By Eric Hornick
St. Louis 4, Isles 3 (SO)
TJ Oshie scored the tying goal in the final minute and video review erased an overtime goal from Thomas Vanek as the St. Louis Blues rallied from 2-0 and 3-2 deficits and defeated the Islanders 4-3 before a crowd of 15,888 at Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum. US Olympian Kevin Shattenkirk scored the deciding goal in the shootout; all four of his career shootout goals have been deciding goals. With the point the Isles received, they move within six points of the final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference.
04:01 NYI Thomas Vanek (19) Snap shot - ASST: Kyle Okposo (32), John Tavares (41) 1 - 0 NYI
15:11 NYI Kyle Okposo (22) Wrap-around - ASST: Thomas Vanek (28), Thomas Hickey (11) 2 - 0 NYI
17:17 STL Vladimir Tarasenko (16) Wrist shot - ASST: Maxim Lapierre (4) 2 - 1 NYI
01:17 STL Vladimir Tarasenko (17) Wrist -ASST: Alexander Steen (17), Kevin Shattenkirk (28) 2 - 2 Tie
03:58 NYI Matt Martin (4) Snap shot - ASST: Colin McDonald (4), Casey Cizikas (7) 3 - 2 NYI
19:33 STL T.J. Oshie (12) Wrist shot - ASST: Alex Pietrangelo (31), Alexander Steen (18) 3 - 3 Tie
Frans Nielsen (NG), T.J. Oshie (NG), Thomas Vanek (G), Alexander Steen (G), John Tavares (NG), Kevin Shattenkirk (G)
The Blues have won both shootouts against the Isles, with the previous win coming in 2010.
With 1:15 remaining in overtime, a puck deflected into the Blues goal off of the skate of Thomas Vanek. "My foot was on the ice the whole time," he said. "It hit my skate blade and spun right in." However, video review overturned the goal, saying that it had been directed in by a distinct kicking motion. Jack Capuano disagreed, noting "the referees made the right call on the ice".
The NHL's situation room blog details the situation and has video here: http://www.nhl.com/ice/blogpost.htm?id=25587
The Isles built a 2-0 first period lead for the second straight game and couldn't hold it; the Isles are 6-3-5 in games that they lead 2-0...Kyle Okposo's assist on Thomas Vanek's goal was his 53rd point, setting a new career high; his previous high of 52 was set in 2009-10….Okposo now has 22 goals, which is 18 goals more than he scored last season; St. Louis' Alex Steen is the only other player to exceed last season's goal total by 18 goals...The Isles are 8-4-1 in 2014 and are 12-6-1 in their last 19… …Frans Nielsen's assist/point streak ended at 6 games (he would have earned an assist had Vanek's goal not been reversed) but John Tavares extended his point streak to six games and Kyle Okposo extended his point streak to five games…Thomas Hickey was +2; he is +8 over the past three games, going at least +2 in each. Hickey leads the Isles with a +9 rating….The shootout loss ended a 4-game winning streak for the Isles in OT/SO games. The Isles are 8-8 overall in extra time this season, but are only 3-8 at home. The eight home OT/SO losses are the most in franchise history…The Blues have outscored their opponents 58-31 in the third period this season…The Isles are 1-3-2 in their black uniforms this season.
The Last Minute Game-Tying Goals
This is the fourth time this season (all at home) the Isles have allowed a game-tying goal in the final minute of regulation:
· November 16: Pavel Datsyuk (19:17); Isles beat Detroit in shootout
· November 30: Nicklas Backstrom (SH) (19:11); Isles lost to Washington in overtime
· December 17: Valtteri Filppula (19:56); Isles lost to Tampa Bay in shootout
· January 25: TJ Oshie (19:33); Isles lost to St. Louis in shootout
The Lost Leads
Isles are 9-7-6 when leading 1-0, are 6-3-5 when leading 2-0, and are 7-4-4 when leading after two periods.
What a Month!
The Isles are 8-4-1 in January, with three games to play.
It's the first time since 2003 that the Isles have earned 8 wins in January and matches their most January wins since they earned 9 in January 1990. The Isles have earned ten victories in January only once in franchise history, going 10-4-1 in 1980 (April and May were pretty good that year, too!)
Home and Road
The Islanders are 21-25-8 overall, 8-10-8 at home and 13-15-0 on the road. The Isles are 7-3-1 in their last 11, 12-6-1 in their last 19 and are 13-7-3 in their last 23 games overall.
The Blues are 35-11-5 overall; they are 18-5-2 at home and 17-6-3 on the road. The Blues completed their road trip with a 3-1-0 record.
The Isles are 5-12-3 in Division games and are 16-13-5 in games against other divisions. They are 7-4-3 vs. the Atlantic Division, 6-4-1 vs. Central Division, and 3-5-1 vs. the Pacific Division.
In the Nets
Kevin Poulin made 32 saves but fall to 11-15-1 on the season. He is 7-3-1 in his last 11 decisions. This was his first shootout loss in four decisions this season (3-1)
Jaroslav Halak made 33 saves for the Blues and improves to 22-7-3 on the season. Halak is 7-1-1 in his career against the Isles.
The Islanders were 0-5 while the Blues were 0-2.
The Isles are 13-6-4 when they score at least one power play goal and 8-19-4 when they do not. The Isles are 10-15-3 when they allow at least one power play goal and 11-10-5 when they do not.
The Islander special teams are much improved as of late. The power play is 15-64 (23.4%) over the last 19 games while the Isles have killed 49 of 58 (86.8%) over the last 20 games while scoring three shorthanded goals.
Tale of Three Seasons
The Isles PP went 10-33 in the first 10 games, before going 7-79 in the next 24 games. Since then, the Isles are 15-64 in the last 20 games (including 13-50 in the last 12 games (26.0%).
Three is a Magic Number
The Isles are 19-6-3 when they score at least three goals (including shootout winners) and are 2-19-5 when they do not.
The Isles are 9-7-6 when they score first and are 12-18-2 when they allow the opening goal. The Isles have allowed the first goal in 12 of their last 16 games. The Isles have scored first in 15 of their 26 home games but are 6-3-6 in those games.
Second to The One
Jack Capuano became the 2nd coach in Islander history to win 100 games in Toronto on January 7th. He is 2nd on the all-time Islander list in both games coached (249) and wins (105).
Most games coached (Islanders):
1. Al Arbour 1,500
2. Jack Capuano 249
3. Mike Milbury 191
4. Terry Simpson 187
5. Scott Gordon 181
Most wins by Islander coaches:
1. Al Arbour 740
2. Jack Capuano 105
3. Terry Simpson 81
4. Peter Laviolette 77
5. Ted Nolan 74
They Said It
John Tavares: "We had the lead with 20 seconds left and we didn't get the job done. The puck seemed to have eyes on that one. They made a push and we aren't doing enough to hang on to the leads… That's a big point we lost today."
The Associated Press (no byline): "The Islanders won the game. And then, they did not. And they are still trying to figure out why."
They Tweeted It
@IslesFan_Ben I really like how @T_Vanek26 said what was on his mind. He was 110% correct. He's the man in my book. #Isles
"The referees made the right call on the ice. Then they must have seen something in Toronto that was conclusive."
The Isles are 6-6-0 in the front-end and 5-5-2 on the back end of back-to-backs this season. This is their third sweep: November 1st/2nd vs. Ottawa and Boston; January 6th/7th vs. Dallas and Toronto.
In the twelve sets of back-to-backs, they have earned 4 points three times, 3 points once, 2 points four times, 1 point once and no points on three occasions.
The Islanders do not play back-to-back again until they host New Jersey and Florida on March 1st and 2nd.
Leading Ice Men
Andrew MacDonald led the Isles with 28:07 of ice-time. Alex Pietrangelo led the Blues with 30:03 of ice-time.
The Isles are 14-14-6 when MacDonald leads in ice-time, are 7-10-2 when Hamonic leads, and are 0-1-0 when Okposo leads.
In the Circle
The Islanders won 38 of 69 draws but lost all three draws with the Blues net empty late in the third period. Fran Nielsen won 11 of 19 draws for the Isles; Vladimir Sobotka won 10 of 15 for the Blues.
The Isles were out-hit 19-17. Matt Martin led the Isles with four hits; his 257 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 20 fights this season: Martin (7), Boulton (5), Carkner (5), McDonald (2), and Okposo (1).
Giving Up the Body
The Isles were credited with 12 blocked shots. Andrew MacDonald and Brian Strait led the way with three blocks; MacDonald extended his NHL-leading total to 178.
Five Over All-Time .500
The Islanders remain five games over all-time NHL .500 (1392-1387-447 in 3,226 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.
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 184 consecutive games, and is one of four Islanders to have played in every game this season. Other ironman streaks: Andrew Mac Donald (155), Matt Martin (115), and Thomas Hickey (55).
Andrew MacDonald has the 4th longest consecutive game streak for 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. Andrew MacDonald 12/19/11- CURRENT 155
5. Janne Niinimaa 3/13/2004-1/7/2006 136 (**)
6. Ken Morrow 3/1/1980-12/29/1981 134 (*)
7. Mark Streit 10/8/2011-4/26/2013 130
8. Travis Hamonic 2/24/2012-1/12/2014 117
9. Travis Hamonic 11/24/2011– 2/4/2012 113 (*)
10. Jean Potvin 10/23/1975-1/2/1977 110
11. Kenny Jonsson 12/26/1996-2/4/1998 104
(*) Start of NHL career.
(**) Entire career with Islanders
Lubomir Visnovsky and Evgeni Nabokov remain on injured reserve. Travis Hamonic missed his seventh game with an upper body injury. Matt Carkner replaced Radek Martinek in the lineup; Eric Boulton was scratched for the third straight game.
The Isles have lost 144 games this season due to injury.
Nobody Beats the Viz
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 18-22-6 this season without him in the lineup.
Career Goals as an Islander
15 Mariusz Czerkawski 145
16 John Tavares 135
17 Jason Blake 127
28 Mikko Makela 95
28 David Volek 95
30 Randy Wood 94
30 Kyle Okposo 94
32 Greg Gilbert 93
32 Garry Howatt 93
34 Travis Green 92
35 Butch Goring 87
36 Tomas Jonsson 84
37 Wayne Merrick 81
37 Dave Scatchard 81
39 Marty McInnis 79
40 Michael Grabner 78
40 Miroslav Satan 78
42 Frans Nielsen 77
43 Claude Lapointe 76
Career Assists as an Islander
16 Ed Westfall 181
17 John Tavares 178
18 Kenny Jonsson 175
19 Alexei Yashin 171
20 Duane Sutter 171
21 Jean Potvin 167
22 Jeff Norton 166
23 Zigmund Palffy 163
24 Frans Nielsen 161
25 David Volek 154
26 Mariusz Czerkawski 150
27 Travis Green 145
27 Kyle Okposo 145
29 Steve Thomas 140
Career Games as an Islander (skaters)
24 Eddie Westfall 493
25 Radek Martinek 479
26 Gerry Hart 476
32 Dave Langevin 422
33 Frans Nielsen 421
34 Wayne Merrick 411
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 378
42 Kyle Okposo 372
43 Dave Scatchard 347
44 Alexei Yashin 346
45 Mark Parrish 345
46 John Tavares 344
47 Marty McInnis 337
Career Points as an Islander
16 Ziggy Palffy 331
17 John Tavares 313
18 Mariusz Czerkawski 295
24 David Volek 249
25 Kyle Okposo 238
25 Ray Ferraro 238
25 Frans Nielsen 238
28 Travis Green 237
Season Series Stats
The Blues win the season series 2 games to 0 (and 4 points to 1).
The Isles are 2-0-3 in their last five at home against St. Louis, who last won at the Coliseum in regulation back in 2004.
17 years ago tonight (1-25-97): On Al Arbour Night, the Islanders raise a banner commemorating Arbour's 739 wins and then defeat Chicago 3-2. Arbour would win game 740 in 2007.
All-time, the Isles are 2-6-3 on this date, having gone 0-3-1 since that 1997 win.
On The Farm
Bridgeport has had a good weekend so far, defeating Portland (4-3 in a shootout) on Friday and Springfield (3-1) on Saturday. Ryan Strome scored the tying goal with 18 seconds to play on and added a shootout tally on Friday; Kenny Reiter made 31 saves on Saturday. Bridgeport improves to 17-22-1-4 on the season.
Anders Lee leads Bridgeport (and is tied for the AHL rookie lead) with 16 goals. Ryan Strome leads the team (and all AHL rookies) in assists (28); he also leads the Sound Tigers in points (38).
Bridgeport completes a 3-game in 3-day weekend at 5pm Sunday when they host Syracuse.
MONDAY, JANUARY 27th —BOSTON AT ISLANDERS 7:00PM
[MSG+ (Islanders pre-game at 6:30pm), 88.7 WRHU-FM, 103.9 WRCN-FM]
[MSG+ (Islanders pre-game at 6:30pm), 88.7 WRHU-FM, 103.9 WRCN-FM]
The Islanders and Bruins meet for the final time in the regular season as they complete the season series at the Coliseum.
The Islanders will be looking to sweep the season series for the first time since winning all four games in 2005-2006
Going back to last season, the Isles have won the last three games against the Bruins for the first time since winning six straight from 2005-2007.
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 January 21, 1982. Visit my blog: NYISkinny.com and follow me on Twitter @ehornick