ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) Frederick Gaudreau scored in the shootout to lift the Minnesota Wild to a 2-1 win over the New York Islanders on Tuesday night.
Filip Gustavsson made 39 saves and stopped two shots in the shootout for Minnesota, which has won six of seven and has a season-high, seven-game point streak. Ryan Reaves scored for the first time as a member of the Wild, who moved three points ahead of Winnipeg for third in the Central Division.
“The two groups play the same, play hard, big strong teams, physicality, not a lot of room out there,” Minnesota coach Dean Evason said of the matchup with the Islanders. “Yeah, happy with the way we stuck to playing the way that we play. We didn’t deviate and they didn’t.”
Josh Bailey scored and Ilya Sorokin stopped 30 shots for New York, which had won four of six.
“You come on a road trip like this against two really good teams, you’ll take three out of four any day,” Bailey said. “I think the second point was right there for us. A bit of a coin flip when you get to the shootout but all in all, a pretty solid road trip.”
On a day when both teams made trades, they got scoring from their fourth lines.
Bailey opened the scoring 14:15 into the first from in front of the net. Scott Mayfield’s initial shot from the point was stopped but the puck bounced to Bailey, who knocked it into an open net for his first goal in 24 games.
Minnesota answered less than four minutes later with Reaves scoring for the first time since last April 27 when he was with the New York Rangers. The enforcer, who came to the Wild in a November trade, also got into a fight with Islanders forward Ross Johnston just 2:06 into the game.
It wasn’t just Reaves and Johnston trying to provide a spark.
Minnesota general manager Bill Guerin made two trades to add depth to the forward lines. He acquired Marcus Johansson from Washington for a 2024 third-round draft choice and later added Gustav Nyquist from Columbus for a 2023 fifth-round selection.
“These two players, I think, are what we were missing, what we needed,” Guerin said before the game. “And that is, they’re highly skilled guys, excellent skaters. I think they’re going to provide us with just some, that natural ability out there.”
Islanders president of hockey operations Lou Lamoriello tried to boost New York’s playoff chances, giving a 2024 third-round draft pick to Toronto for forward Pierre Engvall.
New York stayed one point ahead of Pittsburgh for the top wild card spot in the Eastern Conference.
“I think their goalie played a good game,” New York coach Lane Lambert said. “I think our goalie played a good game when he had to. I mean, our team, that was, again, one of our more complete games. There’s nothing that I’m going to say bad about our team tonight.”
Gaudreau, who has 11 goals in regulation and overtime this season, has six goals in 10 shootout attempts and Minnesota is 7-3 in shootouts.
“It’s always a little bit of pressure, but it is what it is,” Gaudreau said. “You just have to focus on trying to put the puck in the net.”
The Islanders are 0-5 in shootouts this season.
“Guys got to find a way to score,” Lambert said. “It’s them and the goalie. They’ve got to find a way to score, that’s all there is to it.”
Islanders: Host Detroit on Saturday.
Wild: At Vancouver on Thursday.
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