The Canadiens and Islanders battled through 61 minutes and 50 seconds of scoreless hockey.
Then some determination – he was knocked down twice on the sequence – and clever playmaking by David Desharnais set the table for Max Pacioretty's 12th goal – and fourth game-winner – of the season.
Carey Price made 21 saves for his second shutout of the season and 21st of his career.
Evegni Nabokov stopped 24 of 25.
Max wins it
Just under two minutes into overtime, Max Pacioretty converts a pass by David Desharnais for the game's only goal.
Islanders goaltender Evgeni Nabokov had to be sharp on Tomas Plekanec, Andrei Markov and Lars Eller.
Shots were 6-5 Canadiens, 23-21 on the game.
The Islanders blew a 4-on-1.
Each team blew power-play chances.
Islanders had a 7-6 shot advantage.
Not a classic so far
Two minutes into the game, George Parros and Islanders' enforcer Eric Boulton dropped 'em in an absurd fight that ended with the refs ordering to Parros to the Canadiens' quiet room after he was KOed.
The game he left behind was equally quiet.
The Canadiens had an 11-9 shot advantage, but the closest thing to a goal was John Tavares hitting the post to Carey Price's left.
It can only get better.
The Canadiens have lost more than two in a row only once this season: the beginning of October, when they dropped games to Minnesota, Colorado, St. Louis and Ottawa.
The loss to the Blues was a Bell Centre Shootout. The Canadiens have not lost three straight in regulation ... to date.
The Islanders are 19 points behind the Canadiens in the Eastern Conference standings. They are coming off a dismal road trip in which they lost four of five to Western Conference opponents (and scored an improbable Shootout win in San Jose).
The home team is 1-7-2 in its last 10. The Islanders are seemingly ripe for the plucking by a Canadiens team trying to get back on the winning track.
Sometimes, however, the plucker becomes the pluckee.