By Eric Hornick
Isles 1, Arizona 0
Frans Nielsen scored the game's only goal with 2:31 to play and Jaroslav Halak made 19 saves for his first shutout as an Islander(and 31st of his career), as the Isles defeated the Arizona Coyotes before a crowd of 14,689 at Gila River Arena in Glendale, Arizona. The Isles move four games over NHL-.500 (9-5-0) for the third time this season and remain in sole possession of 2nd place in the Metropolitan Division. It's the first time that the Isles are 4 games over NHL .500 this late in a FULL season for first time since February 2008 (finished 24-17-7 in lockout season).
17:29 NYI Frans Nielsen (5) Wrist shot - ASST: Mikhail Grabovski (4), Thomas Hickey (2) 1 - 0 NYI
This is the 17th 1-0 win in Isles history; eight different goalies have been credited with the last nine 1-0 wins…Of the 17, 13 have been in regulation, 3 in overtime and 1 in a shootout….The last 1-0 win was in Washington on February 4, 2014 (Andrew MacDonald scored in the third period; Evgeni Nabokov recorded the shutout)…It's the 9th time in his career Jaroslav Halak has needed 19 or fewer saves for a shutout…It's the 5th time the Isles have blanked the Coyotes (franchise), but the first time since 1997 (Tommy Salo 12/6/97 at the Coliseum)…The Isles have not allowed a goal in 121:11 (the franchise record is 199:24) and have allowed only one goal in 148:27.
The Isles finish their Western road trip with a 3-2 record…Frans Nielsen leads the Isles with 2 game-winning goals this season; he was the only player in the NHL to score 25 goals last season without a single game-winning goal…Isles improve to 13-1-3 in last 17 games called by Jiggs McDonald…The Isles held Arizona without a shot on goal for the final 2:31 (after Nielsen's goal), including 1:37 of Coyote power play time…Isles improve to 3-5-2 in last 10 games that were scoreless after two periods…. The Isles allowed only three goals in the final three games of the trip (all wins); it's the first time since April 9-13, 2013 that the Isles have allowed only three goals in a 3-game stretchArizona's Antoine Vermette (407) and Keith Yandle (399) have the 2nd and 3rd longest active consecutive game streaks, behind St. Louis' Jay Bouwmeester (731)…. Dave Tippett tied Bob Francis' Coyotes' franchise record by coaching in his 390th game…Zbynek Michalek played in his 500th Coyote game.
The Isles are 9-5-0 thru 14 games, matching their most wins thru 14 games since they were 11-1-1-1 in 2001-02. The Isles were 6-5-3 through 14 games and 6-6-3 through 15 games last season, when they won only nine of their first 35 games (9-19-7).
This is only the 2nd time since the 1987-88 season that the Isles have won their 9th game by November 9th. The Isles improved to 9-0-1-1 with a win on October 30, 2001.
The Isles are 24-9-2 in their last 35 road games. Since the start of the 2013 (shortened) season, the Isles are 41-27-6 on the road.
Most road wins, last 3 seasons (h/t Hockey-Reference.com):
The six wins in their first nine road games matches the second-highest total in club history; the 2001-02 team opened 7-2-0-0 on the road.
Only five of the next 13 Islander games are on the road.
November to Remember?
The Isles begin November with the final four games of this road trip. The month also includes home-and-home series with Tampa Bay, Pittsburgh and Washington. The Isles are 3-1-0 this November.
The Isles won their first four games, lost their next two games, won the two games after that, lost the next three games before winning the last three.
Home and Road
The Islanders are 9-5-0 overall, 3-2-0 at home and 6-3-0 on the road.
Arizona is 6-7-1 overall; 4-3-0 at home and 2-4-1 on the road.
The Isles are 3-1-0 in Division games and are 6-3-0 in games against other divisions. They are 1-1-0 vs. the Atlantic Division, 1-2-0 vs. Central Division, and 4-1-0 vs. the Pacific Division.
The Isles won only three of their first 17 division games (3-11-3) last season.
This was the seventh of eight consecutive games against the Western Conference. The Isles are 4-3-0 in this stretch.
In the Nets
Jaroslav Halak made 19 saves and improves to 5-4-0 on the season with his 31st career shutout. It's the first time he has ever shutout the Coyotes; Halak is 5-2-1 in his career against Arizona.
Mike Smith made 31 saves for Arizona but falls to 4-7-0 on the season. Smith is 4-2-0 in his career against the Isles.
The Islanders were 0-3 on the power play while Arizona was 0-5.
The Isles have killed 9 straight over the last two games after they allowed 6 power play goals in 14 times short over the previous five games.
The power play is 5-25 (20%) over the last six games.
The Isles are 6-3-0 when they score at least one power play goal and 3-2-0 when they do not. The Isles are 4-4-0 when they allow at least one power play goal and 5-1-0 when they do not.
Three is (Usually) a Magic Number
The Isles are 7-1-0 when they score at least three goals (including shootout winners) and are 2-4-0 when they do not.
One Goal Games
The Isles are 6-1-0 in games decided by a single goal including 3-1-0 in regulation. They are 1-0 in games decided in overtime and are 2-0 in shootouts. Two games have been decided by two goals in which the second goal was an empty-netter. The Isles are 1-1 in those games.
The Isles are 6-4-0 when they score first and are 3-1-0 when they allow the opening goal.
Second to The One
Jack Capuano is the 2nd winningest coach in Islander history. Capuano is 127-125-39 behind the Islander bench.
Most games coached (Islanders):
1. Al Arbour 1,500
2. Jack Capuano 291
3. Mike Milbury 191
4. Terry Simpson 187
5. Scott Gordon 181
Most wins by Islander coaches:
1. Al Arbour 740
2. Jack Capuano 127
3. Terry Simpson 81
4. Peter Laviolette 77
5. Ted Nolan 74
They Said It
Jaroslav Halak: "Tonight it's great to get a win, especially a shutout, but the guys made it easier for me. They blocked shots, skated hard and the penalty kill did a great job."
Frans Nielsen: "Grabo(vski) came in with good speed around the net and I just tried to find a spot in the slot. It was a perfect pass, right on my tape. I closed my eyes and just shot it as hard as I could."
They Tweeted It
@ScottRBrooks The #isles win again. Another goal by Frans puts them ahead 1-0 in the "Nielsen" ratings.
@shneddles The name of the game is Halak it like that. #isles
@J_queline23 The islanders won with a goal by Frans nielsen with two and a half minutes left... I am still in shock
@Mermousse And as Frans Nielsen has showed us over the years, strong defensive play translates to legitimate offensive chances.
"Two consecutive games (we had) consistency in our penalty kill. We stayed tight and got the win."
The Isles are 2-0-0 in the front-end and 2-0-0 on the back end of back-to-backs this season. This is only the third time in franchise history that the Isles have swept their first two back-to-backs (1981-82 & 2001-02); in both those seasons they also swept the third set.
The next back-to-back set will be next Friday (11/14) in Florida and next Saturday (11/15) in Tampa Bay.
Leading Ice Men
Travis Hamonic led the Isles with 23:43 of ice-time while Oliver Ekman-Larsson led Arizona with 24:51.
Isles record by ice-time leaders: Johnny Boychuk (4-1-0), Travis Hamonic (2-1-0), Lubomir Visnovsky (2-1-0) and John Tavares (1-2-0).
Kyle Okposo led the forwards with 20:07 of ice-time. Isles record by Forward ice-time leaders: John Tavares (5-5-0), Kyle Okposo (2-0-0), Brock Nelson (1-0-0), and Casey Cizikas (1-0-0).
In the Circle
The Islanders won 27 of 54 draws (50%). Ryan Strome won 7 of 11 for the Isles; Antoine Vermette won 13 of 21 for Arizona.
The Isles won 12 of 18 draws in the first period but only 15 of 36 in the final 40 minutes.
The Isles have won 50% or less of the draws in every road game this season.
The Isles outhit Arizona 41-20. Anders Lee and Calvin deHaan had six hits to lead the Isles. Martin Hanzal had four hits for Arizona.
There were no fights, leaving the season total at two: Martin (1), Hamonic (1).
Giving Up the Body
The Isles were credited with 16 blocked shots; Travis Hamonic, Lubomir Visnovsky and Matt Martin led the Isles with two each.
For the Corsi Crowd
Mikhail Grabovski (+13) led the Isles in even-strength Corsi, which measures shots attempted for and against (including blocks). Grabovski and Nick Leddy had a team-leading 78% of Corsi For events.
Head of the Class
Islander Captain John Tavares has 330 career points; he is 58 points ahead of Matt Duchene for most among 2009 draft picks. No other player in that draft is anywhere close. Tavares also has more goals and more assists than any other player in that draft.
The Islanders improve to ten games over all-time NHL .500 (1414-1404-450 in 3,268 games).
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.
Nick Leddy and Thomas Hickey are the Islanders' reigning ironmen. Leddy has played 266 consecutive regular season games, while Hickey has played 97 consecutive regular season Islander games.
Josh Bailey, Michael Grabner and Matt Carkner are on injured reserve. Matt Donovan was scratched for the 14th straight game while Cory Conacher was scratched for the 2nd straight game. Brian Strait returned to the lineup, replacing Johnny Boychuk, who missed the game due to injury.
The Isles have lost 52 games this season due to injury, and have had four injured players for 10 of their 14 games.
All-time Islander Leader Board:
John Tavares has:
· 142 goals (16th all-time, 3 behind Mariusz Czerkawski and 5 behind Pierre Turgeon)
· 188 assists (16th all-time, 5 behind Pierre Turgeon and 61 behind Tomas Jonsson)
· 330 points (17th all-time, 1 behind Ziggy Palffy, 3 behind Tomas Jonsson and 10 behind Pierre Turgeon
· 364 games played (43rd among Islander skaters all-time, 17 behind Randy Wood)
Frans Nielsen has:
· 90 goals (35th all-time, 2 behind Travis Green)
· 173 assists (19th all-time, 2 behind Kenny Jonsson and 8 behind Ed Westfall)
· 263 points (23rd all-time and 5 behind Kyle Okposo)
· 461 games played (28th among Islander skaters all-time, 9 behind Mariusz Czerkawski)
Kyle Okposo has:
· 104 goals (26th all-time and 1 behind Ed Westfall & Benoit Hogue)
· 164 assists (24th all-time, 2 behind Jeff Norton and 3 behind Jean Potvin)
· 268 points (22nd all-time, 20 behind Ed Westfall)
· 404 games played (36th among Islander skaters all-time, 7 behind Wayne Merrick and 9 behind Josh Bailey)
Michael Grabner has:
· 82 goals (38th all-time, 2 behind Tomas Jonsson, 3 behind Frans Nielsen and 5 behind Butch Goring)
Josh Bailey has:
· 413 games played (34th among Islander skaters all-time and 9 behind Dave Langevin)
Season Series Stats
The Isles lead the season series 1 game to 0 (and 2 points to 0). The teams will meet again on February 24th at the Coliseum.
This was only the Isles' third win against the Coyotes since the franchise moved to the desert for the 1996-97 season (3-6-2). The Isles had just one shootout win (1-4-0) in their last five trips to 'Zona. This was their first regulation win in Arizona since February 13, 2004.
It Happened at the Coliseum … on NOVEMBER 8th
34 years ago tonight (1980) – Mike Bossy recorded his second hat trick of the season, raising his total to 15 goals in 15 games, as the Isles beat Chicago 7-3. Bryan Trottier assisted on all three goals and had a goal of his own as the Isles improved to 7-5-3 on the season.
Bossy's hat trick gave him five goals in the last two games; he would add 4 goals in the next game in the hottest streak of his 50 in 50 start. It was the 10th hat trick of Bossy's career.
Bryan Trottier told Newsday's Tim Moriarty: "Boss is incredible. Just incredible. He's fun to play with now. Heck, he's always fun to play with."
20-year-old Rollie Melanson improved to 3-0-0; Melanson was with the team because Chico Resch was injured. Resch would be traded four months later, leading to Melanson's permanent recall.
Also on this date: (1986) – Patrick Flatley became just the 2nd Islander to score a regular season overtime goal on Coliseum ice as the Isles edged Detroit 2-1.
All-time, the Isles have played nine November 8th games at the Coliseum and finish with a 5-3-1 record on this date at 1255 Hempstead Turnpike in Uniondale.
On The Farm
It was a record-setting night on Saturday in Bridgeport as the Sound Tigers improved to 7-3-0-1 with a 7-2 win over Albany. Bridgeport did something that the Islanders have never done – they scored on their first SIX power play attempts (and finished 6-8 on the night). It was the first time since 2011 that an AHL team has scored six power play goals in a game.
The Isles have only one game in their (regular season) history in which they scored five power play goals – the night that Mike Bossy scored his 50th goal in 50 games (1/24/1981 vs Quebec).
Kevin Poulin has allowed just five goals in his last four starts; Griffin Reinhart left the game in the second period with an apparent injury and did not return.
The teams meet again in Bridgeport on Sunday at 3pm.
TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 11th—COLORADO AT ISLANDERS 7:00PM
[MSG+2 (Isles Pre-game at 6:30pm), 88.7 WRHU-FM, 103.9 WRCN]
[MSG+2 (Isles Pre-game at 6:30pm), 88.7 WRHU-FM, 103.9 WRCN]
The Isles return home to conclude their season series with the Colorado Avalanche. The Avs handed the Islanders a 5-0 defeat in the first game of this just-concluded road trip behind 40 saves from Semyon Varlamov.
The Isles have had Colorado's number on home-ice, winning 6 of the last 7. The Avs' only Coliseum win in that stretch came in the final game before last season's Olympic break (5-2).
Note to viewers: All three games this week are on MSG+2.
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 & on his blog www.nyiskinny.com.
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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