BOSTON (AP) — Former Bruins backup Chad Johnson stopped 30 shots, and Kyle Okposo scored the go-ahead goal in the second period to help the New York Islanders snap a two-game losing streak with a 3-2 victory over the Boston Bruins on Thursday night.
The Bruins played the last 50 minutes without captain and No. 1 defenseman Zdeno Chara, who left in the first period with an undisclosed injury.
Frans Nielsen and Cal Clutterbuck also scored for the Islanders.
Milan Lucic and Chris Kelly scored for Boston. Niklas Svedberg, making his third start as Vezina Trophy-winner Tuukka Rask got the night off, made 35 saves.
The Bruins played the Canadian national anthem and observed a moment of silence in memory of the soldier who was killed at the war memorial in Ottawa on Wednesday.
The Bruins also played a highlight video for former defenseman Johnny Boychuk, who was traded to the Islanders on the eve of the season. He belatedly realized the cheering was for him, flashed a smile, and finally took off his glove and waved to the crowd.
Chara had a collision with Islanders captain John Tavares midway through the first, then played one more shift that ended with 8:04 remaining in the period. There was no outward indication of an injury at that time.
The team didn’t elaborate on why Chara didn’t return to the bench at the start of the second period except to confirm that it was an injury.
The 6-foot-9 Slovakian, a third-round pick of the Islanders in 1996, is Boston’s No. 1 defenseman and spends more time on the ice than any other Bruins player. He has two goals and an assist in nine games this season.
The Islanders had a goal waved off in the first few minutes for goalie interference, but that barely slowed them down. They made it 1-0 six minutes into the game when Nielsen got to a puck in the crease and made a one-handed reach with his stick to tip it in.
Lucic crashed the net for his first goal of the season to make it 1-1 near the end of the first, then Okposo made it 2-1 just 90 seconds into the second period.
Clutterbuck gave New York a 3-1 lead midway through the second before the Bruins mounted sustained pressure in the Islanders’ zone in the third and cut the deficit to one on Kelly’s rebound with 10:11 remaining.
NOTES: Tavares entered the night tied for the NHL scoring lead with three goals and seven assists. … The Islanders are 4-1 against the Bruins in their last five games. … Seth Griffith assisted on Lucic’s goal one game after earning his first NHL point with a goal against San Jose. … Islanders LW Josh Bailey left the game with a hand injury after the second period and didn’t return.
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