Sunday, November 06, 2011

The Skinny: Isles 5, Washington 3

"The Skinny"
 By Eric Hornick

Game 11
Isles 5, Washington 3

New linemates PA Parenteau and Frans Nielsen each scored a goal and added two assists as the Islandersrallied from a 2-0 deficit for a 5-3 win over the Washington Capitals before 14,812
at the Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum.   The loss ends the Isles' winless streak at six games (0-4-2).

Caps Score Twice in the First
The Capitals grabbed a 2-0 lead in the first period.  Joel Ward beat Rick DiPietro at 5:24 of the first period and Alex Ovechkin made it a 2-goal deficit with his 307th career goal, coming in a 4-on-4 situation. The Isles were outshot 12-11 in the opening session.

Another Solid Second
The Islanders dominated thesecond period for the second straight game but the difference was in this game, they were able to score two goals and tie the game.  Frans Nielsen ended the club's scoreless
streak at 111:20 when he beat Tomas Vokoun for his 3rd goal of the season at 1:41 of the second.  Brian Rolston then tied the game with his first goal as an Islander and 336th career goal, coming at 16:55.  The Isles outshot Washington 15-7 and have outshot their opponents 34-13 over the last
two games in the middle session.

Matt Martin Gives the Isles the Lead
Matt Martin played less time than any other Islander (9:16) but it was his goal off
a rebound of a Steve Staios shot that gave the Isles the lead at 6:28 of the
third. Josh Bailey earned an assist for his first point of the season The Caps
would re-tie the game less than three minutes later as Brooks Laich tallied a
power play goal.

PA Wins It
The Islanders hadn't beaten Washington in regulation in over four years (10/18/2007) and for 58 minutes it looked like this game would follow the pattern. However, Vokoun could not control a blast from the point from former Capital Milan Jurcina and Parenteau swooped in at 18:14 for the winning
goal.  The Capitals pulled Vokoun in search of the tying goal but John Tavares hit the empty-net from center ice to give the Isles their third goal of the period after scoring only four goals in their first ten third periods this season.  5-3 Final.

Home and Road
The Islanders are 4-5-2 overall and 4-3-1 at home.  The win breaks a three-game home winless streak (0-2-1).  With nine points in the first eight home games, the Isles are 3 points ahead of last season's pace; with 10 points in 11 games, the Isles are even with last season's pace.
The Caps are 9-3-0 overall and 3-3-0 on the road.  They have lost three of the last four road games (1-3-0).

Attendance Soaring
The Islanders have attracted 100,897 for their eight home games this season (12,612).  The average attendance is up 17.2% compared to this point last season and 14.0% compared to last season's final average.

In the Nets
Rick DiPietro appeared in his fourth straight game for the first time in 11 months and made 25 saves to improve his record to 1-1-2.  DiPietro, who recorded his first win since March 19th in Florida, is 10-4-1 in his career against Washington.  It was his first win vs. Washington since 2007-08 when he beat the Caps three times:once in regulation, once in overtime and once in a shootout.

Tomas Vokoun made 30 saves for Washington.

Power Plays
The Islanders were 0-2 on the power play while the Caps were 1-2.   The Isles are now 7-38 on the power play and 32-38 on the penalty kill this season. They are 2-13 in the last four games on the power play and 8-12 in the same stretch on the penalty kill.

They Tweeted It 
@BComptonNHL: Best period for the #Isles in quite some time. 2-2 after 40 minutes.  (Note to
Bryan- the third wasn't too bad, either!)

Head of the Class
Tavares' empty-netter gives him 133 career points, one more than fellow-2009 draft pick Matt Duchene.  No other player in that draft is anywhere close.  There have been 5 empty-net goals
in the first 11 Islander games (2 for and 3 against).  Tavares has scored 8 of the Islanders' 23
goals this season (34.8%), by far the highest percentage of a team's goals of any team in the NHL).

Four +3
The Isles had four players who were +3 tonight.  Nielsen, Parenteau and Rolston were all +3 as was Mark Eaton.  The last Islander to be +3 against Washington was Oleg Kvasha, who had a
3-assist, +3 game in Washington on October 13, 2005. It's the second time this season that both Parenteau and Eaton were at least +3; they also both did it on October 13, 2011 vs. Tampa Bay.

Coming From Behind
It's the Isles first win this season after allowing the opening goal (1-4-1) and after trailing in the
first intermission (also 1-4-1).  The Caps had been a perfect 4-0-0 in games they led after 20 minutes prior to the Isles' comeback.  It was the first time since March 11, 2011 vs Boston that the Isles have rallied from a 2-0 deficit to win.

Those Teams to the West Won Too
Both the Isles and Rangers recorded home victories tonight- it's the first since December 16, 2010 that both teams won at home on the same day.  The Devils also won at home tonight, marking the first time since February 28, 2009 that all three Metro Area teams won at home.

Leading Ice Men
Mark Streit led the Isles with 22:43.  John Carlson led all players with 24:09.

Holy Howe II
For the second straight game, a player had a goal, assist and major penalty as Parenteau was assessed a first period major for boarding.  It was the first major penalty of Parenteau's NHL career.  It's not a "Gordie Howe Hat Trick" because the major was not for fighting.  Evander Kane had a Gordie Howe Hat on Thursday for Vancouver.

103 to Go
The Isles have scored 9,897 goals in their history (excluding 39 shootout winners), leaving the club 103 shy of 10,000.

 23 in 11
The Isles have scored 23 goals in the first 11 games, matching the club record set in 1999-2000 for
fewest goals in the first 11 games.  The Isles have scored 16 goals in their four wins (4.00 per game) and seven goals in their other seven games (0-5-2; 1.00 per game).

Best D since the Lockout
The Isles have allowed only 28 goals (does not include 1 in a shootout) in 11 games (2.52 goals per
game).  It's the fewest goals that the Isles have allowed in the first 11 games since 2003-04, when they also allowed 28. It's the 10th time in their history that they have allowed 28 or fewer over the first 11.  The club record for Fewest Goals Allowed, First 10 Games is 22, set in 1974-75 and equaled in 1977-78.

In the Circle
The Islanders won 25 of 49 (51%) face-offs.   John Tavares won 12 of 18 (making it 23 of 38
in the last two games), while Brooks Laich won 8 of 12 for the Caps.

Missing Men
Mike Mottau and Evgeni Nabakov were scratched. Nino Niederreiter is in Bridgeport on a conditioning assignment and earned an assist in Bridgeport's win tonight.  The Isles have two players on injured reserve: Rhett Rakhshani and Mark Katic.  The Isles have lost 48 man-games to injury so far this season.

Ironmen
Matt Moulson, the Isles' reigning ironman, has played in all 175 games since joining the team. Travis Hamonic has now played 73 NHL games (all consecutive); he has the longest consecutive
game streak on defense for the Isles.

Season Series Stats
The Isles lead the season series one game to none (two points to none).   The series will continue in Washington on January 17th and February 28th before facing each other at the Coliseum on March 12th.  It was the Isles first win over Washington since October 30, 2009 (0-4-2) when a Mark Streit overtime goal was the difference and their first win in regulation over the Caps since October 18,
2007 (3-6-5) when a Bill Guerin hat trick was the difference. The Isles scored only five goals vs. Washington last season, losing each game by one goal.

Happy Anniversary
23 years ago tonight: November 5, 1988.  A year-and-a half after they combined to win the longest overtime game in Islander history, Kelly Hrudey and Pat LaFontaine did it to the Capitals again as LaFontaine's goal 10 seconds into overtime gave Hrudey the 34-save victory in the shortest overtime game in club history. 
Overall the Islanders are now 4-8-3 on this date, with tonight's win ending a 0-5-1 stretch dating back to that 1988 win.

On The Farm
Anders Nilsson made 27
saves to improve to 4-1-0 on the season and David Ullstrom had the winning goal
as the Sound Tigers beat Norfolk 3-2 at Harbor Yard on Saturday.   Bridgeport
is 6-4-1-0, including 3-0-1-0 on their five-game homestand, which concludes on
Sunday afternoon vs. St. John's.
 
Up Next
MONDAY, NOVEMBER 7TH ISLANDERS
AT BOSTON 7:00PM
[Versus (NHL Live at 6:30pm), WRHU(88.7FM)]
MSG Networks will televise
81 Islander games this season.  Game #82
is on Monday in Boston as the Isles will face the Stanley Cup Champion Bruins.  It will be the Isles first regular season trip to Boston to face the Stanley Cup Champion Bruins since January 18, 1973
when the Original Isles beat Boston 9-7 for the most significant win of their first season.
The Bruins won both games in Boston between the teams last season; the Isles split the two Coliseum games, including a 4-2 win over the Bruins on March 11th.

It will be the Isles' 72nd game in Boston; no Islander has ever recorded a hat trick in Beantown.

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

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