By Eric Hornick
Carolina 5, Isles 3
The Carolina Hurricanes scored four second period goals to break open a 1-1 game and defeat the Islanders 5-3 before a sellout crowd of 16,170 at the Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum.
For the second straight night, a disputed goal call went against the Islanders as Jay McClement's first period goal was ruled to have been legally deflected in off of his skate in the first period. McClement would add another goal in the second period for his first multi-goal game since 2010.
John Tavares would score his 30th goal of the season in the third period. Tavares, who is just one goal off his career high, reached the 30 goal plateau for the second time in his career; he is the 16th player in Islander history to record multiple 30 goal seasons. It gave him 65 points, most in the NHL. (Philadelphia's Jacob Voracek would re-tie him for the lead on Saturday night)
11:47 NYI Michael Grabner (7) ASST: Ryan Strome (27), Johnny Boychuk (23) 1 - 0 NYI
17:41 CAR Jay McClement (5) ASST: Chris Terry (4), Brad Malone (6) 1 - 1 Tie
01:26 CAR PPG - Justin Faulk (12) ASST: Eric Staal (19), Victor Rask (12) 2 - 1 CAR
09:50 CAR Jay McClement (6) ASST: Andrej Nestrasil (9), Nathan Gerbe (15) 3 - 1 CAR
15:11 NYI Nikolay Kulemin (12) ASST: Cal Clutterbuck (8), Travis Hamonic (21) 3 - 2 CAR
17:46 CAR Brad Malone (6) ASST: Andrej Nestrasil (10), John-Michael Liles (12) 4 - 2 CAR
19:52 CAR PPG - Michal Jordan (2) ASST: Jordan Staal (12), Jeff Skinner (10) 5 - 2 CAR
09:35 NYI John Tavares (30) ASST: Anders Lee (13), Nick Leddy (18) 5 - 3 CAR
The Isles are 10-7-1 since the All-Star break, as they completed a stretch of 18 games in 33 days; they have 18 games remaining and these will be played in 42 days… The Isles have scored first in 11 of their last 13 games… Nikolay Kulemin has a goal and three assists in the last three games; it was his first goal since January 19th…The Isles allowed at least 40 shots for the fifth time this season. They have had 40 shots themselves on 15 occasions.
Tired vs. Rested
This was the 20th time that the Isles, their opponent or both, were playing their second game in two nights.
· With the loss tonight, the Isles fall to 7-1-0 when both teams played the night before. This will also happen on March 29th vs. Detroit and April 11th vs Columbus.
· The Isles are 7-1-0 when they are rested and their opponents are not. This also next happen on March 13th vs Ottawa, March 21st in New Jersey, March 24th vs. Minnesota, April 4th vs Buffalo
· The Isles are 1-3-0 when their opponents are rested and the Isles are not. This will also happen on March 10th vs the Rangers, and March 14 vs. Montreal.
Metropolitan Division Standings (Top 4)
· ISLES 41-21-2=84 points / 64 games (34 ROW) Lost 5-3 to Carolina
· NY Rangers 38-17-6=82 points / 61 games (35 ROW) Lost 4-2 in Philadelphia
· Pittsburgh 35-17-9=79 points / 61 games (32 ROW) Idle
· Washington 33-20-10=76 points / 63 games (30 ROW) Idle
· ISLES: Tuesday @ Dallas, Thursday @ Nashville, Saturday @ Florida
· NY Rangers: Monday vs. Nashville, Wednesday @ Detroit
· Pittsburgh: Sunday vs. Columbus, Wednesday @ Colorado, Friday @ Anaheim, Saturday @ Los Angeles
· Washington: Sunday vs. Toronto, Tuesday @ Columbus, Thursday Vs Minnesota, Saturday Vs Buffalo
Year of the Fan:
The Isles have sold-out 19 of their 32 home dates this season. The 19 sellouts are the most for the Isles since they also had 21 full houses at the Old Barn in 2001-02. The Isles have drawn at least 15,000 fans 23 times this season.
Month for the Fans:
February was the busiest home month in Islander history, as they played ten home games this month. The Isles played ten home games three previous times (January 1980, December 1999 and December 2000) but all were in 31-day months.
This was the final game of a stretch in which the Isles played 9 of the final 11 February games at home. The Isles are 7-3-1 in this stretch (5-3-0 at home and 1-0-1 on the road).
The Isles went 9-5-1 in February, tying the second-highest win total for February in franchise history. The Isles went 12-1-1 in February 1982.
The Isles have drawn 158,908 fans to their ten home games this month.
What a Season:
The Isles are 41-21-2 thru 64 games. Only the 1981-82 team had more wins through 64 games. It's the first time since the 2001-02 season (42-28-8-4) that the Isles have won at least 41 games in a season and only the second time in the Post-Cup era.
Most wins in first 64 games:
· 43-14-7 in 1981-82
· 41-21-2 in 2014-15
· 40-13-11 in 1978-79
· 39-23-2 in 1983-84
· 39-14-11 in 1977-78
· 38-17-9 in 1976-77
· 37-17-10 in 1980-81
Most points in first 64 games:
· 93 in 1981-82
· 91 in 1978-79
· 89 in 1977-78
· 85 in 1976-77
· 84 in 2014-15
· 84 in 1980-81
· 80 in 1983-84
Home Sweet Home
The Isles are 23-9-0 on Coliseum ice; it's only the fifth time in club history that the Isles have won at least 23 of their first 32 home games (26-3-3 in 1981-82, 25-2-5 in 1977-78, 24-3-5 in 1978-79 and 23-9-0 in 1983-84).
The Isles have had a season of streaks, going 4-0-0 to open the season and then (in succession) 0-2-0, 2-0-0, 0-3-0, 13-2-0, 0-3-0, 7-1-1, 0-2-0, 6-1-0, 1-4-0, and are 8-3-1 in their last 12.
Winning Streaks (Season)
· 2 streaks of at least 5 games -- First time since the 1987-88 season that the Isles have had two winning streaks of at least five games.
· 6 streaks of at least 4 games -- First time in the Post-Cup era that the Isles have had at least six winning streaks of at least four games. The Isles had seven separate winning streaks of at least four games in their 1983-84 defense of the Stanley Cup.
· 8 streaks of at least 3 games -- First time in the Post-Cup era that the Isles have had at least eight winning streaks of at least three games. The Isles had nine separate winning streaks of at least three games in their 1983-84 defense of the Stanley Cup.
It's only the fifth time in the last 35 games that the Isles have been outshot and the 17 shot differential matches the highest against the Isles this season (26-43 @ NY Rangers on October 14th)
On the season, the Isles have outshot their opponents 2,162-1,796 for a +366 shot differential.
Biggest Differential, Season
· +366 THIS SEASON
· +307 in 1976-77
· +254 in 1986-87
· +152 in 1975-76
Isles had 2,537 shots on goal last season, most since a franchise-record 2,616 in 1992-93. Isles are currently on pace for a record-breaking 2,770 shots this year.
Home and Road
The Islanders are 41-21-2 overall; 23-9-0 at home and 18-12-2 on the road.
Carolina is 24-30-7 overall; 14-11-3 at home and 10-19-4 on the road.
The Isles are 19-4-1 in Division games and are 22-17-1 in games against other divisions. They are 9-8-1 vs. the Atlantic Division, 5-5-0 vs. Central Division, and 8-4-0 vs. the Pacific Division.
The Isles finished last season 10-16-4 against the Met and 24-21-7 against other Divisions.
Metropolitan Hockey Club, Inc.
The Isles are 19-4-1 against the Met Division, and are 12-2-1 in their last 15 division matchups. They are 11-2-0 at home (outscoring opponents 53-34) and 8-2-1 on the road. The Isles are 7-1 in overtime/shootouts against division foes, going 4-0 at home and 3-1 on the road.
The Isles' next division game will be on March 10th vs. the Rangers.
In the Nets
Chad Johnson faced a season-high 41 shots and made 36 saves but falls to 8-8-1 on the season. He is 4-1-0 in his career against Carolina.
Cam Ward made 21 saves and improves to 17-19-4 on the season. Ward, who played in his 501st NHL game, is 18-4-3 in his career against the Isles.
Move over Billy, Ozzy and DiPi
Jaroslav Halak has established a new franchise record with 33 wins in a season.
Jaroslav Halak 33 in 2014-15
Rick DiPietro 32 in 2006-07
Billy Smith 32 in 1981-82
Chris Osgood 32 in 2001-02
The Islanders were 0-1 on the power play, while Carolina was 2-5. It's the 13th time this season that the Isles have allowed at least two power play goals; the Isles are 5-8-0 in those 13 games.
The power play is 3-29 (10.3%) in the last 11 games. The Isles have not scored 2 PP goals in a game since January 4th.
The penalty kill has killed 23 of 27 (85.2%) in the last 10 games; the Isles allowed two goals to Vancouver on February 22nd and two goals to Carolina on February 28th but blanked their other eight opponents.
The Isles are 22-9-0 when they score at least one power play goal and 19-12-2 when they do not. The Isles are 15-16-0 when they allow at least one power play goal and 26-5-2 when they do not.
Three is (Usually) a Magic Number
The Isles are 34-7-1 when they score at least three goals (including shootout winners) and are 7-14-1 when they do not.
One Goal Games
The Isles are 23-5-2 in games decided by a single goal including 10-5-0 in regulation. They are 5-0 in games decided in overtime and are 7-2 in shootouts. Five games have been decided by two goals in which the second goal was an empty-netter. The Isles are 3-2 in those games.
The Isles have tied the club record for 1-goal wins, which was set in 2007-08 when 23 of Isles' 35 wins were by 1 goal.
First Goal (and Second Goal)
The Isles are 25-13-2 when they score first and are 16-8-0 when they allow the opening goal. However, the Isles are 13-0-0 when they allow the opening goal but score the second goal. The Isles have rebounded from 2-0 deficits to win three times this season (New Jersey on December 15th (SO), Pittsburgh on January 16th, and Philadelphia on February 5th)
Second to The One
Jack Capuano is the 2nd winningest coach in Islander history. Capuano is 159-141-41 behind the Islander bench. Among the 9 New York teams, only the Giants' Tom Coughlin and the Yankees' Joe Girardi have led their respective teams longer than Capuano.
Most games coached (Islanders):
1. Al Arbour 1,500
2. Jack Capuano 341
3. Mike Milbury 191
4. Terry Simpson 187
5. Scott Gordon 181
Most wins by Islander coaches:
1. Al Arbour 740
2. Jack Capuano 159
3. Terry Simpson 81
4. Peter Laviolette 77
5. Ted Nolan 74
They Said It
John Tavares: "Kulemin's goal was a big goal, but to give up those two goals late just killed us. We still had an opportunity to get back into it and we just threw it away…. "They looked like the more desperate team. You have to do what you have to do to be ready to play and clearly we weren't good enough from start to finish."
They Tweeted It
@dlee71 I know I've said it before, but those @NYIslanders third sweaters are gorgeous. Best in the league, by far
@MattFromTheHat @91Tavares leading the league (in points). Now if the @NYIslanders could put a string of wins together and hold on to 1st place
@cutzJ81 84 points by the end of feb is still pretty sweet, 20 points in the last 18 games should be easily attainable #isles
(On the disputed goal) "We've been on both sides of that one before. That's a decision Toronto makes and there's nothing we can do about that."
The Isles are 8-3-1 in the front-end and 8-4-0 on the back end of back-to-backs this season. The Isles have swept 5 sets of back-to-backs, are 1-1-0 in six sets and are 0-1-1 in one set.
The next back-to-back set is March 9th in Toronto and March 10th vs. the Rangers.
Leading Ice Men
Travis Hamonic led all Isles with 24:49 of ice-time; Justin Faulk led Carolina in ice-time with 24:44.
Isles record by ice-time leaders: Johnny Boychuk (13-5-0), Travis Hamonic (18-3-2), Lubomir Visnovsky (2-1-0) John Tavares (2-6-0), Thomas Hickey (3-0-0), Nick Leddy (0-3-0), Frans Nielsen (1-0-0), Kyle Okposo (0-1-0), Brian Strait (1-0-0) and Calvin deHaan (1-2-0).
John Tavares led Isles forwards with 22:32 of ice-time. Isles record by Forward ice-time leaders: John Tavares (24-20-2), Kyle Okposo (12-1-0), Ryan Strome (1-0-0), Brock Nelson (1-1-0), Anders Lee (1-0-0), Frans Nielsen (1-0-0), Casey Cizikas (1-0-0), and Josh Bailey (0-1-0).
In the Circle
The Islanders won 26 of 58 draws (45%). John Tavares won 13 of 15 for the Isles but his teammates won only 13 of 43; Jordan Staal won 13 of 20 for Carolina. The Isles won only 17 of 42 draws in the first two periods but won 9 of 16 in the final 20 minutes. The Isles won the only draw on the power play and 3 of 8 draws on the penalty kill.
The Isles out-hit Carolina 33-15. Cal Clutterbuck, Johnny Boychuk and Colin McDonald led the Islanders with 5 hits each.
Martin leads the NHL with 318 hits while Cal Clutterbuck is 2nd with 271. It's the third time in his career Martin has recorded at least 300 hits; he has the two highest totals in NHL history (since 2005):
Most hits, season:
1. Matt Martin, NYI 374 in 2011-12
2. Matt Martin, NYI 359 in 2013-14
3. Cal Clutterbuck, Min 356 in 2009-10
There were no fights in the game. The Isles have been involved in 14 fights this season: Martin (9), Hamonic (3), Lee (1), Strome (1) and 11 of the 14 have been against Metropolitan Division opponents.
Giving Up the Body
The Isles were credited with 23 blocked shots; Travis Hamonic and Brian Streit led the Isles with 4 each.
For the Corsi Crowd
Carolina finished with a total Corsi advantage of 70-46 including 56-31 in the first two periods. The Corsi stat measures shots attempted, both for and against (including blocks).
Anders Lee and Johnny Boychuk led the Isles with +6 even-strength Corsi ratings; Boychuk was on-ice for a team-leading 60% of Corsi For events. John-Michael Liles led Carolina with a +16 rating.
Head of the Class
Islander Captain John Tavares has 380 career points; he is 79 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.
This Team is Deep!
John Tavares has been held pointless 21 times this season and the Isles are 15-6-0 in those games. Prior to this season the Isles had won only 40 of the 151 games in which Tavares was scoreless.
The Islanders fall to 26 games over all-time NHL .500 (1446-1420-451 in 3,317 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 Brock Nelson are the Islanders' reigning ironmen. Leddy has played 316 consecutive regular season NHL games, while Nelson has played 117 consecutive regular season Islander games.
Kyle Okposo, Casey Cizikas, Eric Boulton and Mikhail Grabovski are on injured reserve. Brian Strait replaced Lubomir Visnovsky in the lineup; Matt Donovan was scratched.
The Isles have lost 235 games this season due to injury/illness.
All-time Islander Leader Board:
John Tavares has:
· 166 goals (13th all-time, 2 behind Ziggy Palffy and 18 behind Billy Harris)
· 214 assists (15th all-time, 35 behind Tomas Jonsson and 45 behind Billy Harris)
· 380 points (13th all-time and 63 behind Billy Harris)
· 414 games played (36th among Islander skaters all-time, 8 behind Dave Langevin, 11 behind Greg Gilbert and 12 behind Jason Blake)
Kyle Okposo has:
· 113 goals (24th all-time, 3 behind Ray Ferraro and 5 behind Steve Thomas, Matt Moulson and Mark Parrish)
· 185 assists (18th all-time, 8 behind Pierre Turgeon and 9 behind Frans Nielsen)
· 298 points (18th all-time, 33 behind Ziggy Palffy and 35 behind Tomas Jonsson)
· 436 games played (32nd among Islander skaters all-time, 14 behind Scott Lachance and 22 behind Josh Bailey)
Frans Nielsen has:
· 96 goals (29th all-time, 3 behind Trent Hunter and 5 behind Anders Kallur)
· 194 assists (16th all-time and 19 behind John Tavares)
· 290 points (tied-21st all-time with Alexei Yashin, 2 behind Duane Sutter, 5 behind Mariusz Czerkawski and 8 behind Kyle Okposo)
· 510 games played (21st among Islander skaters, and 4 behind Dave Lewis)
Josh Bailey has:
· 130 assists (tied-33rd all-time with Trent Hunter and 1 behind Jason Blake)
· 208 points (39th all-time, 3 behind Anders Kallur and 5 behind Jean Potvin & Garry Howatt)
· 458 games played (30th among Islander skaters, 1 behind Trent Hunter and 12 behind Mariusz Czerkawski)
Michael Grabner has:
· 89 goals (36th all-time, 3 behind Travis Green and 4 behind Garry Howatt & Greg Gilbert)
Season Series Stats
The Isles win the season series 3 games to 1 (and 6 points to 2).
The loss snapped a 4-game winning streak over Carolina, dating back to last season.
It Happened at the Coliseum … on FEBRUARY 28th
6 years ago tonight (2009): Yann Danis made 31 saves for his second shutout in a week and Sean Bergenheim scored both goals as the Isles blanked Buffalo 2-0.
"Pucks are just hitting me right now," Danis said. "My positioning has been good; I think that's been the key to my game. Also I think the guys are playing really good hockey in front of me."
Scott Gordon was impressed with his goaltender. "Positionally he was great—great recoveries and he tracked the puck. The rebounds he gave up, I don't think they were controllable rebounds, and the ones that were right in front he jumped right on them."
Islander Captain Bill Guerin was a healthy scratch – he would be traded to Pittsburgh in a deadine deal a few days later.
Andrew MacDonald made his NHL debut as the Isles played without the suspended Brendan Witt. MacDonald would be a regular in the Isles lineup for the next five years.
The win raised the Isles' home record to NHL-.500 (13-13-5).
Danis improved to 6-4-2 in his last twelve games, as he recorded his second straight home shutout. Danis has bounced around the NHL/AHL/KHL since then and has not recorded an NHL shutout since.
Also on this date: (1978) – Wayne Merrick and Denis Potvin scored goals exactly one minute apart, early in the third period, as the Isles broke a 2-2 tie and defeated Toronto 4-2. Referee Ron Wicks called only four minor penalties in a preview of a ferocious playoff series between the teams. The Isles improved to 38-13-11 on the season.
All-time, the Isles have played eleven February 28th games at the Coliseum and have compiled a 4-5-2 record on this date at 1255 Hempstead Turnpike in Uniondale.
On The Farm
The Sound Tigers suffered their second loss in two nights in Springfield, falling 3-0 to the Falcons. Bridgeport has lost eight straight games (one shy of a franchise record) to fall to 21-27-5-1 on the season. The Sound Tigers host Wilkes-Barre/Scranton on Sunday at 3pm.
TUESDAY, MARCH 3rd— ISLANDERS AT DALLAS 8:30PM
[MSG+2 (Isles Pre-game at 8:00), 88.7 WRHU-FM, 103.9 WRCN]
[MSG+2 (Isles Pre-game at 8:00), 88.7 WRHU-FM, 103.9 WRCN]
The Isles begin a 4-game road trip on Tuesday in Dallas. The Isles will be looking to complete a sweep of the season series, having earned a 7-5 victory at the Coliseum in October.
The Isles are 4-1-1 in their last six trips to Dallas and are 9-3-3 in their last 15 games overall against the Stars.
The teams met three games in calendar year 2014 and the Isles won all of them by a combined 18-10 score.
Note that this game is 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