TORONTO (AP) — Something has changed in the New York Islanders' approach, and the positives are showing on the ice — especially away from home.
Frans Nielsen, Calvin De Haan and Cal Clutterbuck scored third-period goals to lead the Islanders past the Toronto Maple leafs 5-3 on Tuesday night.
New York has won five consecutive road games and six of seven.
"Early on, I don't know if it was nerves or a lack of poise or confidence," Islanders coach Jack Capuano said. "But now we're just playing with an attitude, playing with an edge, playing with confidence and doing the right things to give us a chance."
New York (16-22-7) began a six-game road trip with their second win in two nights with backup Kevin Poulin in goal. Poulin relieved injured starter Evgeni Nabokov on Monday and backstopped the Islanders' 7-3 win over Dallas.
Poulin made 23 saves against the Maple Leafs.
It was another frustrating loss for Toronto (21-18-5), which outshot the Islanders 26-25 in its first game since being beaten 7-1 at home by the New York Rangers on Saturday night. That snapped a three-game winning streak.
The Maple Leafs got within 4-3 when Nazem Kadri's shot deflected in off Joffrey Lupul with 3:05 left for his 13th goal.
Nielsen's power-play goal, his 16th of the season, broke a 2-2 tie at 3:41 while Lupul served a goalie interference penalty. De Haan scored his first NHL goal when his slap shot from outside the blue line hit Toronto defenseman Dion Phaneuf's stick and bounded past goalie Jonathan Bernier, who wasn't sharp in his sixth straight start.
Bernier got the start despite allowing five goals on 32 shots against the Rangers. He wasn't surprised that coach Randy Carlyle let him finish this game instead of replacing him with James Reimer for a second consecutive game.
"Why would I get pulled?" Bernier said when asked if he appreciated Carlyle's decision to leave him in.
Carlyle wasn't about to blame his Bernier for Toronto's second straight disappointing loss following three consecutive wins.
"You could say it wasn't one of his better nights, that's for sure," Carlyle said. "We've called upon him too many times this year in a lot of situations.
"We did some good things, but it just seemed like we were climbing a mountain. Every time we got things going and got back even we couldn't push it over the mountain. I thought we played passive. We were afraid to make a mistake versus being aggressive and going after it."
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