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Penguins 4, Islanders 2

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UNIONDALE, N.Y. -- James Neal, Simon Despres, Brandon Sutter and Pascal Dupuis scored for Pittsburgh, and goalie Marc-Andre Fleury survived a 40-second third period onslaught by the New York Islanders in an otherwise brilliant 32-save performance as the Penguins won 4-2 Tuesday night at Nassau Coliseum.

The Penguins (7-3-0) won their fourth in a row and remained in first place in the Atlantic Division. Most important, Pittsburgh dodged a scare in the second period, when star Sidney Crosby was hit in the face with a puck. Crosby, who missed 101 games the previous two seasons due to concussions, was helped off the ice but returned to the game a few minutes later.

The Islanders (4-4-1) avoided a second straight shutout when Michael Grabner and Brad Boyes scored in succession early in the third period, but New York could not get the equalizer as its their three-game winning streak against the Penguins was snapped.

Dupuis' empty-net goal sealed the victory for Pittsburgh.

The Islanders haven't won four in a row over the Penguins since a five-game streak from Feb. 1, 1986, through Dec. 23, 1986.

The Penguins took a 1-0 lead on Neal's power-play goal just 2:58 into the game, but it was the Islanders who controlled the offensive flow for the first two periods.

The Islanders outshot the Penguins 24-14 in the first 40 minutes and had six power play opportunities, but Fleury made a series of point-blank saves -- including three during a power play midway through the second -- before Despres extended the Penguins' lead to 2-0 with a slap shot from just inside the blue line with four minutes left in the period.

The Penguins seemed to put the game away when Sutter scored on a 2-on-1 breakaway 1:44 into the third, but the Islanders made it a game with quick goals by Grabner and Boyes. Grabner was open to the left of Fleury, whom he beat 3:14 into the third for the Islanders' first goal since Boyes' overtime game-winner against the Devils last Thursday.

Just 35 seconds later, Boyes pulled the Islanders within a goal when he put back Matt Moulson's shot, which had glanced off Fleury. The Islanders had a handful of chances to tie the game, but Fleury continually made spectacular saves to preserve the Penguins' lead, including a stick save of Boyes' slap shot with 2:35 left.

Evgeni Nabokov made 22 saves for the Islanders, who went 0-for-7 on the power play and are 0-for-14 in their past two games.

NOTES: Islanders forward Colin McDonald returned to the lineup after serving a two-game suspension for delivering a reckless hit to the Penguins' Ben Lovejoy on Jan. 29. ... The Islanders signed forward Brett Gallant to a one-year, entry-level deal Tuesday. Gallant has 174 penalty minutes in 37 games with the Islanders' AHL affiliate in Bridgeport, Conn., and has racked up 649 penalty minutes in 143 games over four minor league seasons. ... Penguins left winger Chris Kunitz was named the NHL's second star for the week ending Feb. 3 after he scored five goals, including a pair of game-winners, in leading Pittsburgh to a 3-0 week. Kunitz collected a career-high four goals in the Penguins' 6-3 win over the Capitals on Sunday. He was the first player to score four goals in a game for the Penguins since Jaromir Jagr on Oct. 14, 2000.

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