National Hockey League
Buffalo 4, NY Islanders 2
When: 7:00 PM ET, Monday, May 3, 2021
Where: KeyBank Center, Buffalo, New York
Referees: Dean Morton, Conor O'Donnell
Linesmen: Brad Kovachik, Andrew Smith
Attendance: N/A

Sam Reinhart recorded the tiebreaking goal with 4:04 left in regulation and 28-year-old Michael Houser made 34 saves in his NHL debut, as the host Buffalo Sabres scored three times in the third to rally from two goals down and snap a nine-game losing streak to the New York Islanders with a 4-2 victory on Monday night.

Down 2-1 with less than nine minutes to play in regulation, Rasmus Asplund pushed the puck past Islanders netminder Semyon Varlamov (36 saves) -- whose club-record shutout streak ended at 248 minutes when Tage Thompson scored at 14:04 into the second -- for the equalizer with 8:35 to play. According to the Islanders, Varlamov's run was the 12th-longest such streak in NHL history.

But, Buffalo (14-32-7, 35 points) wasn't finished as Reinhart deflected in a Rasmus Ristolainen shot from the point to give the host its first lead of the night. Reinhart added an empty-netter shortly after to give the Sabres their first victory over the playoff-bound Islanders (31-16-5, 67 points) since February 2019.

Houser, meanwhile, was solid in keeping the Sabres in the game. The sixth different goalie to start a game for Buffalo this season, Houser was a member of the club's taxi squad and took the ice in a game for the first time since March 2020, while playing for the ECHL's Cincinnati Cyclones.

There was nothing Houser could do, though, when New York's Adam Pelech opened the scoring 9:15 into the contest. His shot toward the net was deflected in off the stick of Buffalo defenseman Henri Jokiharju.

The Islanders appeared to go up 2-0 less than a minute into the second period, but video review overturned the call on the ice after it was determined Casey Cizikas interfered with Houser. However, New York eventually went up 2-0 with 9:18 left in the second when Oliver Wahlstrom redirected Pelech's shot past Houser.

But it was Thompson who came through with a blast past Varlamov on the power play with 5:56 left in the middle frame to make it a 2-1 contest.

These teams conclude their season series Tuesday night at Buffalo.

--Field Level Media

Top Game Performances
NY Islanders   Buffalo
Adam Pelech 2 Points Sam Reinhart 3
Adam Pelech 1 Goals Sam Reinhart 2
Adam Pelech 1 Assists Rasmus Ristolainen 2
N/A Power Play Goals Tage Thompson 1
N/A Short Handed Goals N/A
Semyon Varlamov .923 Save Percentage Michael Houser .944
Semyon Varlamov 36 Saves Michael Houser 34
Team Stats Summary
Team Shots Goals Power Play Penalty Kill Penalty Mins Face Offs Won
NY Islanders 36 2 0-1 2-3 6 30
Buffalo 40 4 1-3 1-1 2 26
Upcoming Games
  • Buffalo will play their next game at home against NY Islanders. The Sabres have a W/L % of .154 after a win and .308 after a loss.
  • NY Islanders will play their next game on the road against Buffalo. The Islanders have a W/L % of .645 after a win and .500 after a loss.