UNIONDALE, N.Y. -- Only scoring in the third period on the road may not be a sustainable formula for winning away from home for the Tampa Bay Lightning. But on Tuesday night, it sure was exciting.
Center Valtteri Filppula scored two goals in the final 2:53 of regulation -- including the game-tying score with 3.8 seconds left -- and added a goal in the shootout as the Lightning completed a stunning comeback and beat the New York Islanders, 3-2, at Nassau Coliseum.
"There really isn't a much better feeling," said Lightning goalie Ben Bishop, who made 32 saves in regulation and overtime and another two in the shootout. "The guys are so excited. It's a great feeling. I don't know what else to say except for it's a relief."
The lightning-fast comeback -- pun intended -- by Tampa Bay allowed it to finish 2-1-0 on a three-game road trip. The Lightning scored three goals in the third period of a 3-0 win over Detroit on Sunday.
"I remember after the second we came off and I'm thinking, OK, we've played eight periods on the road and we've been shut out in seven of them," Lightning coach Jon Cooper said. "But we've been a pretty good team in the third."
The Lightning, who have scored 35 of their 93 goals in the third period, did not appear likely to mount the comeback when Islanders center Frans Nielsen scored just beyond the midway point of the third.
But Filppula's unassisted goal off an Islanders turnover provided a spark for the Lightning, who pulled Bishop for an extra attacker in the final minute. The Lightning attacked the Islanders' zone in the last 30 seconds, and Filppula sent the game to overtime when he poked a loose puck past goalie Evgeni Nabokov during a furious scrum that involved every player on the ice.
"Lot of guys in the pile, I was standing outside hoping the puck would come out," Filppula said. "Sometimes it stays there and sometimes it comes out. You need a little luck, too, and I felt like I had that at the end there."
Islanders coach Jack Capuano couldn't mask his disgust at Filppula's second goal.
"The last one, anything goes there," Capuano said. "If (officials) are going to call a penalty with two seconds left, who cares? At that point you've got to be strong in front of your goal and you've got to battle and do what it takes in that area."
The Islanders had a couple serious chances in the final 30 seconds of overtime, but Bishop turned back a shot by right winger Cal Clutterbuck and stopped left winger Thomas Vanek at point-blank range.
Bishop opened the shootout by turning back a shot from Vanek before Filppula beat Nabokov with a wrister.
Nielsen's tip-in pulled the Islanders even, but Lightning right winger Nikita Kucherov scored and Bishop stopped center John Tavares' shot to seal the win.
"Let's be honest," Cooper said. "We're down two with four (minutes to go). We stole a couple points tonight."
The win marked the fifth time this season the Lightning have scored two third-period goals in a comeback win.
"You can't help but sit here and say it gives you a little bit of confidence," Cooper said. "The problem with that is you don't want to be down two with five to go. We're on the road, we're trying to keep our head above water here, and if you want to make a push for the playoffs, you've got to win your game at home and you've got to be .500 or above on the road. And that brought us to .500 (8-8-2) on the road."
The Islanders, meanwhile, keep coming up with gruesome ways to lose, regardless of locale. New York (9-19-7) has lost 13 of its last 14 (1-9-4) and has blown a two-goal lead in five of its losses.
Home has been especially cruel to the Islanders, who have lost their last four games at Nassau Coliseum in overtime or the shootout. The Islanders held a third-period lead in three of those games and also gave up an extra-attacker goal in the last minute of regulation of a shootout loss to Washington on Nov. 30.
On Saturday night, the Islanders played Montreal to a scoreless tie in regulation before losing on a goal 1:51 into overtime.
"You've got to find a way, as well as we played again for 50-whatever minutes in this game," Capuano said. "It's tough to swallow. We've got to find a way to get it done."
Right winger Kyle Okposo scored 11 seconds into the second period for the Islanders while Nabokov made 34 saves.
NOTES: The Lightning's lone visit of the season to Long Island was a homecoming for Tampa Bay coach Jon Cooper, who graduated from Hofstra University, located across the street from Nassau Coliseum. Cooper played four years of Division I lacrosse and one year on Hofstra's club hockey team. He spent the Lightning's off day Monday visiting the campus. ... The Islanders scratched D Matt Carkner, C Casey Cizikas and RW Colin McDonald. Cizikas missed his second consecutive game due to a jaw injury, while Carkner and McDonald were healthy scratches. ... Islanders D Lubomir Visnovsky, out since suffering a concussion on Oct. 19, told Newsday he is feeling better and may be ready to begin off-ice work soon. ... The Lightning scratched D Victor Hedman, LW Pierre-Cedric Labrie and C Dana Tyrell. Hedman missed his sixth straight game with an upper-body injury, but he may be ready to return Thursday, when Tampa Bay hosts the Nashville Predators. Labrie and Tyrell were healthy scratches. ... The Islanders play the New York Rangers at Madison Square Garden on Friday.