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Tuesday, January 31, 2012

The Skinny: Isles 5, Carolina 2

"The Skinny"

By Eric Hornick
 
Game 49
Isles 5, Hurricanes 2
John Tavares scored two goals and added two assists while Kevin Poulin made 21 saves for his first NHL win in nearly a year as the Islanders defeated the Carolina Hurricanes 5-2 in front of 15,575 at the RBC Center in Raleigh. It's the third time this month that the Islanders have defeated Kirk Muller's squad but the first time they have done it in regulation.

The Scoring:
1st Period
05:49 NYI PPG - PA Parenteau (11) - ASST: J. Tavares (30) and M. Streit (24)
 
2nd Period
16:19 NYI PPG - Matt Moulson (23) - ASST: M. Streit (25) and P. Parenteau (34)
 
3rd Period
03:15 CAR Brandon Sutter (11) - ASST: T. Gleason (14)
06:55 CAR PPG - Tim Brent (7) - ASST: J. Skinner (14) and E. Staal (26)
07:36 NYI John Tavares (21) - ASST: M. Moulson (22) and S. Staios (7)
18:37 NYI EN - Kyle Okposo (12) - ASST: J. Tavares (31) and A. MacDonald (4)
19:37 NYI EN - John Tavares (22) - ASST: K. Okposo (15) and M. Moulson (23)

The Skinny: 
John Tavares recorded his third four-point game of the season and fifth of his career. Tavares has nine points on the 10 goals the Islanders have scored against Carolina this season (and he was on-ice for the 10th).  He now has 99 career assists, one more than teammate Frans Nielsen.  It's the first time that the Islanders have beaten the Canes in regulation in over 4 years, dating back to January 22, 2008.  The Islanders scored two empty-net goals in the same game for the first time this season; they last allowed two in the same game against Boston on December 9, 2010.  The Islanders now have three players with at least 45 points; they are the first NHL team to have at least three this season. 

The Shots
The shots were even, 8-8 in the first period. The Isles outshot Carolina 10-5 in the second period but were outshot 10-8 in the third.  For the game, the Isles outshot Carolina 26-23.

Home and Road
The Islanders are 20-22-7 overall and are 9-11-3 on the road. The Isles have won three out of their last four road games and are 4-1-1 in their last six overall.
The Canes are 18-25-9 overall and 13-12-3 at home.  The loss broke a three-game Carolina winning streak at RBC.

In the Nets
Kevin Poulin made 21 saves to record his first NHL win since last February 5th. He is 1-2-0 this season and 5-4-1 in his NHL career.
Cam Ward made 20 saves for Carolina, but drops to 18-18-8 on the season.  He is 14-3-3 vs. the Isles in his career, but 0-1-2 this season. He had allowed two goals or fewer in each of his last eight starts.

Leaning on #91
John Tavares has 53 points (22-31-53) on 115 Islander goals this season (46%).  No Islander since Zigmund Palffy has recorded points on over 40% of the team's goals in a complete season.

Mr. Marginal January
Tavares should certainly be one of the NHL Three Stars of the Month when they are awarded on Wednesday.  In 13 games this month, Tavares tallied 9 goals and added 13 assists.  He recorded 22 points on the 35 goals the team scored this month (62.9%) and was +11.  Tavares was tied-3rd in the NHL in scoring when the game ended; he dropped to a tie for 4th when Steven Stamkos scored an overtime goal later in the evening.  (Evgeni Malkin, who the entire league has raved about this month, was 12-4-16 in 12 games this month.)
The Islanders went 7-5-1 this month.

Power Plays
The Islanders went 2-4 on the power play while the Canes were 1-2. The Isles entered the game 6th in the league with the extra man.  The Isles are 5-15 in the last six games on the power play and 11-37 in the last 14
games on the power play.
The Isles allowed only their second power play goal since December 26th.  They have killed 17-18 over the last eight games, 37-39 (94.9%) over the last 16 games and 41-44(93.2%) over the last 20 games, dating back to December 16th. 

They Said It
Kevin Poulin: "I felt great...Key saves that were needed in the first…and we won."

They Tweeted It
@StapeNewsday "#Isles lead 1-0 after 1 in Raleigh... Poulin makes save of the year on E. Staal in final :25 to preserve lead."

The Coach
"It was a big save Kevin made on Staal…he did exceptionally well."

Leading Ice Men
Andrew MacDonald led the Isles with 25:26; Justin Faulk led the Canes with 25:10. It's the third straight game that A-Mac has led the Isles in ice-time.

In the Circle
The Islanders won 23 draws; Carolina won 28. Frans Nielsen won 8 of 14 for the Isles; Jussi Jokinen won 6 of 7 for Carolina.

Heavy Hitters
The Islanders out-hit Carolina 23-15.  NHL hit leader Matt Martin led the Isles with eight hits, raising his total to 224.  Martin, who had a club record 299 hits last season (hits have only been recorded since 2005-06) leads the NHL in hits by a wide margin.  He is on a pace to have 375 hits, which would be the highest total of any NHL player since the lockout.

Third Periods
The Isles outscored Carolina 3-2 in the third period; the Isles have been outscored 55-37 overall in the third period (44-30 excluding empty nets). In the first two periods, the Isles have been outscored 83-79. 

9 to Go
The Isles have scored 9,991 goals in their history (excluding 42 shootout winners), leaving the club 9 shy of 10,000.

3 Over .500
The Islanders improve to three games over all-time NHL .500 (1333-1330-428 in 3,091 games).  The Isles have twice this season been one game below .500. Prior to this season, they had not been below NHL .500 since they were 177-178-83 prior to their victory on January 16, 1978.

Scoring
The Isles have scored 71 goals in their 20 wins (3.55 per game) and 46 goals in their other 29 games (0-22-7; 1.59 per game).  In their 22 regulation losses, the Isles have scored 27 goals (1.22 per game).

Five is Usually Safe
The Isles improve to 6-0-0 this season when scoring 5 (or more) goals, with two of the victories on the road.  The Isles have won 16 straight road games when they scored at least five goals, dating back to an 8-5 loss in Florida on March 17, 2007 – a game in which the Islanders allowed two empty-net goals.

Head of the Class
John Tavares' four points give him 174 career points; he is 28 points ahead of Matt Duchene for most among 2009 draft picks.  No other player in that draft is anywhere close. (Duchene suffered a knee injury in late December and has not yet resumed skating.)

Longest Point Streaks in NHL, Last 2 Seasons
·         Sidney Crosby, 25 games (11/5/10-12/28/10)
·         John Tavares, 12 games (12/29/11-1/21/12)
·         Ilya Kovalchuk 12 games (2/1/11-2/25/11)

Friends, Friends, Friends
Moulson has 23 goals this season; John Tavares has earned assists on 15 of them.  He has now been on-ice for 47 consecutive Moulson goals, earning assists on 31 of them, dating back to a Moulson goal on November 17, 2010 against Tampa. 

MOT-ley Crew?
Since being put together 14 games ago, Matt Moulson is 7-11-18, Kyle Okposo is 6-8-14, and John Tavares is 10-16-26. 

As Seen on MSG+
John Tavares is the third Islander to record 50 points in three consecutive seasons since the mid 1990's.  Ziggy Palffy and Mariusz Czerkawski are the others.

20-20-20, 30-30-30?
Matt Moulson is the first Islander since Jason Blake (4 seasons: 2002-03 to 2006-07) to have at least three consecutive 20-goal seasons. He is seven goals away from a third consecutive 30-goal season; no Islander since Ziggy Palffy has accomplished that feat.  Moulson has 84 goals as an Islander – the most by any Islander since the lockout.

20-20-20 x 2
Moulson and Tavares are the first Islander teammates to record at least twenty goals in three straight seasons since Mark Parrish and Jason Blake did so in 2002-03, 2003-04, and 2005-06.  Tavares, by the way, is the fifth player to score at least 20 goals for the Islanders in each of his first three NHL seasons, joining:
·         Billy Harris (first six seasons: 1972-73 through 1977-78),
·         Clark Gillies (five: 1974-75 through 1978-79),
·         Bryan Trottier (13: 1975-76 through 1987-88) and
·         Mike Bossy (all 10 seasons: 1977-78 through 1986-87).
 
Ironmen
Matt Moulson, the Isles' reigning ironman, has played in all 213 games since joining the team. Moulson's streak is the longest for an Islander since Richard Park played in 221 games from October 2006- February 2009.  Travis Hamonic has now played 111 NHL games (all consecutive); he has the longest consecutive game streak on defense for the Isles. 

Moulson is one of only five Islanders in the last thirty years to appear in 200 consecutive games:
·         Matt Moulson 10/3/2009-CURRENT  213
·         Richard Park 10/5/2006 – 2/18/2009 221
·         Mariusz Czerkawski 12/23/99 – 4/14/2002 215
·         Bryan McCabe 10/7/95-2/4/98 220
·         Bryan Trottier 3/7/81- 1/12/84 219
Billy Harris played in the first 576 games in Islander history; that figure still stands as the club record.

Century Club
Hamonic is only the 8th defensemen in Islander history to play in 100 consecutive games and the first since Janne Niinimaa. He now has the 6th longest streak by a defenseman in Islander history.
1.     Denis Potvin 11/29/1975-1/17/1979  262
2.     Bryan McCabe 10/7/95-2/4/98 220
3.     Gerry Hart 3/1/75-11/22/77 198
4.     Janne Niinimaa 3/13/2004-1/7/2006 136
5.     Ken Morrow 3/1/1980-12/29/1981 134
6.     Travis Hamonic 11/24/10 – CURRENT 111
7.     Jean Potvin 10/23/75-1/2/77 110
8.     Kenny Jonsson 12/26/96-2/4/98 104

Like Hamonic, McCabe and Morrow's streaks came at the start of their NHL careers.  Both Niinimaa's streak and McCabe's streak encompassed their entire Islander careers.

Missing Men
Al Montoya, Dylan Reese and Brian Rolston (all healthy) were scratched.  Marty Reasoner, Mike Mottau, Rick DiPietro, and Mark Katic are on injured reserve.  The Isles have lost 239 man-games to injury so far this season.  Evgeni Nabokov dressed as the back-up goalie for the second straight game. 

Welcome Back Rhett
Rhett Rakhshani made his first NHL appearance since December 13, 2010.

List Time
Career Wins, Active Goalies
4. Evgeni Nabokov  303
 
Career Wins
22. Billy Smith 305
23. Olaf Kolzig 303
25. Turk Broda 302
 
 
Most First Goals of Game (NHL This Season)
1
Matt Moulson
9
2
Evander Kane
7
2
Loui Eriksson
7
 
Career Goals as an Islander
32
Butch Goring
87
33
Matt Moulson
84
33
Tomas Jonsson
84
35
Wayne Merrick
81
35
Dave Scatchard
81
37  
Marty McInnis
79
38
Miroslav Satan
78
39
Claude Lapointe
76
40
John Tavares
75
41
Lorne Henning
73
41
JP Parise
73



 
Career Games as an Islander (skaters)
60
Gord Dineen
287
 
61
Frans Nielsen
286
 
62
Jeff Norton
282
 
63
Steve Thomas
275
 
64
Blake Comeau
261
 
65
Andre St. Laurent
261
 
66
Josh Bailey
260
 
67
Brad Lauer
259
 



76
JP Parise
240
 
77
Kyle Okposo
238
 
78
Adrian Aucoin
235
 



 
88
Andy Hilbert
218
 
89
Matt Moulson
213
 
90
Paul Boutilier
211
 
91
John Tavares
210
 
92
Gary Nylund
209
 
93
Mark Streit
205
 
93
Tom Fitzgerald
205
 
95
Billy Carroll
200
 









 
Career Points as an Islander
39
Lorne Henning
184
40
John Tavares
174
41
Randy Wood
172



50
Roman Hamrlik
153
51
Matt Moulson
147
52
Kyle Okposo
143
53
Frans Nielsen
142
53
Michael Peca
142
55
Dave Lewis
141



Season Series Stats
The Islanders lead the season series three games to none (and six points to two). The teams will complete the season series at the Coliseum on February 18th. The Isles have won three straight against Carolina in the same season for the first time since October 2001 and stopped a 10-0-4 Carolina point streak against them.

Southeast Warriors
The Isles are 8-4-0 against the Southeast this season, but just 6-13-3 against the rest of the Eastern Conference.  Tavares has 10 goals and 10 assists in the 12 games against the Southeast.

Happy Anniversary
38 years ago tonight (1-31-74):  Bobby Nystrom grabbed the share of the club rookie record for goals in a game (3), recording his first career hat trick in a 4-2 win over Los Angeles at the Forum.  Hall-of-Famer Rogatien Vachon was in nets for the Kings. 
All-time, the Isles are 8-8-1 on this date, with Capuano's victory tonight matching Al Arbour's total (1) for this date.
On The Farm
The Sound Tigers had quite the month of January.  Bridgeport is 10-0-0-1 in their last 11 and has taken over first place in the Northeast Division.  The Sound Tigers are 22-17-3-2 and visit Portland on Friday before returning home to play Manchester on Saturday.   Bridgeport is sporting the AHL player of the week for the second time this month.  Kevin Poulin won it early in the month with three straight shutouts; Casey Cizikas won it this past week with three consecutive three-point games.

Up Next
FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 3rd     ISLANDERS AT OTTAWA 7:30PM
[MSG+ (Islanders Game Night at 7:00pm), WRHU (88.7FM)]
Following a stop at home for Casino Night on Wednesday, (http://islanders.nhl.com/club/page.htm?id=76742) the Isles head to Ottawa for their first meeting of the season with the Senators on Friday.  Ottawa has struggled of late, dropping four straight games. The teams split four games last season, with each team winning once at home.  It will be the first meeting of the teams since last February 15th; they will play three times in 24 days this February.

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 January 21, 1982. Visit my blog: NYISkinny.com and follow me on Twitter @ehornick