Wednesday, April 09, 2014

The Skinny: Ottawa 4, Isles 1


"The Skinny"  

By Eric Hornick
Game 79
Ottawa 4, Isles 1
Jason Spezza and Ales Hemsky each recorded three points as the Ottawa Senators broke a 1-1 tie with under eight minutes to play and went on defeat the Islanders 4-1, spoiling the Isles' home finale before a crowd of 12,922 at the Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum. Coupled with the loss in Columbus on Sunday, the Isles have lost consecutive games in regulation for the first time since March 1st-2nd.  Despite their victory, the Sens were eliminated from the playoff chase when Columbus won in overtime.

The Scoring:
1st Period
NONE
2nd Period
12:45 OTT PPG - Jason Spezza (21) Slapshot - ASST: Erik Karlsson (52), Ales Hemsky (28) 1 - 0 OTT     
3rd Period
00:22 NYI Frans Nielsen (25) Snap shot - ASST: Kevin Czuczman (2), Josh Bailey (27) 1 - 1 Tie    
12:45 OTT Jason Spezza (22) Wrist shot - ASST: Ales Hemsky (29), Marc Methot (16)  2 - 1 OTT  
14:26 OTT Ales Hemsky (13) Wrist shot - ASST: Milan Michalek (22), Marc Methot (17) 3 - 1 OTT  
19:48 OTT EN - Matt Kassian (1) Wrist shot - ASST: Jason Spezza (43), Erik Condra (10) 4 - 1 OTT

The Skinny:  
Jason Spezza's two goals give him 250 goals in his NHL career… The Isles have now allowed an NHL-high 101 second period goals this season... Playing without John Tavares, the Isles are 9-7-3 since the Olympic break… The Isles are 18-11-5 with Ryan Strome in the lineup…Frans Nielsen broke an Isles scoreless streak of 137:27.  It was his 250th career point, becoming the 25th player in Islander history to record 250 points…Josh Bailey assisted on the goal to give him 35 points on the season, matching a career high …Brett Gallant wore number 59 in his NHL debut; he is the fourth Islander to wear that number.  Gallant, who set the Sound Tigers record for career fights (66) on Sunday needed just 57 seconds of playing time to get into his first NHL fight (with Matt Kassian)…Kassian's empty-netter was his first goal in over a year; his last goal (3/18/13) also came at the Coliseum… The Isles are 23-12-6 in their regular season home finales….The Isles finish the season 10-6-4 on Tuesdays…With tonight's loss the Isles are guaranteed to finish either 26th or 27th, leaving them with the 4th or 5th seed heading into the April 15th draft lottery. The Isles will have either an 8.1% or 10.7% chance of winning the lottery, depending on whether they are 26th or 27th overall.

The Shots:
Isles       17-15-14=46
Ottawa    9-10-13=32


The 46 shots were the most by the Islanders at home since they had 47 on October 9, 2010 in the season opener against Dallas.  It is the second-highest total of shots for the Isles in any game since then, exceeded only by the 57 shots that they took in Ottawa on November 1, 2013 (a franchise record for a road game).

The Injury:
Cal Clutterbuck left the game in the first period with an upper body injury and did not return.

Youth Movement
Brett Gallant made his NHL debut (playing 6:02, with 1 shot, 3 hits and 7 penalty minutes). Overall, the Isles dressed ten rookies: Kevin Czuczman, Calvin de Haan, Matt Donovan, Mike Halmo, Anders Lee, Brock Nelson, Anders Nilsson, Ryan Strome, John Persson and Gallant. 

Young D
The six Islander defensemen who dressed in this game had only 659 games of NHL experience:
·         Travis Hamonic - 248
·         Matt Carkner - 233
·         Thomas Hickey - 117
·         Matt Donovan - 51
·         Kevin Czuczman - 9
·         Scott Mayfield -  1
By comparison, Lubomir Visnovsky has played in 830 NHL games -- The Senators used four players with more experience than the entire Isles defense: Chris Philips, Jason Spezza, Chris Neil, and Ales Hemsky.

Home and Road
The Islanders are 31-37-11 overall, 13-19-9 at home (including 0-1-0 at Yankee Stadium) and 18-18-2 on the road. The Isles are 7-4-2 in their last 13 games.  Their 13-19-9 home record is their worst on home-ice for a full season since 2000-01, when they finished with 26 points.  Only 8 of the 13 wins came in regulation, matching the franchise record for fewest regulation wins at home (in 1999-2000).  The 19 regulation losses are their highest total since they lost 27 at home in 2000-2001.
Over the last two seasons, the Isles are 23-30-12 (58 points in 65 games) at home and 32-24-6 (70 points in 62 games) on the road.  The Isles have finished above NHL-.500 at home only once in the past seven seasons.
Ottawa is 34-31-14 overall; they are 16-17-6 at home and 18-14-8 on the road.

By Division
The Isles are 9-16-4 in Division games and are 22-21-7 in games against other divisions. They are 11-7-4 vs. the Atlantic Division, 7-6-1 vs. Central Division, and 4-8-2 vs. the Pacific Division.
The Isles do not have a winning record against every division opponent. They are 1-3-0 against Carolina, 1-2-1 against Columbus, 2-2-0 (with one to play) against New Jersey, 2-3-0 against New York, 1-3-0 against Philadelphia, 1-2-1 against Pittsburgh, and 1-1-2 against Washington.
This was the ninth of 12 consecutive games against Eastern Conference opponents to end the regular season.  The Isles are 5-2-2 in this stretch.

In the Nets
Anders Nilsson made 28 saves but falls to 6-7-2 on the season.
Craig Anderson made 45 saves for Ottawa and improves to 24-16-8 on the season.  Anderson is 6-5-2 in his career against the Isles.

Power Plays
The Islanders were 0-3 on the power play while Ottawa was 1-5. 
The Isles are 18-8-5 when they score at least one power play goal and 13-29-6 when they do not.  The Isles are 14-21-4 when they allow at least one power play goal and 17-16-7 when they do not. 
The Isles are 13-99 in the last 27 games on the power play and have allowed 18 power play goals in 76 times short over the last 18 games.   
The Isles finish the home season 27-145 (18.6%) on the power play and 24-118 (79.7%) on the penalty kill.

Feast or Famine
The Isles PP went 10-33 in the first 10 games, before going 7-79 in the next 24 games. They rebounded to go 11-32 in the following 11 games but are only 17-124 in their last 34 games.
Three is a Magic Number
The Isles are 25-10-4 when they score at least three goals (including shootout winners) and are 6-27-7 when they do not. 

Comeback Kids
The Isles are 15-9-8 when they score first and are 16-28-3 when they allow the opening goal.  The Isles have allowed the first goal in 28 of their last 41 games.

Second to The One
Jack Capuano became the 2nd coach in Islander history to win 100 games in Toronto on January 7th and became the 2nd coach in Islander history to coach 250 games on January 27th against Boston. He is 2nd on the all-time Islander list in both games coached (274) and wins (115).

Most games coached (Islanders):
1.     Al Arbour 1,500
2.     Jack Capuano 274
3.     Mike Milbury 191
4.     Terry Simpson 187
5.     Scott Gordon 181
Most wins by Islander coaches:
1.     Al Arbour 740
2.     Jack Capuano 115
3.     Terry Simpson 81
4.     Peter Laviolette 77
5.     Ted Nolan 74
They Said It
Travis Hamonic: "We had 40-something shots, you hope that one has to go in.  It's not like we didn't have the chances. We could have put five or six by him, but credit to Anderson, he played a good game. It seemed like we couldn't get those second and third opportunities early on in the game."

They Tweeted It
@defiantlydutch On the 40th anniversary of Hank Aaron's 715th HR, the Sens scored the game's 1st goal with 7:15 left in the 2nd.  (They would also score with 7:15 left in the 3rd period)
@ed_o_malley Well, as disappointing a season as this has been, sad that there are no more #isles home games to go to until October.
@yuhas9797 I don't care what anyone thinks or says, I'm a New York Islanders fan and that will never change  LET'S GO ISLANDERS #Isles
@Bruce_Bennett Here are my Top Ten images from the past 39 years of hockey photography: http://infocus.gettyimages.com/post/bruce-bennett-celebrates-his-5000th-hockey-game#.U0QplvldXzh#GettySport   (Bruce photographed his 5,000th hockey game tonight and was honored on the scoreboard and on our telecast)

The Coach
"We had some problems here at home. Obviously, [it's] something we have to straighten out if we want to make the playoffs [next year]."

Back-to-Backs
The Isles are 7-8-2 in the front-end and 7-8-2 on the back end of back-to-backs this season.  The Isles have swept four back-to-backs:  November 1st/2nd vs. Ottawa and Boston, January 6th/7th vs. Dallas and Toronto, January 20th/21st vs. Philadelphia and the Rangers and April 1st/2nd vs. Florida and Ottawa.
In the 17 sets of back-to-backs, they have earned 4 points four times, 3 points once, 2 points five times, 1 point three times and no points on four occasions. 
The Isles have one back-to-back set remaining: Thursday in Montreal and Friday in New Jersey.

Leading Ice Men
Travis Hamonic led the Isles with 25:19 of ice-time while Erik Karlsson led Ottawa with 26:15.

Josh Bailey played a career-high 24:34 to lead all forwards; he had never played more than 22:09 (10-9-10 vs. Dallas) in an NHL game.
The Isles are 15-17-6 when MacDonald leads in ice-time, are 15-15-5 when Hamonic leads, are 1-0-0 when deHaan leads, are 0-1-0 when Okposo leads, are 0-1-0 when Strait leads, are 0-2-0 when Tavares leads and are 0-1-0 when Vanek leads.

In the Circle
The Islanders won 32 of 66 draws (48%). Frans Nielsen won 15 of 26 for the Isles; Kyle Turris won 11 of 18 for Ottawa.

Heavy Hitters
The Isles out-hit Columbus 27-8.  Colin McDonald led the Isles with seven hits while Matt Martin added four hits. Martin now has 351 hits on the season and leads the NHL in hits by a wide margin; it is the second time in his career that he has recorded 300 hits.
Brett Gallant fought Matt Kassian in the first period. The Isles have received 35 fighting penalties this season: Martin (10), Carkner (9), Boulton (8), McDonald (2), Halmo (2), Hamonic (2), Gallant (1) and Okposo (1).

Giving Up the Body
The Isles were credited with eight blocked shots, including a team-high four blocks for Scott Mayfield.

All-time Winners
The Islanders fall to three games over all-time NHL .500 (1402-1399-450 in 3,251 games), with three games remaining in the current regular season. 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 not been more than 1 game under NHL-.500 since January 11, 1978 and have finished every season since 1977-78 over all-time NHL .500.

Ironman
Thomas Hickey is the Islanders' reigning ironman.  He has played 80 consecutive regular season games, and is the only Islander to have played in every game this season. 

Missing Men
John Tavares is on injured reserve. Eric Boulton, Brian Strait, Lubomir Visnovsky, Kyle Okposo, Michael Grabner and Calvin deHaan are also out injured. Radek Martinek was scratched.
The Isles have lost 226 games this season due to injury. 

Career Wins, Active Goalies
Career Wins
17. Rogie Vachon 355
19. Gump Worsley 335
20. Nikolai Khabibulin 333
Career Shutouts, Active Goalies
4. Tomas Vokoun 51
5. Henrik Lundqvist 50
Career Shutouts
16 Turk Broda 62
17 John Ross Roach 58
17 Evgeni Nabokov 58
19 Clint Benedict       57
Career Goals as an Islander
15         Mariusz Czerkawski       145
16         John Tavares   136
17         Jason Blake      127
27         Trent Hunter      99
28         Kyle Okposo    99
29         Mikko Makela    95
29         David Volek      95
31         Randy Wood     94
32         Greg Gilbert      93
32         Garry Howatt     93
34         Travis Green      92
35         Butch Goring     87
36         Frans Nielsen   85
37         Tomas Jonsson            84
38         Michael Grabner 82
39         Wayne Merrick  81
39         Dave Scatchard            81
Career Assists as an Islander
16         Ed Westfall       181
17         John Tavares   179
18         Kenny Jonsson 175
19         Alexei Yashin    171
20         Duane Sutter     171
21         Jean Potvin       167
22         Jeff Norton       166
23         Frans Nielsen   165
24         Zigmund Palffy 163
25         Kyle Okposo    155      
26         David Volek      154
           
Career Games as an Islander (skaters)
24         Eddie Westfall  493
25         Radek Martinek 479
26         Gerry Hart         476
                       
29         Scott Lachance 450
30         Frans Nielsen   444
31         Jason Blake      426
34         Wayne Merrick  411
35         Josh Bailey      403
36         Jean Potvin       402
37         David Volek      396
38         Bert Marshall     392
39         Kyle Okposo    390
40         Travis Green      388
41         Anders Kallur    383
42         Randy Wood     381
43         John Tavares   350
44         Dave Scatchard            347
Career Points as an Islander
16         Ziggy Palffy      331
17         John Tavares   315
18         Mariusz Czerkawski       295
                       
22         Jason Blake      258
22         Steve Thomas   258
24         Kyle Okposo    254
25         Frans Nielsen   250
26         David Volek      249
Season Series Stats
The Islanders win the season series 2 games to 1 (and 4 points to 3). The road team won all three games.
The Isles have never swept a season series from Ottawa.

Happy Anniversary
36 years ago today (April 8, 1978):  The Islanders clinch the Patrick Division for the first time in club history with a 7-2 pounding of the Rangers at the Coliseum.  Exactly one year later, the Islanders clinch first place overall with a 5-2 win at Madison Square.  Finally, on this date in 2007, Wade Dubielewicz' poke check makes for a joyous Easter Sunday as the Isles defeat New Jersey in a shootout to clinch a playoff berth on the season's final day.
 All-time, the Isles are 7-5-2 in regular season play on this date.  The Isles are also 6-2 on this date in playoffs games, including a victory over the Rangers in 1975 in the first playoff game in club history.

On The Farm
The Sound Tigers are 1-12-1-2 in their last 16 games and 27-36-2-6 on the season.  Bridgeport is off until Friday, when they visit Albany.

Up Next
THURSDAY, APRIL 10th –ISLANDERS AT MONTREAL 7:30PM
[MSG-Plus2 (Isles Pre-game at 7:00), 88.7 WRHU-FM, 103.9 WRCN-FM]
The Isles begin a season-ending three game in four day road trip as they visit the Canadiens on Thursday.  It will be the first meeting of the teams since the deadline deal that sent Thomas Vanek to the Canadiens. 
The Isles are 6-4-1 in their last 11 games against Montreal, but are 0-1-1 this season.  On November 10th, the Isles lost in Montreal 4-2 and on December 14th, Max Pacioretty scored the game's only goal in overtime as the Habs blanked the Isles at the Coliseum.
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

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