ELMONT, – Jack Hughes almost single-handedly took care of the New York Islanders Friday night to give the New Jersey Devils a 5-4 overtime victory.
Hughes collected two goals and two assists to reach the 10-point plateau in just four games this season, in addition to getting the game-winning goal.
Midway through overtime, Hughes recovered the puck in the neutral zone and maneuvered at will between three Islanders players. Hughes then cut down the center of the ice in the opposing zone, before scoring with an excellent wrist shot.
Among other moments of his night, Jack assisted his brother Luke Hughes’ first goal of the season. Dougie Hamilton and Tyler Toffoli also scored in the victory for the Devils.
Despite doubles by Brock Nelson and Bo Horvat, the Islanders suffered their first loss of the season. They won their first two games against the Sabers and Coyotes.
In front of the Devils’ cage, Akira Schmid made 27 saves to get the win. On the other end of the ice, Ilya Sorokin gave up five chances on 38 shots.
The Islanders scored first with less than eight minutes left in the first period when Nelson tricked Schmid with a wrist shot that entered the zone.
The Devils, however, responded with two unanswered goals. Hamilton first tied the game late in the first period with a powerful slap shot, then Toffoli put the Devils in the driver’s seat with his first goal of the season. Jack Hughes collected his first assist on this goal.
However, Nelson took the attack of New York on his shoulders and turned everything back less than two minutes later with his second goal of the game, the result of a throw between the pads of Schmid.
The Hughes brothers then combined their efforts on the power play moments later, in the middle period. Jack found Luke on the blue line, then the defenseman scored his first goal of the season with a great slap shot to make it 3-2.
The Islanders tied the game again at 3-3 before the end of the second period thanks to Horvat, but Jack Hughes put New York back together early in the third period. On the power play, Hughes redirected a nice pass from Ondrej Palat into the back of the net to put the Devils in control and collect his third point of the game.
After Nelson’s double earlier in the night, Horvat matched his teammate at the end of the game to send it all to overtime. With the Islanders attacking with six players, Horvat slammed a loose puck into the mouth of the net to tie the game 4-4.
However, Hughes closed the door on the Islanders when he played in overtime.
The Islanders return to action on Saturday against the Sabres, while the Devils play their next game next Tuesday, against the Canadiens.