National Hockey League
Dallas 5, NY Islanders 2
When: 7:00 PM ET, Wednesday, December 13, 2017
Where: Barclays Center, Brooklyn, New York
Referees: Trevor Hanson, Eric Furlatt
Linesmen: Scott Driscoll, Matt MacPherson
Attendance: 10316

NEW YORK -- As the final seconds ticked off the clock Wednesday night, Dallas Stars goalie Kari Lehtonen smiled behind his mask and allowed himself to soak in the accomplishment of joining a select NHL fraternity.

Lehtonen became the 33rd goalie in NHL history to record 300 career wins Wednesday night, when he carried a shutout into the third period and recorded 32 saves as the Stars cruised past the New York Islanders 5-2 at Barclays Center.

"Last minute, little smile, I had a little smile going on," Lehtonen said. "Just enjoying the moment. It was cool."

The grin surely grew as the buzzer sounded and Lehtonen was surrounded by teammates -- including fellow Stars goalie Ben Bishop, who came out from the seats directly behind the net, where the visiting backup goalie perches, and gave Lehtonen a hearty slap on the shoulder.

"It's awesome, we wanted to get that win for him," said Stars center Tyler Pitlick who scored two goals. "That's a pretty big accomplishment for him and his family as well."

Lehtonen was still savoring the moment a few minutes later when he wore most of his uniform and smiled throughout an interview session at his locker.

"It's nice to be up there, that's a big number for a goalie," Lehtonen said. "Never really thought I'd get that."

Lehtonen is the sixth active goalie to reach 300 wins and the second to do so in as many nights. Carolina Hurricanes netminder Cam Ward recorded his 300th victory Tuesday in a 3-2 shootout win over the Vegas Golden Knights.

Lehtonen and Ward were each selected in the first round of the 2002 draft. Lehtonen was picked second by the then-Atlanta Thrashers, for whom he played the first five seasons of his career. Ward was picked 25th by the Hurricanes.

"We came into the league at the same time, we're good friends," Lehtonen said. "Our last couple of years, we've been pretty much tied in games played and the wins. It was fun that we both got to 300."

The 624th appearance of Lehtonen's career -- Ward has played in 10 more games -- was notable long before the victory was secure. By playing Wednesday night, Lehtonen broke a tie with Miikka Kiprusoff for the most games played by a Finnish-born goaltender.

The Islanders appeared determined to make that the only milestone Lehtonen reached during a first period in which they peppered him with 15 shots.

After Pitlick opened the scoring 7:37 into the game, Lehtonen made a pair of impressive saves during a minute-long span. He sprawled to his right to make a pad save of a John Tavares shot and turned back a point-blank redirect by Anthony Beauvillier.

"It's a huge moment for him, but man, he was good tonight," Stars coach Ken Hitchcock said. "He had to earn it tonight. He had to work. This is one that you've got to look and say your goalie was your best player."

Remi Elie and Jamie Benn scored for the Stars in the second period to chase Islanders goalie Jaroslav Halak. Pitlick scored 21 seconds into the third for Dallas (18-13-1), which has won the first two games of a four-game Eastern Conference road trip.

Anders Lee ended Lehtonen's shutout bid 45 seconds after Pitlick's second goal before adding another goal with 3:32 left for the Islanders (17-11-3), who have lost four of five (1-3-1).

"(A) 5-2 loss, that five really stings," Lee said. "I think it felt a lot worse than it really was. They just capitalized on their opportunities. We did have some opportunities. You've got to give credit to Kari on the other side, he played a great game."

Halak made 16 saves.

"It's frustrating," Islanders coach Doug Weight said. "We're all frustrated. I'm sure (Halak) is, too. We want to get a roll together."

Thomas Greiss stopped six of the seven shots he faced in relief.

NOTES: The Stars outscored the Islanders 10-2 in sweeping the two-game season series. ... Stars RW Alexander Radulov was pulled with an undisclosed injury in the third period. Coach Ken Hitchcock said Radulov would be examined by team doctors Thursday morning. ... The Stars scratched LW Antoine Roussel (elbow) as well as C Jason Dickinson and D Jamie Oleksiak. ... The Islanders scratched C Shane Prince (conditioning stint) as well as C Alan Quine and D Dennis Seidenberg. ... Islanders D Johnny Boychuk returned to the ice after missing three games with a lower-body injury.
Top Game Performances
Dallas   NY Islanders
Jamie Benn 3 Points Anders Lee 2
Tyler Pitlick 2 Goals Anders Lee 2
Jamie Benn 2 Assists Josh Bailey 2
N/A Power Play Goals Anders Lee 1
N/A Short Handed Goals N/A
Kari Lehtonen .941 Save Percentage Thomas Greiss .857
Kari Lehtonen 32 Saves Jaroslav Halak 16
Team Stats Summary
Team Shots Goals Power Play Penalty Kill Penalty Mins Face Offs Won
Dallas 27 5 0-1 1-2 6 24
NY Islanders 34 2 1-2 1-1 4 34
Upcoming Games
  • NY Islanders will play their next game on the road against Columbus. The Islanders have a W/L % of .444 after a win and .692 after a loss.
  • Dallas will play their next game on the road against New Jersey. The Stars have a W/L % of .588 after a win and .533 after a loss.