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Penguins 4, Islanders 3


Penguins 4, Islanders 3: Sidney Crosby's goal with 76 seconds left in regulation - the 250th of his career - lifted host Pittsburgh to its third consecutive victory.

Chris Kunitz had two power-play goals and an assist and Evgeni Malkin added a goal and an assist as the Penguins sent New York to its seventh defeat in nine games and avenged a home loss to the Islanders on Oct. 25. Rookie Jeff Zatkoff turned aside 32 shots in his first start since Nov. 2.

Thomas Vanek scored twice in his return from a five-game injury absence for New York, which erased a pair of two-goal deficits before Crosby provided the late game-winner from in front on a feed from Pascal Dupuis. Kevin Poulin made 30 saves and stymied a flurry of solid scoring chances for the Islanders.

Kunitz staked the Penguins to a 2-0 lead with a pair of early power-play goals in the first eight minutes, finishing a highlight-reel passing play with Malkin and Crosby before burying a one-timer on a pass from James Neal (two assists). Vanek started the comeback at 1:46 of the second, beating Zatkoff stick side for his second goal since joining New York.

Malkin halted a career-long 15-game goal-scoring drought to restore the two-goal cushion at 6:25 but McDonald and Vanek scored 81 seconds apart to forge a tie entering the final 20 minutes. Vanek forced a turnover on the equalizer before sliding home a backhand off a scramble in front.

GAME NOTEBOOK: Kunitz was denied a natural hat trick when what would have been his third goal with 1:10 left in the first period was negated by a high-sticking penalty against Malkin. ... Vanek, in his seventh game with New York since he was acquired from Buffalo, had had first two-goal performance since scoring a pair against Pittsburgh on April 23. ... With Malkin registering his fourth multi-point effort in five games, the Penguins improved to 7-0-0 when he scores at least two points.