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Isles Fall Apart, Tie Flyers


Philadelphia captain Eric Lindros found himself in the right place at the right time Saturday, helping the Flyers to avoid matching their longest losing streak ever.

Lindros scored with 50 seconds left to climax a frantic rally from a three-goal deficit in the final 3:06 of regulation, giving the struggling Flyers a 3-3 tie Saturday with the New York Islanders.

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  • Lindros got his 37th goal when he slipped the puck past goaltender Tommy Salo during a wild scramble in front of the net. It was allowed to stand after a tape review, and the Flyers stopped a five-game losing streak.

    "I just tried to stuff it in," Lindros said of the tying goal. "I saw it pop out and saw it was still alive in the crease. I got my stick down and took a quick swat at it."

    Dave Babych and Valeri Zelepukin also scored for Philadelphia.

    "Everybody on the bench was screaming that we shouldn't die," Lindros said. "We knew that we could something out of this if we just kept coming at them."

    Babych started the comeback when he scored his first goal this season, taking a centering pass from Daniel McGillis at 16:54. Zelepukin burst through the slot and beat Salo high to the stick side 1:06 later to make it 3-2.

    Mark Lawrence had a goal and an assist, and Zigmund alffy and Bryan Smolinski also scored for the Islanders.

    "Sure, this is very disappointing," New York coach Bill Stewart said. "Yeah, I'm mad, there's no question about it. But we couldn't have taken a warm-up with these guys five weeks ago. We had some young people out on the ice and certainly they will grow from it."

    The Flyers managed only one shot in the first 15:26 of the second period, when they matched their season-low of three. They had not scored a goal in 147 minutes, 5 seconds before the dramatic comeback.

    "It looked like we were never going to score again," Philadelphia coach Roger Neilson said. "It was a great comeback. Hopefully that will spark us."

    The Islanders, who came in tied for the worst road power-play record in the NHL - 9.4 percent - took advantage of a too-many-men-on-the-ice penalty against the Flyers to take a 1-0 lead at 1:53 of the second period. Palffy scored, beating John Vanbiesbrouck on the rebound of a shot by Robert Reichel .

    Lawrence made it 2-0 with another rebound goal at 10:02 of the third period. Smolinski scored 2:58 later when he beat Vanbiesbrouck high to the glove side from the slot following a turnover by Philadelphia's Karl Dykhuis .

    Palffy said the Flyers' third period comeback left him speechless.

    "It was a bad break, I don't know what to say," he said. "It can happen. We have to stay positive because we played two periods good."

    Eric Desjardins , the Flyers' top defenseman, missed the game with stomach flu. He is tied for second in the NHL among defensemen with 44 points.

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