa Bay beat Washington in the teams’ first meeting since last year’s Eastern Conference finals.
The host Lightning set team records for wins (55) and points (114) in a season, becoming the 12th team in N.H.L. history to earn at least 55 victories in a season.