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The Skinny: Isles 4, New Jersey 1 - Isles clinch a Playoff Spot!

"The Skinny" By Eric Hornick Game 81 Isles 4, New Jersey 1    They're in! Jean-Gabriel Pageau and Kyle Palmieri scored goals 4...

Wednesday, April 01, 2009

Stat Trick: Capitals 5, Isles 3

The Isles have clinched a top-4 draft pick (based on a top-3 lottery slot) with their loss and Atlanta's win. The Isles can finish ahead of only Tampa Bay and Colorado. On to the trick:

1. Mike Green scored two third period power play goals to lead the Caps to the victory. Green now has 30 goals, including 18 on the pp. Over the last 20 years, only one defensemen, Kevin Hatcher (34 in 1992-93) has scored over 30 goals. Green's 18 pp goals are a new Capital record, made even more impressive when you consider that he's played only 63 games this season.

2. Kyle Okposo and Frans Nielsen had given the Islanders a 2-0 lead (with each assisting on the other's goal) before Alex Ovechkin scored his league-leading 54th goal on a world class feed from Sergei Federov. Keith Aucoin (no relation to the former Isle) scored his first goal as a Cap midway through the 2nd period to knot the game.

3. Richard Park scored 2:12 into the third period to give the Isles the lead, setting the stage for Green's heroics. PArk now has thirteen goals on the season - his most ever as an Islander, and one shy of his career mark (14 for Minnesota in 2002-03). Green's two pp goals were scored 83 seconds apart; the winning goal coming seconds after an Islander goal was waved off due to a goalie-interference call on Tim Jackman. Nicklas Backstrom's empty-netter sealed the game.

... a few more

4. The Isles played without Mark Streit, who missed the game with a knee injury. Streit's replacement, Joe Callahan, had a giveaway that led to the Aucoin goal.

5.With Streit out, Radek Martinek played 27:17 -- the most ice-time he's ever had in a game that ended in regulation. (He played 17 seconds more against LA earlier this season, but that game was an OT affair. He's had several other OT games as well with more ice-time.)

6. The Caps won 45 of 69 face-offs. Josh Bailey had an atrocious night on draws, dropping 11 of 12.

7. The Caps outshot the Isles 43-27. Jose Thedore, who once scored into an empty net against the Isles, made 40 saves for Washington while Joey MacDonald had 22 saves for the Isles.

8. Joel Rechlicz had his 4th fight in five games, and now has 39 pm's in 11 NHL games, including 28 minutes in the last 4 games.

9. The Capitals sweep the season series 4 games to 0, and 8 points to 2 (one OT, one SO). It was the Isles' 42nd regulation loss of the season, only the 9th time in club history that they've lost that many. With two road games remaining, the Isles are guaranteed to have their fewest points on the road since 1995-96.

10. Up next: The Isles head home to face Montreal on the 2nd night of back-2-backs. The road team has won all three games in the series this season, but both Isles wins in Montreal were in extra time so the teams are even in points on the season 4-4. Including their come-from behind win in November, the Canadiens have own three straight on Long Island.

Forever1940 is the nom de plume of Eric Hornick, statistician on Islander home telecasts since 1982.

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