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Islanders' third period comeback falls short in 4-2 loss to Lightning

NEW YORK (AP) — Nikita Kucherov had a goal and two assists and the Tampa Bay Lightning snapped a three-game losing streak with a 4-2 win over the New York Islanders on Saturday.

Kucherov leads the NHL with 98 points (37 goals and 61 assists).

Nicholas Paul, Brayden Point and Luke Glendening also scored for the Lightning. Victor Hedman had two assists and Andrei Vasilevskiy made 32 saves as Tampa Bay opened a three-game trip in the Northeast that includes stops in New Jersey and Philadelphia.

Anders Lee and Brock Nelson scored for the Islanders, who lost for the fifth time in six games. Defenseman Noah Dobson added two assists. Ilya Sorokin finished with 18 saves.

New York is 4-5-3 since Patrick Roy took over behind the bench, replacing coach Lane Lambert on Jan. 20.

Kucherov extended the Lightning lead to two goals, scoring his team-best 37th at 5:34 of the opening period. Tampa Bay moved the puck around the offensive zone with ease before Kucherov sent a one-timer past Sorokin.

Just 1:22 earlier, Paul opened the scoring for Tampa Bay. Paul’s 16th of the season came moments after a Lightning power play expired early in the first period. Sorokin handled a shot by Brando Hagel’ from the circle, but Paul scored on the rebound.

Point scored his 29th of the season with a man advantage, capitalizing on the Islanders’ league-worst penalty kill five minutes into the middle frame.

Lee scored at 13:44 of the third period to spoil Vasilevksiy’s shutout bid and Nelson scored on the power play, pulling the Islanders within a goal at 17:25. Roy elected to pull Sorokin in favor of the extra attacker and New York capitalized on the 6-on-4 advantage.

Hedman and Lightning coach Jon Cooper were visibly upset at the delay-of-game penalty that led to the Islanders’ power play.

Glendening scored into an empty net in the final minute to seal the victory for Tampa Bay. Kucherov picked up his second assist, adding to his league-leading total of 98 points.

Islanders forward Casey Cizikas returned to the lineup after a one-game absence and defenseman Scott Mayfield did not play due to a lower-body injury.

UP NEXT:

Lightning: At New Jersey on Sunday.

Islanders: At Dallas Stars on Monday.