By Eric Hornick
Pittsburgh 3, Isles 2 (OT)
Sidney Crosby scored 3:44 into overtime as the Pittsburgh Penguins rallied from a 2-0 deficit and defeated the Islanders 3-2 before a crowd of 13,915 at the Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum. It's the Islanders' second consecutive overtime loss and it extends the Isles' winless streak to seven straight games (0-5-2); they are 2-10-2 in their last 14 games.
09:53 NYI Kyle Okposo (7) Deflected shot - ASST: John Tavares (20), Thomas Vanek (10) 1 - 0 NYI
12:55 NYI Kyle Okposo (8) Slapshot - ASST: John Tavares (21), Andrew MacDonald (8) 2 - 0 NYI
19:44 PIT PPG - James Neal (9) Snap shot - ASST: Evgeni Malkin (29), Chris Kunitz (14) 2 - 1 NYI
08:00 PIT PPG - Sidney Crosby (14) Snap shot - ASST: Evgeni Malkin (30) 2 - 2 Tie
03:44 PIT Sidney Crosby (15) Wrist shot - ASST: NONE 3 - 2 PIT
Kyle Okposo's two goals match his career high; over his seven career 2-goal games, three have been Atlanta/Winnipeg and two have been against Pittsburgh… Okposo has more goals, more assists, and more points (8-14-22) in his career against Pittsburgh than against any other opponent…Okposo's goals were the Isles' first in the first period since scoring just before Evgeni Nabokov got hurt on November 16th vs. Detroit. …John Tavares earned the primary assist on both goals, but was held without a shot on goal… Isles have been outscored 32-17 in the third period, including 25-8 in the last 18 games; they have also been outscored 3-0 in overtime… Sidney Crosby now is 24-56-80 in 44 games against the Isles; he has 36 points vs. the Isles in the last five seasons—most of any opponent in that span…Evgeni Malkin had assists on both Penguin power play goals, extending his streak with an assist/point to nine games … This is the sixth time this season that the Isles have allowed at least two power play goals (0-5-1)… It's the first time that the Isles have lost consecutive games, both in overtime or shootout since March 11-13, 2012 (Rangers/Washington) and the first time in club history that they have allowed overtime times in consecutive games, both on Coliseum ice…The Isles have been outscored 28-13 during their seven- game winless streak, which is their longest winless streak since they had a 14-game streak from October 23-November 24, 2010 (0-11-3).
The Penalty Shot
Frans Nielsen was stopped on a third period penalty shot that was awarded with the Islanders shorthanded. It was the first penalty shot in an Islander game this season. The Isles have scored on 14 of 55 all-time penalty shots, but have been stopped on 18 of the last 19 penalty shots at the Coliseum (regular season). Nielsen, who scored against Boston and Philadelphia in 2010-11, is now 2 for 3 in his career in penalty shots.
The Lost Leads
The Isles are now 3-3-1 in games that they have led 2-0 and are 4-2-2 in games that they led after two periods.
Home and Road
The Islanders are 8-15-5 overall, 5-6-5 at home and 3-9-0 on the road. The Isles remain 7 games under NHL-.500 for the first time since the end of the 2010-11 season (30-39-13). The Isles finish their homestand with a 0-2-2 record.
The Penguins are 19-9-1 overall; they are 11-3-0 at home and 8-6-1 on the road. Pittsburgh's win is their fourth straight (matching their season high) and moves them one point ahead of Boston for the Eastern Conference lead. They are nine points ahead of Washington in the Metropolitan Division.
In the Nets
Anders Nilsson made 31 saves and is now 0-0-2 on the season despite a 2.63 GAA.
Marc-Andre Fleury made 21 saves to improve to 15-7-1 on the season. He is 19-7-4 against the Islanders in regular season play in his career.
The Islanders were 0-2 while the Penguins were 2-5. The Isles had not allowed a power play goal in the prior three games.
The Isles are 5-3-3 when they score at least one power play goal and 3-12-2 when they do not. The Isles are 2-11-3 when they allow at least one power play goal and 6-4-2 when they do not.
Over the last 18 games, the Isles power play is 5-61 (8.2%) while the penalty kill is 21-55 (61.8%). During the seven-game winless streak, the power play is 1-20 (and has allowed two shorthanded goals).
Three is a Magic Number
The Isles are 8-2-2 when they score at least three goals and are 0-13-3 when they do not.
Helps to Score First
The Isles are 6-2-4 when they score first and are 2-13-1 when they allow the opening goal. It's the first time in seven games that the Isles have scored the first goal.
Second to The One
Jack Capuano is now 2nd on the all-time Islander list in both games coached (223) and wins (92).
Most games coached (Islanders):
1. Al Arbour 1,500
2. Jack Capuano 223
3. Mike Milbury 191
4. Terry Simpson 187
5. Scott Gordon 181
Most wins by Islander coaches:
1. Al Arbour 740
2. Jack Capuano 92
3. Terry Simpson 81
4. Peter Laviolette 77
5. Ted Nolan 74
They Said It
John Tavares: "I have always said that the refs have the toughest job…but there are times it feels that they (opponents) can get away with a lot. Just trying to find the consistency."
They Tweeted It
@KatieStrangESPN #Isles In all seriousness, really hope Okposo garners serious Olympic consideration. Good guy, works his butt off, really wants the chance
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