How do Andrew MacDonald, Ed Westfall, and with a bit of creative license Pat LaFontaine come together? It's in today edition of It Ha...
Friday, December 23, 2011
The Skinny: Rangers 4, Isles 2
By Eric Hornick
Rangers 4, Isles 2
Martin Biron made 24 saves to improve his career record against the Isles to 21-4-1 as the New York Rangers defeated the Islanders 4-2 in front of 18,200 at Madison Square Garden.The Isles are 5-2-1 in their last eight road games, but have now lost five straight at The Garden.
1st Period 14:53 NYR Brandon Dubinsky (2) Snap Shot - Assists: S. Bickel (2) & M. Biron (2)
18:27 NYR EN - John Mitchell (2) Wrist Shot - Assists: B. Dubinsky (13) & A. Stralman (3)
Gaborik has recorded eight 20-goal seasons in his career; he is on pace to score 51 goals, which is nine higher than his career best (42).He is 16-12-28 in 24 career games against the Islanders. Moulson and Tavares each extended their assist/point streaks to three games.When Parenteau scored to tie the game, all three members of the Isles' top line shared the scoring lead with 26 points.Moulson and Tavares finished the night with 27 points.Tavares now has 17 points (5-12-17) in 14 games against the Rangers.
The Isles outshot the Rangers 10-7 in the first period but the Ranger outshot the Isles 10-8 in the third period.Each team had eight shots in the second period.
The Streak Ends
The Islanders had scored first in each of their last seven road games but the streak ended on Brandon Dubinsky's goal.It was his first goal in 17 games.
Home and Road
The Islanders are 11-15-6 overall and are 5-7-3 on the road. Despite the loss, the Isles are 5-2-1 in their last eight road games and have earned 13 points on the road this season.It still matches their best road record through 15 games since they were 7-7-1 in the first 15 road games of 2006-07.
The Rangers are 20-8-4 overall and 9-3-2 at home. The Rangers have won three straight and are 5-2 in their last seven games.
In the Nets
Evgeni Nabokov made 21 saves but sees his record drop to 2-6-0. He is now 2-2-0 in his career at Madison Square Garden.
Martin Biron made 24 saves for the Rangers as he improved to 7-1-0 on the season.
The Islanders were 2-3 on the power play while the Rangers were 0-3.It was the first multiple power play goal for the Isles since December 6th against Tampa.Ironically, the Isles entered the game 1-22 on the power play since then while the Rangers had killed 21 of their last 22.The Isles are 5-16 on the power play against the Rangers this season.
The Isles have killed 31-36 (86.1%) over the last 11 games.They were shorthanded only four times on the road trip, and killed all four penalties.It's the second time this season that they have gone three games without allowing a power play goal (October 10-15).The Isles have killed all 11 Ranger power plays this season.
Captaining the Power Play
Mark Streit had two assists and is now 1-12-13 on the Islanders' 19 power play goals this season.Only three defensemen, led by Brian Campbell's 16, have been power play points than Streit.
Stuck at 295
Evgeni Nabokov has 295 career wins (27th all-time). He is one career win behind Ron Hextall and is five wins shy of becoming the 26th goalie in NHL history with 300 career wins.
They Said It
Frans Nielsen: "We made way too many mistakes and turnovers. We gave them some easy goals. It's not okay."
They Tweeted It
@NYP_Brooksie: "Biron start tonight marks end of Lundqvist's streak of 15 straight v NYI at MSG since Weekes got nod on 12/19/06 in 4-3 defeat."
On Gaborik's goal: "The faceoff goal was a turning point; it put them up by 2-1. We fought back, our power play was working and we did a lot of good things but we have to try to find a way to score some more goals."
Leading Ice Men
Andrew MacDonald and Travis Hamonic shared the lead for the Islanders with 23:50.Dan Girardi played 28:07 for the Rangers, mainly against the Tavares line.Tavares had only two lengthy periods of time in the entire game that he was on-ice and Girardi was not.
Will Giants-Jets be as Hard-Hitting as Isles-Rangers?
The Isles out-hit the Rangers 32-22; Hamonic had seven hits while Matt Martin, the NHL's hit leader, had five.
Each team scored once in the third period; the Isles have been outscored 9-3 in the third period over the last five games and have been outscored 38-18 overall in the third period (30-16 excluding empty nets); the 18 goals scored are the fewest of any team in the third period.In the first two periods, the Isles have been outscored 59-54.
The Isles have allowed eight empty net goals, matching Colorado for the NHL lead.The Isles allowed only ten empty-netters all last season.
54 to Go
The Isles have scored 9,946 goals in their history (excluding 41 shootout winners), leaving the club 54 shy of 10,000.
One over .500
The Islanders drop to one game over all-time NHL .500 (1324-1323-427 in 3,074 games). They have been below NHL .500 for only 1 day since they were 177-178-83 prior to their victory on January 16, 1978.
The Isles have scored 34 goals over the last 12 games (6-4-2) after scoring only 15 in the previous nine games (1-6-2).The Isles have scored 38 goals in their 11 wins (3.45 per game) and 34 goals in their other 21 games (0-15-6; 1.62 per game).In their 15 regulation losses, the Isles have scored 18 goals (1.20 per game).
Head of the Class
John Tavares' assist gives him 148 career points, four more than Matt Duchene for most among 2009 draft picks.No other player in that draft is anywhere close.
Friends, Friends, Friends
Moulson now has 16 goals on the season; John Tavares has earned assists on 13 of them.He has now been on-ice for 40 consecutive Moulson goals, earning assists on 29 of them, dating back to Moulson goal on November 17, 2010 against Tampa.Moulson's goal was his 77th with the Islanders.He is now 14 goals away from a third consecutive 30-goal season; no Islander since Ziggy Palffy has accomplished that feat.
Race to 50
Kyle Okposo and Michael Grabner each have 49 career goals.
In the Circle
The Islanders started strong, but ended up winning only 28 of 63 (44%) face-offs. John Tavares won 12 of 21 but the other Islanders won only 16 of 42.
Marc Eaton returned to the active roster and played 14:45, blocking 5 shots.With Eaton's return, Dylan Reese was returned to Bridgeport. Al Montoya (concussion), David Ullstrom(concussion) and Steve Staios (upper body injury) were scratched. Brian Rolston, Jay Pandolfo, Rick DiPietro, and Mark Katic are on injured reserve.The Isles have lost 147 man-games to injury so far this season. Anders Nilsson dressed as the back-up to Nabokov.
Matt Moulson, the Isles' reigning ironman, has played in all 196 games since joining the team. Travis Hamonic has now played 94 NHL games (all consecutive); he has the longest consecutive game streak on defense for the Isles.
Season Series Stats
The Rangers lead the season series 2 games to one (four points to two). The Islanders will return to the Garden on Monday and then won't see the Rangers again until late February.
1 year ago tonight (12-22-10): John Tavares scored the winner in overtime as the Islanders defeated Tampa Bay 2-1 at the Coliseum.
Overall, the Isles are 10-7-1 on this date.
On The Farm
Bridgeport has dropped six straight and is 11-14-3-1 on the season.The Sound Tigers are off until Boxing Day, when they'll entertain the Baby Rangers (Connecticut Whale) while the Isles are visiting their parents at Madison Square Garden.
FRIDAY, DECEMBER 23rd TORONTO AT ISLANDERS 7:00PM [MSG+2 (Islanders Game Night at 6:30pm), WRHU (88.7FM)]
The Islanders welcome back former Head Coach Scott Gordon as they face the Maple Leafs for the first time this season.
The teams split four games last season, with overtime goals by John Tavares and Blake Comeau responsible for the Islander victories.
The Isles are 14-3-2 in their last 19 games against the Leafs at the Coliseum.
Eric Hornick has been the statistician on Islander home game telecasts since January 21, 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