WINNIPEG – A breakaway goal may have put him in the highlight reels, but Evander Kane was happy with his tap-in overtime winner on Sunday.
Kane’s goal handed the Jets a 5-4 victory over the New York Islanders on Sunday as Winnipeg won its third straight game.
Kane’s goal at 1:59 of overtime came off a rebound from a long Olli Jokinen shot and sealed a win that seem out of reach when the Jets were down 4-2 midway through the third period.
“I knew Olli had (the puck) and there was nobody in my way and I was actually looking for the breakaway, but Olli kept it,” said Kane, who also had an assist. “I knew he would shoot it when I saw the big windup.
“He has a really hard shot.”
Goals 65 seconds apart by Dustin Byfuglien and Alexander Burmistrov set up the extra period for Winnipeg (3-1-1). Alexei Ponikarovsky and Bryan Little also scored.
Kane thought Jokinen would bury the shot behind Islanders (2-2-1) goalie Evgeni Nabokov, but the puck rolled along the goal line and he poked it over.
The goal was reviewed, but Kane had no doubt it counted.
“It was just like watching a football game. It just has to break the plane,” he said.
Byfuglien’s goal on the power play at 12:59 of the third period marked the first time this season the Islanders had let in a power-play goal in 17 short-handed situations.
John Tavares had a goal and two assists for the Islanders. David Ullstrom, Matt Moulson and Mark Streit also scored and Frans Nielsen had a pair of assists.
Jets backup goalie Al Montoya got his first start of the season against his former Islanders teammates and stopped 21 shots. He signed as a free agent with Winnipeg last July.
He played two seasons with the Islanders, but got into only 31 games last season because of a concussion suffered after a December hit by now-teammate Kane.
Nabokov faced 35 shots.
“No, it wasn’t a Picasso, that’s for sure,” Jets head coach Claude Noel said of his team’s play. “But, you know, you’re going to have those nights and I think what you have to do is you kind of have to try to get a grip on things.
“It wasn’t ideally what we would have liked, but I did like that we had some time left in the game and we didn’t sit and dwell on the negative and sit and beat ourselves up.”
The game was tied 1-1 after the first period and 2-1 for Winnipeg after two before New York scored three straight goals.
Islanders head coach Jack Capuano knew the Jets weren’t out of it after Winnipeg went down 2-0 in the first period against Pittsburgh last Friday and pulled out a 4-2 win.
“After watching the Pittsburgh game, we knew they were going to come,” Capuano said. “They got good speed, they got really good transition with their (defence), and they beat us up the ice in the first period.
“We could have been down a lot more than a goal. “
A turnover by the Jets led to New York’s first goal, a wrist shot Ullstrom put past Montoya at 2:34 of the opening period. Ullstrom is on a four-game points streak with two goals and a pair of assists.
“He played well tonight,” Ullstrom said of Montoya. “He’s a good goalie and good guy.”
Winnipeg was 1 for 4 on the power play through regulation and the Islanders were 1 for 2.