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Sunday, October 23, 2011

The Skinny: Florida 4, Isles 2

"The Skinny"

By Eric Hornick
Game 6
Florida 4, Isles 2
Tim Kennedy converted a pass from Shawn Matthias 4:00 into the third period to break a 2-2 tie and rookie netminder Jacob Markstrom survived a late Islander push as the Florida Panthers defeated the Islanders 4-2 before 15,411 at the Bank Atlantic Center.  

Streit Strikes First
The Panthers announced a trade just before the game, sending David Booth to Vancouver in a multi-player deal. Perhaps Florida was thinking about that early, as the Isles drew a penalty in the first minute and Mark Streit converted it for his first goal since March 30, 2010 (against the Rangers) just 61 seconds into play. 

Stopping Kopecky
Tomas Kopecky was awarded a penalty shot at 2:39 of the first when he was hooked by Andrew McDonald, but he was stopped by Evgeni Nabakov.  It was the third Panthers penalty shot against the Isles in franchise history, and the Isles have stopped all three.   Kris Vesteeg, however would tie the game with just over five minutes remaining in the first period to end a 137:52 scoreless streak for Florida.

One For Each
The teams traded goals 53 seconds apart in the second period.  After Matt Bradley tallied for Florida, John Tavares tipped home a Mark Streit shot on the power play (extending Streit's assist streak to three games).  It was Tavares' 6th goal of the season. 

Enter Markstrom
With Jose Theodore experiencing cramps, Jacob Markstrom was inserted into the Florida goal for the third period.  All Markstrom did was steal the game.  Florida gained a 3-2 lead on a Tim Kennedy goal but the Islanders then threw everything at Markstrom, tallying 18 shots (11 of which came on three power plays, including a 43-second 5-on-3) but they could not get even.    When Shawn Matthias came out of the penalty box, he hit the empty net with 25 seconds to play for the final margin. 4-2 Final.

Home and Road
The Islanders drop to 3-3-0 overall and 0-2-0 on the road.  It's the first time since 2006-07 that the Isles have lost their first two road games of the season in regulation.
The Panthers improve to 4-3-0; they are 2-1-0 at home.

In the Nets
Evgeni Nabakov made 29 saves but drops to 1-1-0 on the season.
Jose Theodore stopped eight of ten over the first two periods before Markstrom came on to stone the Isles in the third.  For his efforts, and his first NHL win, Markstrom was named the First Star of the Game.

Power Plays
The Islanders were 2-5 on the power play while the Panthers were 0-2.   The Isles are now 5-25 on the power play and 22-24 on the penalty kill this season.  

They Tweeted It 
@FlaPanthers: Dineen: @j_markstrom started the third after Theodore started being bothered by the 'core' part of his body. Precautionary.

Leading Ice Men
Mark Streit led the Isles with 25:03 – it's the most any Islander has played in a game so far this season; Brian Campbell led Florida with 26:13.

Fast Start
John Tavares now has ten points (6-4-10), all in the last four games.  He has a point on 10 of the last 12 Islander goals and on 10 of their 14 goals this season.  Tavares led the Isles with 7 shots tonight, including six in the third period.  All seven of his shots were on the power play.

Penalty Shot Stats
Kopecky attempted the 46th penalty shot against the Isles in their history.  Isles goaltenders have now stopped 32 of the 46, including the last four.  It was the first penalty shot in an Islander game this season.
Nabokov has now stopped 11 of 15 penalty shots in his career (including seven of the last eight).

Countdown to 10K
The Isles scored two goals in this game and now have scored 9,927 goals in their history (including 39 shootout winners), leaving the club 73 shy of 10,000.

In the Circle
The Islanders won 36 of 65 (55%) face-offs.   Josh Bailey won 6 of 9.  It's the first time this season that the Isles have won over 50% of the face-offs.

Missing Men
With Brian Rolston attending to the birth of his fourth child, Blake Comeau (0 shots, 3 hits) returned to the line-up for the first time in three games. Milan Jurcina and Rick DiPietro were scratched.  The Isles have three players on injured reserve: Nino Niederreiter, Rhett Rakhshani and Mark Katic. 

Matt Moulson, the Isles' reigning ironman, has played in all 170 games since joining the team last season. Travis Hamonic has now played 68 NHL games (all consecutive); he has the longest consecutive game streak on defense for the Isles.   

Season Series Stats
The Panthers lead the season series two games to none (four points to zero).   The teams will next meet on February 12th at the Coliseum.  The Islanders are 1-8-1 in their last ten trips to Sunrise and have not won in regulation there since 2006.

Happy Anniversary
23 years ago tonight: October 22, 1988.   Joe Sakic had a hat trick in his first visit to the Coliseum but the Islanders pounded the Quebec Nordiques 7-3.  Derek King had a goal and three assists for the Isles, who have not won on October 22nd since then.

Overall the Islanders are now 3-8-2 on this date, including six straight losses. 

On The Farm
Bridgeport is 3-4-0-0 after splitting a weekend pair of games with the St. John's Ice Caps.  Justin DiBenedetto leads the team in scoring (7-0-7) while captain Jeremy Colliton, David Ullstrom and rookie Casey Cizikas each have five points.  The Sound Tigers are off until Friday, when they begin a weekend pair of home games.

On the Air
All remaining Islander games this month will air on the club's normal TV home: MSG+.

Up Next
[MSG+ (Islanders pre-game at 6:30pm), WRHU(88.7FM)]
The Islanders return home on Tuesday to begin a home-and-home series with the Pittsburgh Penguins.  Despite playing seven games without Evgeni Malkin and all ten games without Sidney Crosby, the Penguins are off to a 6-2-2 start and lead the Atlantic Division by 5 points (in part because they have played three more games than anyone else in the divison.).  The teams engaged in some memorable games last season, and the Isles have had success over Pittsburgh in recent years on home ice, earning at least one point in each of the last seven games against the Pens at the Coliseum (4-0-3).

Eric Hornick has been the statistician on Islander home game telecasts since 1982. Information contained in "The Skinny" has been gathered from various sources.  Follow Eric @ehornick on Twitter.
Forever1940 is the nom de plume of Eric Hornick, statistician on Islander home telecasts since 1982. Visit my blog: NYISkinny.com and follow me on Twitter @ehornick


Anonymous said...

"Matt Moulson, the Isles' reigning ironman, has played in all 170 games since joining the team last season."

You mean since he joined the team two seasons ago since 170 games is more than 2 seasons. :-)

Anonymous said...

Thanks, Eric!