BOSTON – Struggling on the road and playing against the defending Stanley Cup champions, New York Islanders Coach Jack Capuano knew what most were likely thinking before this late-season matchup.

“If you look at the standings, a lot of people were probably not giving us a chance,” Capuano said after the Islanders beat the Bruins 3-2 on Saturday to snap a five-game road winless streak.

John Tavares tipped in Matt Moulson’s shot for the late tie-breaking goal with 4:39 left, and Evgeni Nabokov stopped 32 shots as New York, 0-4-1 in its previous five away games, completed a 1-2-1 trip.

“It’s always nice to come home and sleep in your own bed after a win,” Moulson said.

Josh Bailey and Moulson also had goals for the Islanders, who won for the second time in six games.

New York (27-29-9), which entered with the second-worst record in the Eastern Conference, had dropped the previous two meetings — both in November — to the Bruins. They lost 6-2 in Boston and 6-0 at home.

But Nabokov bounced back from allowing five goals on 29 shots in a 6-3 loss at Philadelphia on Thursday with a strong outing.

“It all started in the back with Nabby,” defenseman Andrew MacDonald said.

Tyler Seguin tied the game for Boston with his 22nd goal early in the third period. Milan Lucic also scored his 22nd, converting on a first-period power play.

The Bruins have dropped 5 of 8 and hold a three-point lead over Ottawa atop the Northeast Division. Boston has played three fewer games.

Tim Thomas took the loss in relief of injured starter Tuukka Rask, who left the game with an undisclosed injury midway through the second period. Thomas stopped 11 of 13 shots after Rask gave up one goal on 12 shots.

Rask got hurt when he kicked out his left pad to try to stop a shot that went wide. He dropped to the ice in pain and was helped off by two players holding his arms as he skated off the ice. Thomas was already expected to start today when the Bruins visit the New York Rangers.

Boston Coach Claude Julien said Rask wouldn’t make the trip, but elaborated little on the injury.

“It is what it is,” he said. “You want to be able to use two goaltenders in this stretch, but it’s not what it is.”

The Bruins will play nine games in the next 16 days.

“It’s obviously not great when you see him not able to get up after making an effort to make a save,” Lucic said. “He’s been a big part of our team this year.”

After the game, the Bruins recalled goalie Michael Hutchinson and forward Lane MacDermid from Providence of the AHL.

The Islanders will play their next three games against New Jersey, beginning today at home.

New York grabbed the late lead when Moulson fired a shot from the top of the right circle that was tipped by Tavares. The puck dipped and slid between Thomas’ pads.