By Eric Hornick
Isles 3, Chicago 2 (OT)
Just one day after he was denied a berth on the United States Olympic
Team, Kyle Okposo scored the game winning goal in overtime as the Islanders won
their third straight game for the first time this season, defeating the Stanley
Cup Champion Chicago Blackhawks 3-2 before a crowd of 13,618 at Nassau Veterans
Memorial Coliseum. Thomas Vanek and
Casey Cizikas also scored for the Islanders.
15:24 NYI Casey Cizikas (5) Wrist shot - ASST: NONE 1 - 0 NYI
08:09 NYI Thomas Vanek (14) Backhand - ASST: Kyle Okposo (26), Andrew
MacDonald (15) 2 - 0 NYI
18:36 CHI PPG - Brent Seabrook (5) Slapshot - ASST: Kris Versteeg (15),
Nick Leddy (14) 2 - 1 NYI
01:50 CHI Ben Smith (5) Tip-in - ASST: Jonathan Toews (26), Patrick
Sharp (20) 2 - 2 Tie
00:58 NYI Kyle Okposo (16) Wrist shot - ASST: John Tavares (29), Andrew
MacDonald (16) 3 - 2 NYI
Kyle Okposo extended his point streak to eight games (longest current
streak in the NHL, and matching his career high) while Thomas Vanek extended his
point streak to seven games (one shy of his career high—done in the first 8
games of last season); Okposo also has a goal in three straight (first time
since a five-game streak in March 2012) and a helper in four straight … Okposo re-ties
John Tavares for the team lead in goals (16)… Andrew Mac Donald had two assists
for the second consecutive game; he has five assists in the last three games…Vanek's
goal gives the Isles four players with at least 14 goals; Chicago is the only
team with at least four – they have 5…Ryan Strome had six shots on goal as he
searches for his first NHL goal; Strome remains +1 on the season. Fellow rookie Brock Nelson had three shots on
net… The Blackhawks have outscored their opponents 156-110 in regulation, but
have been outscored 3-0 in overtime….Casey Cizikas played in his 100th game; he is the 155th skater to appear in 100 games for the Isles.
Kyle Okposo scored his fourth career OT goal, tying the club record
already shared by Mike Bossy, Pat LaFontaine, Pierre Turgeon and John Tavares. 15 of his 88 career goals have been
It's the first time that the Isles have scored an overtime goal since
Thomas Hickey beat Montreal on February 21, 2013 and the first time that they
have done so at home since February 11, 2012 (Mark Streit).
It's the first Isles overtime goal in their last 15 home overtimes
(plus two in the playoffs) and their first overtime goal in their last 21
overtime games (plus two in the playoffs).
Okie's OT goals
12-Mar-09 @ Montreal 3 2 Wot
13-Nov-09 @ Carolina 4 3 Wot
26-Dec-09 @ New York 3 2 Wot
2-Jan-14 Vs Chicago 3 2 Wot
First Time in
a Long Time
Okposo is the first Islander to record a goal and an assist in three
consecutive games since Michael Grabner did it from March 18-22, 2011. It's the 7th time this season that
Okposo has had a goal and an assist in the same game, tying Tavares for the
Islander Assistant Captain Kyle Okposo has eight points over the last
three games and 13 points over the last eight games; he is now 2nd in scoring
among all American-born players:
Player Team GP G A P
Patrick Kane CHI 42 23 30 53
Kyle Okposo NYI 42 16 26 42
Pavelski SJS 41 17 22 39
Phil Kessel TOR 41 20 17 37
Bobby Ryan OTT 43 18 18 36
Okposo has also moved into the Top-10 in scoring for all players, tying
Alex Ovechkin and Patrick Sharp for 9th. (John Tavares is now tied-5th with Nicklas Backstrom.)
Home and Road
The Islanders are 14-21-7 overall, 6-8-7 at home and 8-13-0 on the road. The
Isles are 6-3-2 in their last eleven games overall; the win breaks an 8-game
home winless streak (0-4-4) and a franchise-record 10-game streak without a
regulation/overtime home win (1-5-4).
The Blackhawks are 28-7-8 overall; they are 15-2-5 at home and 13-5-3 on
the road. The Blackhawks extend their point streak to eight games (5-0-3); they
are now 8-1-3 in their last twelve games.
The Isles are 3-9-3 in Division games and are 5-3-3 vs. the Atlantic
Division. The Isles are 3-4-0 vs.
Central Division teams and 3-5-1 vs. the Pacific Division.
In the Nets
Evgeni Nabokov made 37 saves as he
improves to 9-7-5 on the season. Nabokov
is 4-2-2 with a 2.10 GAA since returning from injury and is 15-6-5 in his
career against the Blackhawks.
Corey Crawford made 31 saves for Chicago
in his first game since being injured December 8th. Crawford is
17-6-4 on the season.
The Islanders were 0-2 while the Blackhawks were 1-1.
The Isles are 8-5-4 when they score at least one power play goal and 6-16-3
when they do not. The Isles are 6-14-3
when they allow at least one power play goal and 8-7-4 when they do not.
The Islander special teams have improved as of late. The power play is 6-24 (25.0%) over the last eight
games while the Isles have killed 18 of 22 (81.8%) over the last nine games
while scoring two shorthanded goals.
Three is a
The Isles are 14-4-2 when they score at least three goals (including
shootout winners) and are 0-17-5 when they do not.
The Isles are 9-5-5 when they score first and are 5-16-2 when they
allow the opening goal.
Second to The
Jack Capuano is now 2nd on the all-time Islander list in
both games coached (237) and wins (98).
Most games coached (Islanders):
1. Al Arbour 1,500
3. Mike Milbury 191
4. Terry Simpson 187
5. Scott Gordon 181
Most wins by Islander coaches:
1. Al Arbour 740
3. Terry Simpson 81
4. Peter Laviolette 77
5. Ted Nolan 74
They Said It
Kyle Okposo: "Johnny had some time, and I saw both guys [go] to
him. I was hoping the puck would come to me and it popped right on my stick,
and I got it over his glove this time…"I'm going to keep playing well and
keep trying to get this team to where we need to be," he said.
John Tavares: "It was fitting to see Kyle put that one in. I think
he sent a message with that one…"It's two points for us, and it shows we
can compete with top-level teams.
@Goon1214 on a train back to NY from Florida, watched OT on internet
stream on iPhone....makes this 26 hr ride not so bad anymore #isles
@beLIeveIsles Thank you @bookerT2116 for being you. Your every #Isles
fan's American hero!
@4Isles4Life Was well worth the slow trek home in a blizzard after watching
@bookerT2116 and the #isles beat the champs
"I thought (Kyle) was playing well all game…it was a great shot… We
fought hard against a good team, and we were fortunate to get the bounced we
needed in overtime."
The Isles are 4-6-0 in the front-end and 3-5-2 on the back end of
back-to-backs this season.
In the ten sets of back-to-backs, they have earned 4 points once, 3
points once, 2 points four times, 1 point once and no points on three
The next back-to-back set will be January 6th vs Dallas and
January 7th in Toronto.
of the Class
John Tavares has 294 career points; he is 64 points ahead of Matt
Duchene for most among 2009 draft picks. No other player from that draft is anywhere close. Tavares also has more goals and more assists
than any other player from that draft.
Andrew MacDonald played 24:31 to lead the Isles for the 27th time this season. Duncan Keith led the Hawks
with 25:41 of ice-time, but was -2.
The Isles are 10-12-5 when MacDonald leads them in ice-time and 4-9-2
when Hamonic leads them.
In the Circle
The Islanders won 26 of 54 draws. Frans Nielsen won 8 of 14 for the Isles; Michael
Handzus won 7 of 11 for Chicago.
The Isles out-hit the Hawks 13-3. Matt Martin out-hit Chicago by himself. Martin had five hits to lead the Isles; his 201
hits lead the NHL by a wide margin. He
had now recorded at least 200 hits in four straight seasons.
There were no fights. The Isles
have been involved in 15 fights this season: Martin (6), Boulton (4), Carkner (4),
Giving Up the
The Isles were credited with 16 blocked shots. Andrew MacDonald led the
Isles with five blocks, extending his NHL-leading total to 143.
2 Over All-Time
The Islanders improve to two games over all-time NHL .500 (1385-1383-446
in 3,214 games). The Isles have been 1-under all-time .500 after six games this
season and have gone 4-0-2 in the following game. It's the first time that they have been 2
games over NHL-.500 since December 3rd.
The Isles have finished every season since 1977-78 above all-time NHL
.500 and have not been more than 1 game under NHL-.500 since January 11, 1978.
Frans Nielsen is the Islanders' reigning ironman. He has played 172 consecutive games, and is
one of six Islanders to have played in every game this season. Other current ironman streaks: Kyle Okposo
(155), Travis Hamonic (112), Matt Martin (103), Andrew Mac Donald (90) and
Thomas Hickey (43).
Travis Hamonic is the only defenseman in Islander history with two
streaks in which he played at least 100 consecutive games. Those are two of only 10 streaks of at least
100 consecutive games by a defenseman in Islander history:
1. Denis Potvin 11/29/1975-1/17/1979 262
2. Bryan McCabe 10/7/1995-2/4/1998 220 (*)(**)
3. Gerry Hart 3/1/1975-11/22/1977 198
4. Janne Niinimaa 3/13/2004-1/7/2006 136 (**)
5. Ken Morrow 3/1/1980-12/29/1981 134 (*)
6. Mark Streit 10/8/2011-4/26/2013 130
7. Travis Hamonic 11/24/2010 – 2/4/2012 113 (*)
Hamonic 2/24/2012- CURRENT 112
9. Jean Potvin 10/23/1975-1/2/1977 110
10. Kenny Jonsson 12/26/1996-2/4/1998 104
Start of NHL career.
Entire career with Islanders
Lubomir Visnovsky and Radek Martinek remain on injured reserve. Josh Bailey missed his third game with an
upper body injury; Eric Boulton was scratched. Matt Donovan has been recalled
from Bridgeport; Aaron Ness was loaned to the Sound Tigers. The Isles have lost
108 games this season due to injury.
The Isles were 19-12-4 last season and are 3-3-2 this season with
Lubomir Visnovsky in the lineup. They
were 5-5-3 last season and are 11-18-5 this season without him in the lineup.
Career Wins, Active
1. Martin Brodeur681
2. Roberto Luongo364
3. Evgeni Nabokov344
4. Nikolai Khabibulin333
18. Evgeni Nabokov344
Gump Worsley 335
Nikolai Khabibulin 333
Career Shutouts, Active Goalies
1. Martin Brodeur124
2. Roberto Luongo65
3. Evgeni Nabokov56
4. TomasVokoun 51
Clint Benedict 57
19 Evgeni Nabokov 56
Bernie Parent 54
Career Goals as an Islander
15 Mariusz Czerkawski 145
16 John Tavares 128
17 Jason Blake 127
34 Kyle Okposo 88
35 Butch Goring 87
36 Tomas Jonsson 84
37 Wayne Merrick 81
37 Dave Scatchard 81
39 Marty McInnis 79
40 Miroslav Satan 78
41 Claude Lapointe 76
42 Michael Grabner 75
42 Frans Nielsen 75
44 Lorne Henning 73
44 J.P. Parise 73
Career Assists as an Islander
20 Jean Potvin 167
21 John Tavares 166
21 Jeff Norton 166
23 Zigmund Palffy163
24 David Volek 154
25 Frans Nielsen 153
26 Mariusz Czerkawski 150
Career Games as an Islander (skaters)
24 Eddie Westfall 493
25 Radek Martinek 476
25 Gerry Hart 476
27 Mariusz Czerkawski 470
33 Wayne Merrick 411
34 Frans Nielsen 409
35 Jean Potvin 402
36 David Volek 396
37 Bert Marshall 392
38 Travis Green 388
39 Anders Kallur 383
40 Randy Wood 381
41 Josh Bailey 367
42 Kyle Okposo 361
43 Dave Scatchard 347
46 Marty McInnis 337
47 Butch Goring 332
47 Oleg Kvasha 332
47 John Tavares 332
50 Bruno Gervais 331
50 Ziggy Palffy 331
Career Points as an Islander
17 Mariusz Czerkawski 295
18 John Tavares 294
19 Duane Sutter 292
27 Kenny Jonsson232
28 Greg Gilbert 231
29 Benoit Hogue 229
29 Trent Hunter 229
31 Frans Nielsen 228
32 Kyle Okposo 227
33 Matt Moulson 223
The teams split the season series 1 game to 1 (Chicago earned three
points to the Islanders' two).
Each of the last three games between the teams have
ended in a 3-2 score; each of the last two Coliseum contests were won in
overtime (Patrick Sharp, 12/8/2011).
The Isles are 7-2-2 in the last 11 games against Chicago.
28 years ago tonight (1-2-86): Mike Bossy became the fastest
player to reach 500 goals in NHL history when he hit the empty net to cement a
7-5 win over Boston. Bossy's milestone
came in his 647th NHL game, smashing Phil Esposito's record (803
games). Bossy's record was later beat by
Wayne Gretzky and Mario Lemieux but Bossy still holds the NHL record for goals
Overall, the Isles are 11-12-1 on this date, including a wild 6-5
shootout win over Atlanta on this date in 2010.
On The Farm
The Bridgeport Sound Tigers are 13-17-1-3 on the season and will play
their first game of 2014 when they visit Norfolk on Friday.
Pierre-Marc Bouchard now has points in each of the last six games that
he has played. Anders Lee now leads Bridgeport with 13 goals; Lee also leads
current Sound Tigers in both assists (13) and points (26). Ryan Strome still leads the team in assists (24)
and points (33).
4th —CAROLINA AT ISLANDERS 7:00PM
[MSG+ (Islanders pre-game at 6:30pm), 88.7 WRHU-FM, 103.9 WRCN-FM]
The middle game of the three-game homestand will be
on Saturday as the Islanders and Hurricanes meet for the final time this
Carolina has won the first two games of the series,
both by a single goal. The Isles have lost
five straight to Carolina (0-4-1) and are 4-9-2 in their last fifteen games
against the Hurricanes.
Eric Staal has given the Isles problems throughout his career, going
21-16-37 in 36 games.
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