By Eric Hornick
Ottawa 6, Isles 4
Daniel Afredsson scored 32 seconds into play (the earliest goal in an Islander
game) and that was just the beginning. Ottawa also had a 4-goal second period,
built a 6-2 lead, and snapped their six-game winless streak (0-4-2) as they
defeated the Islanders 6-4 before 8,670 at the Nassau Veterans Memorial
Coliseum. The loss ended the Isles' home-ice point streak at 6 games (4-0-2).
After the Islanders allowed the opening goal for the 5th straight game and sixth
time in seven games on Alfredsson's early goal, the Isles got even on a Trevor
Gillies tip in at 7:23. However, Jesse Winchester gave the Sens the lead for
good at 9:50 of the first, chasing Kevin Poulin, who faced eight shots. It was
the first NHL career goal for Gillies, ending a 40-game streak; he is the 313th
player in Islander history to score a goal. It was Gillies' first goal anywhere
since scoring for the Bridgeport Sound Tigers on December 11, 2009.
Ottawa scored more times in a 7:14 span of the second span to take control of
the game. After Milan Michalek gave Ottawa a 3-1 lead with a shorthanded goal,
Blake Comeau got the Isles within one, scoring his 4th goal in five games, with
each team down a man. However, 20 seconds later, Chris Kelly responded with a
Senator tally. Nick Foligno and Zach Smith added tallies to give Ottawa a 6-2
lead after two periods.
Jurcina Tries to Help
Two shots from Milan Jurcina cut the deficit in half in the first 11 minutes of
the third. PA Parenteau deflected a Jurcina shot at 1:49 (his first goal in 6
games) to cut the lead to 6-3; Jurcina's blast beat Sens rookie Robin Lehner at
10:50 to make it 6-4. It was the Islanders' 100th goal of the season (one more
than Ottawa). However, the Isles could get no closer. 6-4 Final.
Home and Road
Ottawa improves to 17-21-6, 8-9-4 on the road. The Isles drop to 13-22-7,
including 7-8-4 at home. They are now 9-12-4 under Jack Capuano, including 8-4-2
in the last 14. The Isles are 0-2-1 in their last three.
In the Nets
Lehner made 20 saves to record his first career win. The 19 year old Lehner is
the first teenager to record an NHL win since Jonathan Bernier did so for Los
Angeles in 2007. He joins Bernier as the only teenagers since Jocelyn Thibault
(for Québec in 1993) to win his first NHL start. He is the youngest goalie in
Poulin makes 6 saves in the first and 11 saves in the third, allowing two
goals. In between, Nathan Lawson was beaten for four goals on 19 shots; as he
allowed Ottawa's fifth goal, he is charged with the loss (0-3-1). The Isles
have changed goalies three times in their last six games after not doing so in
the first 36 games.
It was the third time in the last 20 years that both teams started goaltenders
younger than 21 years old.
The Isles went 0-2 on the power play while Ottawa went 0-3. The Isles are 8-20
(40%) in their last seven games on the power play and have killed 19 of 20 over
the last seven games. The Isles allowed their 5th shorthanded goal (and 4th in
their last 17 games); they allowed only three all last season. The Sens are
20-20 on the penalty kill in the last five games.
In the Circle
The Isles won 42 of 66 (64%) face-offs. John Tavares won 15 of 21 and Rob
Schremp won 10 of 15 for the Isles.
Mike Mottau and Mark Eaton are out for the season. Mark Streit, Kyle Okposo,
Doug Weight, Trent Hunter, Frans Nielsen and Rick DiPietro remain out. Rhett
Rakhshani has been added to injured reserve after suffering a concussion; Dylan
Reese was the Isles' scratch. The Isles have now lost 261 man-games to injury.
Moulson Extends Streak
Matt Moulson, the Isles' reigning ironman, has played in all 124 games since
joining the team last season. Zenon Konopka is the only other Isle to have
played every game this season; his 54 game streak includes the final 12 games
last season for Tampa Bay. Travis Hamonic has now played 22 NHL games (all
consecutive); he has the longest consecutive game streak on defense for the
+5 for Gonchar
Sergei Gonchar came into the game -20, but was +5 tonight. He had had only one
multiple-positive rating this season (+2 against the Isles on November 4th). He
is the 6th player to go +5 this season. He is the first Senator to go +5 since
Alexei Kovalev last January 3rd and the first to do it against the Isles since
three Panthers were +5 or better on March 17, 2007. No opponent had been +5 at
the Coliseum since four Bruins all went +5 against the Isles on January 30,
1993. Jeremy Colliton, who turned 26 today, was -4 for the Isles.
Home Sweet Home
The Isles had earned points in six straight at home (4-0-2) since losing to
Atlanta on December 11th. It matched the longest single-season point streak
since they earned points in nine straight during the 2003-04 season. This was
the second game of a five-game homestand (0-1-1) and the second game of
stretches of 13-of-20 and 19-of-29 at home.
Breaking the Zeros
Brian Lee and Corey Locke each recorded their first point of the season. Lee
had gone 12 games this season without a point; Locke was making his season debut
with Ottawa; he had been held pointless in four prior NHL games.
The Sens recorded a season-high six goals. The six goals equals the most
allowed by the Isles at home this season.
Season Series Stats
The Sens lead the season series, two games to none and four points to zero.
Ottawa has outscored the Isles 10-5. The teams will meet again February 5th at
the Coliseum and ten days later in Ottawa.
4 years ago today (January 13, 2007): Miroslav Satan scored some memorable
goals for the Islanders, and one of them occurred against New Jersey on this
date in 2007. Satan scored with 7/10th of a second remaining in regulation to
send a game with New Jersey to overtime. Scott Gomez would score in overtime
to give New Jersey the win, but the last second point was crucial for the Isles,
who made the playoffs when they won the season-ending game in a shootout.
Overall, the Isles are 10-6-3 all-time on this date, including a Mike Bossy four
goal game against Pittsburgh in 1981 that gave Bossy 45 goals in 46 games (on
the way to 50 in 50).
Saturday, January 15- Buffalo @ Islanders 7:00pm
[MSG+ (Subway Islanders Game Night at 6:30), WRHU 88.7FM]
In the first-half of the season, the Isles faced every conference rival except
one: the Buffalo Sabres. Three of the Isles next five games are against
Buffalo, beginning on Saturday night at the Coliseum. The home team won all
four games last season, including one Islander victory in a shootout.
Belated congratulations to Blake Comeau. His goal and assist on Tuesday made
him the first player drafted by the Islanders to record 100 points in an
Islander uniform since Scott Lachance reached the mark during the 1998-99
season. (We erroneously credited him with only 99 points on Tuesday.)
Eric Hornick has been the statistician on Islander home game telecasts since
1982. Information contained in "The Skinny" has been gathered from various
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