NHL scores: Tavares leads Islanders; Bobrovsky returns for Blue Jackets

Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

John Tavares had a five-point night, including a hat trick, in the Islanders' blowout win over the Stars, while Sergei Bobrovsky was back in the lineup and shining for the Columbus Blue Jackets.

The New York Islanders lost starting goaltender Evgeni Nabokov to a lower body injury on Monday night, and they handled it in the best possible way: By scoring seven goals for the backup.

John Tavares led the way for New York with a hat trick and his second career five-point game in a dominating win over the Dallas Stars. Stars coach Lindy Ruff called it one of the worst games his team has played all season, and it's not hard to disagree with that assessment. The Islanders were all over Dallas all night and spent most of the game controlling play in the Stars' end of the ice.

Tavares was particularly strong for New York and was more than Dallas could handle. Brock Nelson also had a big game for New York, while Ryan Strome scored his first career goal in the win.

Elsewhere, the Blue Jackets welcomed their starting goalie, reigning Vezina Trophy winner Sergei Bobrovsky, back to the lineup in their 4-3 shootout win over the Rangers. Bobrovsky was outstanding for the Blue Jackets, stopping 40 of the 43 shots he faced through overtime and regulation and then made a stunning glove save on Rangers forward Rick Nash in the shootout.

All the NHL Scores

Islanders 7, Stars 3

Blue Jackets 4, Rangers 4

Canadiens 2, Panthers 1

Flames 4, Avalanche 3

Five Questions

On Monday we asked you five burning questions about the days games. These are your cool, soothing answers.

1. How will Sergei Bobrovsky perform in his return?

He was great, and don't let the three goals against fool you into thinking that he wasn't. The Rangers were all over Columbus early in the game and Bobrovsky was there to bail his teammates out and keep them in the game. New York finally broke through with a pair of goals in the third period to tie the game and force overtime, but Bobrovsky was a wall for Columbus in the shootout. It was probably one of the best games he's played all season.

2. Will the Calgary Flames end their four-game losing streak?

They did. They didn't create a ton of chances in Colorado, but they were able to take advantage of their limited opportunities and beat Avalanche goalie Jean-Sebastien Giguere on four of their 19 shots in a 4-3 win. Michael Cammalleri scored the game-winner on a power play with less than four minutes to play in regulation.

3. Will Kyle Okposo play against the Dallas Stars?

He did not. Okposo's wife gave birth to a child and the Islanders forward was with her for their big day. It didn't have any noticeable impact on the Islanders as they scored seven goals against the Stars. A great day for everybody.

4. Will the Montreal Canadiens defeat the Florida Panthers?

After losing the first two games against Florida this season, the Canadiens were finally able to get the better of the Panthers in this one by riding a strong Carey Price performance to a 2-1 win. David Desharnais and Brian Gionta provided the offense for Montreal.

5. How will Carey Price perform?

He was great and seemed to snap out of his recent slump. Goalies run hot and cold and their seasons are always full of peaks and valleys. Entering play on Monday, Price had allowed four or more goals in each of his past three games. On Monday, he limited the Panthers to just one goal on 27 shots.

Impact Moment

The one play or moment from Monday that is going to be making headlines over the next couple of days.

Sergei Bobrovsky was back in net for the Columbus Blue Jackets and excelled in their 4-3 shootout win. Is it possible that he could have another huge second half run in him like last season to bring the Blue Jackets back into the playoff race? After their win on Monday, Columbus is just four points back of a playoff spot in the wide open Metropolitan Division, and none of the teams fighting for the two playoff spots after Pittsburgh (Washington, Philadelphia, Carolina, New Jersey, New York Rangers) seem to be doing anything to separate themselves from the pack. They're still in it, and they not only have Nathan Horton back in their lineup, now they have their goalie back.

Stat of the Night

Henrik Lundqvist allowed three goals for the 11th time in his past 12 appearances for the New York Rangers. Last season he allowed three goals just 14 times all season.

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