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The Skinny: Carolina 5, Isles 3 (Carolina leads series 2-0)

"The Skinny" By Eric Hornick Eastern Conference Round 1, Game 2 Carolina 5, Isles 3 Carolina Leads Series 2-0 Sebastian Aho and Jo...

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Stat Trick: Devils 4, Isles 2

Bryce Salvador scored with 6:49 to play in regulation as the Devils overcame a second period in which they were outshot 14-1 to defeat the Islanders 4-2 at the Coliseum.  On to the trick:

1. For the first time in four meetings this season, New Jersey scored first, as Jamie Langenbrunner scored his 14th goal 5:52 into play.  The Devils dominated play throughout most of the first period, outshooting the Isles 13-5. 

2.  The Isles earned a power play early in the second period and managed four shots on goal.  Momentum continued in the Isles favor and at 9:15 of the period, Colin White received a major penalty and game misconduct for boarding.  White had received only four minor penalties in 49 previous games this season.  Kyle Okposo and Jack Hillen both converted on the ensuing power play as the Isles scored twice on the power play for only the second time in 25 home games this season.  The power play actually extended 32 seconds beyond the five minute mark as for the second time in three weeks an opponent did not have a player in the penalty box when a major penalty expired. 

3. The Isles held New Jersey without a second period shot until the 19:28 mark, when Zach Parise scored on New Jersey's only shot of the session.  Parise would add an empty-netter in the third, giving him 16 goals in 34 games against the Isles.  Salvador's winner was his fourth goal in 15 games against the Islanders; he has only 18 goals in 563 games against the rest of the NHL.  It was also the first goal by a Devil defensemen in 2010.

...a few more...

4.  The loss ended the Islanders' six-game home winning streak; they have not won seven straight at home since 2003. 

5. Marty Brodeur made 20 saves for his 588th career win.  He is now 43-24-6 in his career against the Isles.  Rick DiPietro made 24 saves (none in the second period) as he fell to 2-2 in his comeback attempt.

6.  The one Devil shot in the second period tied the Islander club record for fewest shots allowed, done nine times previously, most recently in 2006 against Carolina.  The Isles had only three shots in the third period, with only one (off the stick of Frans Nielsen from his own zone) coming before Parise's empty-netter.

7.  It was a big night for the Devils' top line.  Langenbrunner had a goal and two assists; Parise had two goals, and Travis Zajac assisted on all three of his linemates' goals.

8. In addition to scoring the Isles' sixth goal by a defensemen in the last six games, Hillen also led the Isles in ice-time (25:44) and blocked nine shots.

9.  The Devils improve to a remarkable 10-1-0 on the back-end of back-to-backs.

10. The Devils lead the season series three games to one (and six points to two).  The win breaks a three game New Jersey losing streak on Long Island.  The teams will meet on March 13th at the Coliseum and on the final weekend of the season in New Jersey.
Up next:  Alexander Ovechkin and the Capitals make their final visit of the (regular) season to the Coliseum on Tuesday.  All three games this season, and seven of the last nine meetings, between the teams have been decided in extra time.  The Isles are 3-2-4 in those nine games, while the Caps are 6-0-3.  The Isles have not beaten Washington in regulation since Bill Guerin's hat trick led the Isles to victory on October 18, 2007.Each team owns an overtime victory this season  (Brooks Laich and Mark Streit scoring the goals) with the Caps also winning an 11-round shootout (longest in Islander history).

Forever1940 is the nom de plume of Eric Hornick, statistician on Islander home telecasts since 1982. Visit my blog: forever1940.blogspot.com and follow me on Twitter @ehornick

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