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The Skinny: Isles 5, San Jose 3

"The Skinny" By Eric Hornick Game 8 Isles 5, San Jose 3 Anders Lee scored two goals and added an assist, and John T...

Thursday, April 30, 2015

It Happened at the Coliseum … on APRIL 30th

32 years ago tonight (1983) – The Islanders got goals from seven different players as they defeated the Boston Bruins 7-3 to take a 2-1 lead in the Wales Conference Final.

The Isles grabbed a 3-1 lead in the first period on goals by Bob Nystrom, Brent Sutter and Bryan Trottier.

A pair of Hall of Famers, Ray Bourque and Mike Bossy, traded power play goals in the second period and Bourque scored again 84 seconds into the third period to make it a one-goal lead.

That was as close as the Bruins got.  Ken Morrow scored five minutes into the third to restore the 2-goal lead; Denis Potvin and Butch Goring added late goals for the final margin of victory.

Of the seven Isles to score in the game, six were “Core of the Four” players, who were on their way to their fourth straight Stanley Cup.

The Core goalie, Billy Smith, made 33 saves as the Isles were outshot 36-26.

“We played well, that’s what hurts”, Bruin coach Gerry Cheevers told Newsday’s Pat Calabria. “We skated, we took the body…but I don’t want to take anything away from the Islanders.  They won…emphatically.”

Here are some highlights, with Jiggs and Eddie on the call.



Also on this date: (1987) Bryan Trottier scored two goals and added an assist as the Isles defeated Philadelphia 4-2 to force a 7th game in the Patrick Division Finals.   Mike Bossy scored the game’s first goal in what turned out to be his final Coliseum game; it was the 85th and final playoff goal of his injury-shortened career. Kelly Hrudey made 25 saves as the Isles staved off elimination.

Here are some highlights of Games 5 and 6 from ESPN's Tom Mees, including Bossy's final goal:




Also on this date: (1981)  Butch Goring scored two goals, including one while shorthanded as the Isles rallied from a 3-1 deficit for a 7-3 victory over the Rangers to take a 2-0 lead in the series. Anders Kallur also scored shorthanded for the Isles, who were halfway to their four-game sweep of the Blueshirts.


Goring was a popular guy after this one -- he's interviewed here by both Marv Albert and Mike Barry.  Check out Butch's bathrobe -- I wonder if he might have a future in television?




All-time, the Isles have played no regular season and three playoff games on April 30th at the Coliseum; they have compiled a 3-1 playoff record on this date at 1255 Hempstead Turnpike in Uniondale. 

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

It Happened at the Coliseum … on APRIL 29th

33 years ago tonight (1982) Mike Bossy scored two goals and Bob Bourne added two goals and an assist as the Isles took a 2-0 lead in their Conference Final series with Quebec, defeating the Nordiques 5-2.

Wayne Merrick had given the Isles a 1-0 lead in the first period but Marc Tardif tied the game before the period ended.

Bossy owned the second period, scoring twice, as he sandwiched a goal by Peter Stastny, but it was the play of Billy Smith that caught the attention of Michel Bergeron, the Nordique coach. Bergeron told the NY Times’ Parton Keese: “Smith was the difference.  He was tremendous, making saves when they were up 3-2.  If not, we could have won the game.”

Bob Bourne and Bob Nystrom scored third period goals as the Isles put the game away.

There was one fight in the game, and it came with just 27 seconds to play.  Stefan Persson, who basically never fought, battled with a man whose name has been mentioned three times on #ItHappened this week:  Dale Hunter.

Here are some highlights, from Eyewitness News' Spencer Christian:




The Isles would sweep the series with a pair of wins in Quebec City.  Wayne Merrick’s OT goal gave the Isles a 5-4 win in game three; the Isles built a 3-0 lead and survived a late Nordique rally for a 4-2 win in game 4, for their 11th consecutive series win.

Also on this date: (1978) Coliseum ice hosted only one game 7 – it was the only one Islander star Mike Bossy played in.  It didn’t end well, as Lanny McDonald scored at 4:13 of overtime to give Roger Nielsen’s Leafs a 2-1 win in the deciding game.  Denis Potvin had given the Isles a 1-0 lead in the first, but Ian Turnbull’s second period goal caused OT.  “They were probably a little hungrier than we were; to a certain degree they may have outworked us”, Al Arbour told the NY Times.

McDonald’s goal caused a lot of tears, for the Isles and their fans. (One of the Times stories was headlined, “Gillies, Harris in Tears”.)  At the time, some wondered whether it would be the last game in Islander history as the franchise was saddled with debt and owner Roy Boe was in financial trouble.  The Isles survived, and made Long Island their home for another 37 years … less two days.


Here's McDonald's goal (from Hockey Night); it was the last one called by John Sterling as the radio voice of the Islanders:



All-time, the Isles have played no regular season and two playoff games on April 29th at the Coliseum; they have compiled a 1-1 playoff record on this date at 1255 Hempstead Turnpike in Uniondale. 

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

It Happened at the Coliseum … on APRIL 28th

22 years ago tonight (1993) Dale Hunter had just given away the game and the series.  Then he gave away his dignity. Perhaps NBC’s Keith Jones, who played in the game, said it best in an interview this week when he noted “and about 20 seconds later he hit (Pierre) Turgeon from behind”. The Isles eliminated the Caps in 6 games; they never had another happy handshake on Coliseum ice.

Hunter ironically had given the Caps a 1-0 lead in the first period, but Steve Thomas tied it before the first period was over.  Benoit Hogue and Brad Dalgarno scored in the middle session to make it 3-1 Isles.  Travis Green appeared to put the game out of reach at 9:58 of the third, and when Turgeon scored off the Hunter giveaway 1:31 later all that Hunter could do was attack a man celebrating the series-clinching goal.

Turgeon suffered an upper-body injury, only in those days they called it a separated shoulder. He would not play again until game 7 vs. Pittsburgh.  Hunter was ejected and later suspended for 21 games by a rookie commissioner named Gary Bettman -- it was the longest suspension in NHL history at the time, other than a lifetime ban given to Boston’s Billy Coutu in 1927.

The Caps would score two late goals to make the score respectable but the Isles clinched their first playoff series since 1987 (also vs. Washington) and their first on Coliseum ice since clinching their 19th consecutive series win (in 1984 vs Montreal).

Here are some highlights, with Jiggs and Eddie:




And here's some local news coverage, from ABC (Scott Clark),  NBC (Len Berman), CBS (Rock Rote), as well as Dan Patrick (SportsCenter).



Also on this date: (1979) Denis Potvin beat John Davidson for the overtime goal at 8:02 of the extra session as the Isles beat the Rangers, 4-3, evening their series at 1 game each. It was one of two overtime goals for Potvin; the other came in game 1 of the 1980 Stanley Cup Final in Philadelphia.

Those Rangers made a famous commercial along the way...




Also on this date: (1981) The Isles of the Cup Era had so many weapons. John Tonelli scored twice as the Isles rallied from 1-0 and 2-1 deficits for a 5-2 win over the Rangers in game 1 of the Stanley Cup semi-finals. Duane Sutter, Mike McEwen and Billy Carroll had the other goals for the Champs.

Al Albert was in the studio and brother Marv Albert had the live coverage from the Coliseum for Channel 4; Channel 7 coverage is also included.





Also on this date: (1984) Trailing 2 games to 0, the Isles got a pair of goals from Greg Gilbert as they raced to a 5-0 lead, and defeated Montreal 5-2.  The 5 goals were scored against a rookie netminder named Steve Penney, who had blanked the Isles in game 1 of the series and beaten them again in game 2.

Here are the highlights:


Also on this date: (2002) Prior to Sunday, the last time the Isles had won a game 6 to force a game 7 was in 2002.  Their 5-3 win over Toronto evened the series at 3 games each.  Mariusz Czerkawski scored twice for the Isles; Kip Miller had a goal and 2 assists. Eric Cairns was involved in a well-remembered brawl in the game’s final minute.


Here are some highlights from Hockey Night:




And here are two fights, including one that made Eric Cairns a Coliseum legend.  Here's Howie and Joe:



All-time, the Isles have played no regular season and six playoff games on April 28th at the Coliseum; they have compiled a 6-0 playoff record on this date at 1255 Hempstead Turnpike in Uniondale. 

The Skinny: Washington 2, Isles 1 (Caps win series, 4 games to 3)

“The Skinny”  


By Eric Hornick

Eastern Conference First Round Game 7
Washington 2, Isles 1 [Caps win series, 4 games to 3]
The Barn door has shut closed.  Evgeny Kuznetsov broke a 1-1 tie with 7:18 remaining in the third period as the Washington Capitals defeated the Islanders 2-1 to win the Eastern Conference First Round series in 7 hard-fought games before a sellout crowd of 18,506 at Verizon Center.
The Capitals advance to face the Rangers in the second round of the playoffs.

The Scoring:

1st Period
No scoring

2nd Period
18:35 WSH Joel Ward (1)  Assists: Brooks Orpik, Alex Ovechkin

3rd Period
3:13  NYI Frans Nielsen (1)  Assists: Thomas Hickey, Ryan Strome         
12:42 WSH Evgeny Kuznetsov (3) Assists: Jason Chimera, John Carlson

The Series
·         WED APRIL 15, 2015    ISLANDERS 4,  Washington 1   
·         FRI APRIL 17, 2015      Washington 4, ISLANDERS 3                
·         SUN APRIL 19, 2015     ISLANDERS 2,  Washington 1  (OT)       
·         TUE APRIL 21, 2015     Washington 2,  ISLANDERS 1 (OT)       
·         THU APRIL 23, 2015     Washington 5,  ISLANDERS 1               
·         SAT APRIL 25, 2015     ISLANDERS 3, Washington 1 
·         MON APRIL 27, 2015    Washington 2,  ISLANDERS 1

The Skinny
The Isles finished with only 11 shots, their fewest ever in a playoff game; the 11 shots are the fewest in a game 7 by any team in at least 27 years…John Tavares led the Isles in scoring in the series with 6 points; Josh Bailey and Nick Leddy each had 5; Nicklas Backstrom led Washington with 6 points... The Caps outscored the Isles 16-15 in the series…The Isles are 26-19 when facing elimination…The Islander forwards had a total of three shots on goal in the game…Joel Ward’s goal was his 2nd career game 7 goal; Frans Nielsen’s tally was his first-ever playoff goal.

Game 7 history
This was the 3,589th game in Isles history (regular season/playoffs) but only the 8th game 7:
26-Apr-75
@
Pittsburgh
QF
1975
1
0
W
13-May-75
@
Philadelphia
SF
1975
1
4
L
29-Apr-78
Vs
Toronto
QF
1978
1
2
L
18-Apr-87
@
Washington
DSF
1987
3
2
W
02-May-87
@
Philadelphia
DF
1987
1
5
L
14-May-93
@
Pittsburgh
DF
1993
4
3
W
30-Apr-02
@
Toronto
CQF
2002
2
4
L
27-Apr-14
@
Washington
1st
2015
1
2
L

The Isles fall to 3-5 all-time in Game 7 (0-1 at home, 3-4 on the road). The Isles have played four other winner-take-all games (1975 game 3 vs. Rangers, 1982 game 5 vs. Pittsburgh, 1984 game 5 vs. the Rangers, 1985 game 5 vs. Washington) and won them all.
Washington improves to 4-9 all-time in game 7.
This was the second time the Isles and Caps have met in a game 7, with Pat LaFontaine’s Easter Epic game being the only previous meeting.

From the Geniuses at the Elias Sports Bureau
Kuznetsov is the first Capitals rookie to score a game-winning goal in a game 7.

A Familiar Playoff Foe
This was the 7th meeting of the Isles and Washington in the playoffs (Isles are 5-2 and have won 21 of 37 games)
·         1983 Patrick Division Semi-Finals  Isles won series 3-1
·         1984 Patrick Division Finals  Isles won series 4-1
·         1985 Patrick Division Semi-Finals  Isles won series 3-2
·         1986 Patrick Division Semi-Finals  Caps won series 3-0 (Arbour retired thereafter)
·         1987 Patrick Division Semi-Finals  Isles won series 4-3 (LaFontaine 4 OT; only playoff series won by anyone other than Arbour)
·         1993 Patrick Division Semi-Finals  Isles won series 4-2
·         2015 Eastern Conference First Round  Caps won series 4-3

Playoffs All-time
The Isles fall to 139-114 in 253 all-time playoff games.  They are 80-41 at home and 59-73 on the road. The Isles were 77-32 in home playoff games from 1975 to 2002, but won only three of their last 12 home games in the Barn.

Year of the Fan:
The Isles sold-out 27 of their 41 regular season home dates this season and also sold out their three home playoff dates.  Counting regular season and playoffs together, the Isles sold out the final 14 games and drew at least 15,000 fans 35 times this season (32 regular season and 3 playoff).

Home Sweet Home
The Isles went 25-14-2 on Coliseum ice, equaling their most home wins since 1984-85 (they finished 25-11-4-1 in 2003-04 and went 26-11-3 in 1984-85).
The Isles went 831-610-224 in 1,665 regular season games all-time at the Coliseum.

Road Warriors
The Isles finished the regular season 22-14-5 on the road, including 6-2-4 in their last 12.  The Isles have won at least 20 road games in consecutive seasons for the second time in franchise history (1981-82 and 1982-83).

The Shots:
Isles              3-4-4=11
Washington 11-10-5=26

The Caps outshot the Isles 221-199.  The team with more shots won five of the seven games.

The Isles outshot 61 of their 82 opponents in the regular season but outshot the Caps only three out of seven times in this series. The 61 times outshooting their opponent is the highest total in the NHL this season.

In the Nets
Jaroslav Halak made 24 saves and falls to 3-4 in this series. He is 13-15 all-time in playoff games.
Braden Holtby made 10 saves to improve to 3-3 in this series and 13-14 all-time in playoff games.
Halak is now 6-2 in his career when his team is facing elimination, including 2-1 in game 7s.

Power Plays
The Islanders were 0-1 on the power play with 0 shots, while Washington did not have a power play.
For the series, the Isles were 0-14 (with 22 shots) while the Caps were 2-13 (with 25 shots).
The Isles were the only team in this year’s playoffs who have not scored a power play goal.

Three is a Magic Number
The Isles went 40-8-4 in the regular season when they scored at least three goals (including shootout winners) and are 7-20-3 when they did not. 
In the playoffs, the Isles were 2-1 when scoring at least three goals and 1-3 when they did not.

One Goal Games
The Isles are 1-3 in playoff games decided by a single goal; they are 0-2 in games decided in regulation and are 1-1 in games decided in overtime.  They are also 1-0 in games decided by two goals, where the second goal is an empty net goal.

First Goal
The Isles are 3-2 when they score first and are 0-2 when they allow the opening goal.   

Coach Cappy
Jack Capuano is now 5-8 in playoff games 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.
Capuano is only the 4th Isles coach to lead at least 2 Islander teams to the playoffs, joining Al Arbour, Terry Simpson, and Peter Laviolette.

Most playoff wins by Islander coaches:
·         Al Arbour 123
·         Terry Simpson 9
·         Jack Capuano 5
·         Peter Laviolette 4
·         Ted Nolan 1
·         Steve Stirling 1

Most playoff games coached (Islanders):
·         Al Arbour 209
·         Terry Simpson 20
·         Jack Capuano 13
·         Peter Laviolette 12
·         Steve Stirling 5
·         Ted Nolan 5

Most playoff series wins:
·         Al Arbour 29
·         Terry Simpson 1

Most overtime wins/overtime record:
·         Al Arbour 26  (26-9)
·         Terry Simpson 3  (3-0)
·         Jack Capuano 1  (1-3)
·         Peter Laviolette 0 (0-1)
·         Steve Stirling 0 (0-1)

They Said It
John Tavares: “It’s hard to believe it really over…we believed that we would win the series.”
Johnny Boychuk: “It’s a tough one to swallow…it’s a learning experience for everyone in the room.”

They Tweeted It
@AaronHowie Fun Fact: Cal Clutterbuck scored the final goal at Nassau Coliseum. That should be fun to use in trivia soon. #Isles
@RobPatch29 Really excited for what the future holds for the #Isles. Hopefully this is just the start of something good.
@4_slythErin I couldn't have asked for a better place to grow up. I sure am going to miss this barn. #isles

The Coach
“We had a little breakdown in the third period…it’s tough to swallow after the year we had.”

Leading Ice Men
Nick Leddy led all Isles with 26:15 of ice-time. Matt Niskanen led Washington in ice-time with 23:05.

Isles playoff record by ice-time leaders: Johnny Boychuk (2-3), Nick Leddy (1-1)
John Tavares led Isles forwards with 20:40 of ice-time. Isles playoff record by Forward ice-time leaders: John Tavares (2-2), Kyle Okposo (1-1), Nikolay Kulemin (0-1). 

In the Circle
The Islanders won 21 of 53 draws (40%).  No Islander won more than he lost; Nicklas Backstrom won 16 of 21 for Washington. The Isles won 8 of 14 draws in their own zone, but lost 26 of 39 in the other zones. The Isles won 0 of 1 draws on the power play and 0 of 0 draws on the penalty kill.

Face-offs Game by Game:
·         Game 1: Isles 23, Caps 39
·         Game 2: Isles 27, Caps 28
·         Game 3: Isles 29, Caps 30
·         Game 4: Isles 32, Caps 33
·         Game 5: Isles 18, Caps 31
·         Game 6: Isles 33, Caps 40
·         Game 7: Isles 21, Caps 32
·         Series: Isles 183, Caps 233

The Caps  won the face-off battle in all 7 games, although the difference was only one face-off in games 2, 3, and 4. 
Jay Beagle won 56 of 83 draws in the series (67.5%); Overall, Washington won 56.0% of the draws.

Heavy Hitters
The Isles out-hit Washington 54-46. Matt Martin, Colin McDonald and Scott Mayfield led the Isles with 7 hits; Alex Ovechkin and Brooks Orpik had 7 hits for Washington.
There were no fights in the game.  The only fight of the series came in game 5 when Anders Lee fought Tom Wilson.

Hits Game by Game:
·         Game 1: Isles 36, Caps 46
·         Game 2: Isles 38, Caps 59
·         Game 3: Isles 44, Caps 43
·         Game 4: Isles 50, Caps 38
·         Game 5  Isles 49, Caps 49
·         Game 6 Isles 46, Caps 32
·         Game 7: Isles 54, Caps 46
·         Series: Isles 317, Caps 313
Martin had 52 hits in the series, which leads the NHL in the post-season.  Martin has led the league in hits in each of the last 4 regular seasons.

Giving Up the Body
The Isles were credited with 20 blocked shots; Thomas Hickey led the team with 4.

For the Corsi Crowd
The Caps finished with a total Corsi advantage of 60-49, including a 41-11 margin over the final 11 minutes of the first period and the entire second period. The Corsi stat measures shots attempted, both for and against (including blocks).
Nick Leddy led the Isles with a +6 even-strength Corsi rating; Matt Martin was on-ice for a team-leading 60% of Corsi For events. Mike Green led Washington with a +10 rating.

Total Corsi Game by Game:
·         Game 1: Isles 65, Caps 55
·         Game 2: Isles 51, Caps 82
·         Game 3: Isles 76, Caps 57
·         Game 4: Isles 78, Caps 66
·         Game 5: Isles 60, Caps 67
·         Game 6: Isles 66, Caps 65
·         Game 7: Isles 49, Caps 60
·         Series: Isles 445, Caps 452

Missing Men
Injured: Lubomir Visnovsky, Travis Hamonic and Calvin deHaan.
Healthy extras: Colin McDonald, Eric Boulton, Michael Grabner, Anders Lee, Tyler Kennedy and Griffin Reinhart.  Additionally, Ryan Pulock, Matt Carkner, Kael Mouellierat, Johan Sundstrom and Kevin Poulin were recalled from Bridgeport following the end of the Sound Tigers’ season; all were scratched.
The Isles lost 16 games this post-season due to injury/illness.

It Happened at the Coliseum … on APRIL 27th
33 years ago tonight (1982) The Coliseum has hosted only one game on this date, a 4-1 Islander win over Quebec in the Wales Conference Finals.

The Isles grabbed the lead in the first period on a Bryan Trottier power play goal that was scored with Dale Hunter (yes, that Dale Hunter) in the penalty box.

Butch Goring doubled the advantage with a power play goal of his own in the second period; Isles held a 24-14 shot advantage through 40 minutes as well as a 2-0 lead.

Peter Stastny got the Nords on the scoreboard with a power play tally of his own at 7:02 of the third period, and the game stayed tight until Denis Potvin and Wayne Merrick scored at 13:46 and 15:40 to put the game away.

All-time, the Isles have played just one playoff game on April 27th at the Coliseum; they have compiled a 1-0 playoff record on this date at 1255 Hempstead Turnpike in Uniondale.

On The Farm
The Sound Tigers finished their season with a record of 28-40-7-1. Kael Mouellierat led the Tigers in goals with 24 this season, while Alan Quine led in assists (38) and points (61).  Colton Gillies led Bridgeport in +/- with a +4 rating.
Rookie defensemen Griffin Reinhart went 7-15-22 in 59 games, while fellow first round pick Ryan Pulock went 17-12-29.  Pulock led the Sound Tigers, all AHL rookies and all AHL defensemen with 13 power play goals.
Kevin Poulin finished the season with a 16-21-7 record and a 2.87 GAA.

Up Next
Summer Time … and the Move to Brooklyn.

And Finally…
89 games, 89 editions of The Skinny.  It’s a perfect season, at least in attendance.  Thanks to all who have contributed to The Skinny this season and special thanks to you, for reading.

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.


Monday, April 27, 2015

It Happened at the Coliseum … on APRIL 27th

33 years ago tonight (1982) The Coliseum has hosted only one game on this date, a 4-1 Islander win over Quebec in the Wales Conference Finals.

The Isles grabbed the lead in the first period on a Bryan Trottier power play goal.  The Nordique in the penalty box will have a much bigger role in tomorrow’s “It Happened” – his name was Dale Hunter.

Butch Goring doubled the advantage with a power play goal of his own in the second period; Isles held a 24-14 shot advantage through 40 minutes as well as a 2-0 lead.

Peter Stastny got the Nords on the scoreboard with a power play tally of his own at 7:02 of the third period, and the game stayed tight until Denis Potvin and Wayne Merrick scored at 13:46 and 15:40 to put the game away. 

Marv Albert had the highlights of all 4 Islander goals on NewsCenter 4:



All-time, the Isles have played just one playoff game on April 27th at the Coliseum; they have compiled a 1-0 playoff record on this date at 1255 Hempstead Turnpike in Uniondale.

Will there be more hockey games at 1255 Hempstead Turnpike?  Find out tonight as the Isles face Washington in Game 7.  Pre-game at 7:00pm, opening faceoff at 7:30pm and a full one hour post-game – all on MSG+!

Sunday, April 26, 2015

It Happened at the Coliseum … on APRIL 26th

John Davidson
36 years ago tonight (1979) The upset-minded Rangers came to Coliseum and earned a 4-1 win over the Islanders in game 1 of what would become the last series the Isles would lose for 5 years.

Bryan Trottier gave the Isles a 1-0 lead by goals by Don Murdoch and Eddie Johnstone turned the game the Rangers’ way before the first period was over.

The Rangers got second period goals from both Ron Duguay and Bobby Sheehan; John Davidson needed to make only 21 saves for the Rangers, who out-shot the Isles 28-11 in the first two periods and 38-22 in the game.

Also on this date: (1987) Tim Kerr scored two goals and added an assist as the Isles fell 6-4 to Philadelphia in Game 4 of the Patrick Division finals.  The Flyers erased three different one-goal Islander leads enroute to the victory; Bryan Trottier had a goal and an assist for the Isles, who now trailed the series 3 games to 1.


All-time, the Isles have played no regular season and two playoff games on April 26th at the Coliseum; they have compiled an 0-2 playoff record on this date at 1255 Hempstead Turnpike in Uniondale. 

The Skinny: Isles 3, Washington 1

"The Skinny"  

By Eric Hornick
Eastern Conference First Round Game 6
Isles 3, Washington 1 [Series tied, 3 games to 3]

The Old Barn still has life. Nikolay Kulemin broke a 1-1 tie midway through the third period and Cal Clutterbuck added an empty net goal as the Islanders defeated the Washington Capitals 3-1 in Game 6 of their Eastern Conference First Round series before a sellout crowd of 16,170 at the Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum.

The series is even 3 games to 3, with the decisive game set to be played in the District on Monday at 7:30.

The Scoring:
1ST PERIOD
06:56    NYI       John Tavares (2) ASST: Ryan Strome (1), Nick Leddy (4) 1 - 0 NYI          
19:55    WSH     PPG - John Carlson (1) ASST: Alex Ovechkin (2), Troy Brouwer (2) 1 - 1 Tie        
2ND PERIOD
NONE
3RD PERIOD
10:33    NYI       Nikolay Kulemin (1) ASST: Nick Leddy (5), John Tavares (4)        2 - 1 NYI          
19:07    NYI       EN - Cal Clutterbuck (2) ASST: Johnny Boychuk (2)        3 - 1 NYI

The Series
·         WED APRIL 15, 2015    ISLANDERS 4,  Washington 1   
·         FRI APRIL 17, 2015      Washington 4, ISLANDERS 3                
·         SUN APRIL 19, 2015     ISLANDERS 2,  Washington 1  (OT)       
·         TUE APRIL 21, 2015     Washington 2,  ISLANDERS 1 (OT)       
·         THU APRIL 23, 2015     Washington 5,  ISLANDERS 1               
·         SAT APRIL 25, 2015     ISLANDERS 3, Washington 1 
·         MON APRIL 27, 2015    ISLANDERS @ Washington 7:30pm (MSG+)

The Skinny
Nick Leddy assisted on the first two Islander goals, giving him assists in four straight games; both Leddy and John Tavares were +3 in the game…Kulemin's goal was the first third period goal by the Isles in the third period since an empty-netter in game 1…It was Kulemin's first career playoff goal and his 100th regular season/playoff goal… John Tavares leads the Isles in scoring in the series with 6 points; Josh Bailey and Nick Leddy each has 5; Nicklas Backstrom leads Washington with 6 points...Clutterbuck's empty-netter evened the scoring for the series 14-14.

From the Geniuses at the Elias Sports Bureau
The Isles have scored first in five games of a playoff series for only the 2nd time in team history (they scored first in all five games vs Pittsburgh in 1982)

Daylight Staving Time
The Islanders staved off elimination for the 26th times in 44 tries. Of course the other eighteen times they've ended up on the wrong side of a handshake.
The Isles improve to 13-2 all-time at home in game 6's, losing only to Montreal in 1977 and to Pittsburgh in 2013. They are 7-2 at home when facing elimination in game 6 (and are a perfect 6-0 with an opportunity to clinch a series in game 6).

A Familiar Playoff Foe
This is the 7th meeting of the Isles and Washington in the playoffs (Isles are 5-1 and have won 21 of 36 games)
·         1983 Patrick Division Semi-Finals  Isles won series 3-1
·         1984 Patrick Division Finals  Isles won series 4-1
·         1985 Patrick Division Semi-Finals  Isles won series 3-2
·         1986 Patrick Division Semi-Finals  Caps won series 3-0 (Arbour retired thereafter)
·         1987 Patrick Division Semi-Finals  Isles won series 4-3 (LaFontaine 4 OT; only playoff series won by anyone other than Arbour)
·         1993 Patrick Division Semi-Finals  Isles won series 4-2
·         2015 Eastern Conference First Round  Series tied 3-3

Overtime is (Usually) Our Time
The Isles have played more playoff OT games with Washington (9) than any other opponent; their six OT wins vs. Washington matches the six that they have against the Rangers (6-0) for the most against any opponent.
04/13/84
Vs
Anders Kallur
W
07:35
04/10/85
@
Alan Haworth
L
02:28
04/11/85
@
Mike Gartner
L
21:23
04/18/87
@
Pat LaFontaine
W
68:47
04/20/93
@
Brian Mullen
W
34:50
04/22/93
Vs
Ray Ferraro
W
04:46
04/24/93
Vs
Ray Ferraro
W
25:40
04/19/15
Vs
John Tavares
W
00:15
04/21/15
Vs
Nicklas Backstrom
L
11:09
The Isles are the most successful team in Stanley Cup overtime, winning 30 and losing 14, but they have lost seven of their last eight OT games.
The Isles are 16-7 in 23 overtime games played at the Coliseum and are 14-7 on the road.

Playoffs All-time
The Isles fall to 139-113 in 252 all-time playoff games.  They are 80-41 at home and 59-72 on the road. The Isles were 77-32 in home playoff games from 1975 to 2002, but this was only their third win in their last 12 home games.

Year of the Fan:
The Isles sold-out 27 of their 41 regular season home dates this season and have also sold out their three home playoff dates.  Counting regular season and playoffs together, the Isles have sold out 14 straight games and have drawn at least 15,000 fans 35 times this season (32 regular season and 3 playoff).

Home Sweet Home
The Isles went 25-14-2 on Coliseum ice, equaling their most home wins since 1984-85 (they finished 25-11-4-1 in 2003-04 and went 26-11-3 in 1984-85).
The Isles went 831-610-224 in 1,665 regular season games all-time at the Coliseum.

Road Warriors
The Isles finished the regular season 22-14-5 on the road, including 6-2-4 in their last 12.  The Isles have won at least 20 road games in consecutive seasons for the second time in franchise history (1981-82 and 1982-83).

The Shots:
Isles              9-17-12=38
Washington 16-10-13=39
The Caps have outshot the Isles 195-188 through six games of this series.  The team with more shots has won four of the six games.
The Isles outshot 61 of their 82 opponents in the regular season and have outshot the Caps three out of six times in this series. The 61 times outshooting their opponent is the highest total in the NHL this season.

In the Nets
Jaroslav Halak made 38 saves and improves to 3-3 in this series. He is 13-14 all-time in playoff games.
Braden Holtby made 35 saves to fall to 2-3 in this series and 12-14 all-time in playoff games.
Halak is now 6-1 in his career with a 1.72 GAA & a .956 SV% when his team is facing elimination.

Power Plays
The Islanders were 0-1 on the power play with 0 shots, while Washington was 1-3 with 8 shots.
For the series, the Isles are 0-13 (with 22 shots) while the Caps are 2-13 (with 25 shots).
The Isles are the only team in this year's playoffs who have not scored a power play goal.

Three is a Magic Number
The Isles went 40-8-4 in the regular season when they scored at least three goals (including shootout winners) and are 7-20-3 when they did not. 
In the playoffs, the Isles are 2-1 when scoring at least three goals and 1-2 when they do not.

One Goal Games
The Isles are 1-2 in playoff games decided by a single goal; they are 0-1 in games decided in regulation and are 1-1 in games decided in overtime.  They are also 1-0 in games decided by two goals, where the second goal is an empty net goal.

First Goal
The Isles are 3-2 when they score first and are 0-1 when they allow the opening goal.   

Coach Cappy
Jack Capuano is now 5-7 in playoff games 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.
Capuano is only the 4th Isles coach to lead at least 2 Islander teams to the playoffs, joining Al Arbour, Terry Simpson, and Peter Laviolette.

Most playoff wins by Islander coaches:
·         Al Arbour 123
·         Terry Simpson 9
·         Jack Capuano 5
·         Peter Laviolette 4
·         Ted Nolan 1
·         Steve Stirling 1

Most playoff games coached (Islanders):
·         Al Arbour 209
·         Terry Simpson 20
·         Jack Capuano 12
·         Peter Laviolette 12
·         Steve Stirling 5
·         Ted Nolan 5

Most playoff series wins:
·         Al Arbour 29
·         Terry Simpson 1

Most overtime wins/overtime record:
·         Al Arbour 26  (26-9)
·         Terry Simpson 3  (3-0)
·         Jack Capuano 1  (1-3)
·         Peter Laviolette 0 (0-1)
·         Steve Stirling 0 (0-1)

They Said It
John Tavares: "We knew we had to win to keep going. That's all it really comes down to. It's our last year here and we don't want it to end. Now, we have an opportunity to keep playing."
Nikolay Kulemin: "I saw John get hit badly and then open space. There was a chance to score, so I took it."
Johnny Boychuk: ""We have some work ahead of us. It'll be a challenge. I think we're up for it."

They Tweeted It
@mattmoro13 Cool to hear @WRHUSports call of the Kulemin goal on @FOXSportsLive. Kinger spectacular as always #Isles
@bigpeach65 I finally have my islanders moment, couldn't be happier, worth every penny! #beLIeve #isles #rockthebarn
@islesfan28 Great job by defense today. Kudos to Strait, Donovan and Mayfield for holding their own. #isles
@Ryan_Wombat91 Nick Leddy has quietly got himself 5 points #isles
@Dyannot What a great game today! They played hard and for 60 min. Happy to have been there! BeLIeve.

The Coach
"We respect them, but we don't fear anybody. That has been our attitude all year. We just keep coming. We're not going to go away."

Leading Ice Men
Nick Leddy led all Isles with 28:59 of ice-time. John Carlson led Washington in ice-time with 25:17.

Isles playoff record by ice-time leaders: Johnny Boychuk (2-3)
Kyle Okposo led Isles forwards with 16:55 of ice-time. Isles playoff record by Forward ice-time leaders: John Tavares (2-1), Kyle Okposo (1-1), Nikolay Kulemin (0-1). 

In the Circle
The Islanders won 33 of 73 draws (45%).  Mikhail Grabovski won 9 of 13 draws for the Isles but his teammates won only 24 of 60; Jay Beagle won 15 of 19 for Washington. The Isles won 30 of 54 draws in the first and third periods, but lost 16 of 19 in the middle period. The Isles won 0 of 1 draws on the power play and 6 of 8 draws on the penalty kill.

Face-offs Game by Game:
·         Game 1: Isles 23, Caps 39
·         Game 2: Isles 27, Caps 28
·         Game 3: Isles 29, Caps 30
·         Game 4: Isles 32, Caps 33
·         Game 5: Isles 18, Caps 31
·         Game 6: Isles 33, Caps 40
·         Series: Isles 162, Caps 201
The Caps have won the face-off battle in all 6 games, although the difference was only one face-off in games 2, 3, and 4. 
Jay Beagle has won 46 of 69 draws in the season (66.7%, best in the playoffs); Overall, Washington has won 55.4% of the draws.

Heavy Hitters
The Isles out-hit Washington 46-32. Matt Martin led the Isles with 11 hits while Cal Clutterbuck added 7; Alex Ovechkin had 5 hits for Washington.
There were no fights in the game.  The only fight of the series came in game 5 when Anders Lee fought Tom Wilson.

Hits Game by Game:
·         Game 1: Isles 36, Caps 46
·         Game 2: Isles 38, Caps 59
·         Game 3: Isles 44, Caps 43
·         Game 4: Isles 50, Caps 38
·         Game 5  Isles 49, Caps 49
·         Game 6 Isles 46, Caps 32
·         Series: Isles 263, Caps 267
Martin now has 45 hits in the series, which leads the NHL in the post-season.  Martin has led the league in hits in each of the last 4 regular seasons.

Giving Up the Body
The Isles were credited with 14 blocked shots; Johnny Boychuk led the team with 6.

For the Corsi Crowd
The Isles finished with a total Corsi advantage of 66-65, including 24-15 in the second period. The Corsi stat measures shots attempted, both for and against (including blocks).
Matt Martin led the Isles with a +9 even-strength Corsi rating; Martin was on-ice for a team-leading 68% of Corsi For events. John Carlson led Washington with a +11 rating.

Total Corsi Game by Game:
·         Game 1: Isles 65, Caps 55
·         Game 2: Isles 51, Caps 82
·         Game 3: Isles 76, Caps 57
·         Game 4: Isles 78, Caps 66
·         Game 5: Isles 60, Caps 67
·         Game 6: Isles 66, Caps 65
·         Series: Isles 396, Caps 392

Missing Men
Matt Donovan, Scott Mayfield, Brock Nelson and Colin McDonald replaced Calvin deHaan (injured), Griffin Reinhart, Anders Lee and Tyler Kennedy in the lineup.
Injured: Lubomir Visnovsky, Travis Hamonic and Calvin deHaan.
Healthy extras: Colin McDonald, Eric Boulton, Michael Grabner, Anders Lee, Tyler Kennedy and Griffin Reinhart.  Additionally, Ryan Pulock, Matt Carkner, Kael Mouellierat, Johan Sundstrom and Kevin Poulin were recalled from Bridgeport following the end of the Sound Tigers' season; all were scratched.
The Isles have lost 13 games this post-season due to injury/illness.

It Happened at the Coliseum … on APRIL 25th
37 years ago tonight (1978) – Bob Nystrom scored the first of his franchise-record four overtime goals as the Islanders took a 3-2 lead in their quarter-final series with a 2-1 win over the Toronto Maple Leafs.
After a scoreless first period, Ian Turnbull gave the Maple Leafs a 1-0 lead early in the second period.  Denis Potvin knotted the game for the Isles at 13:39 of the middle session.

Neither team scored in the final 26 minutes of regulation, or in the first eight minutes of the overtime. 
Nystrom's goal at 8:02 of the extra session, over the left shoulder of Toronto goaltender Mike Palmateer, gave the Isles the victory and a 3-2 lead in the series. "I know it's something I'll carry with me for a long time", Nystrom told Newsday's Joe Gergen.
Both Palmateer and Islander goalie Chico Resch were sensational in net.  "Those two bleepin' pipsqueaks looked more like they were 6'4" and 250 pounds", noted Denis Potvin.
The Isles outshot the Leafs 40-30, as they "held serve" in the series. 8:02 proved to be a lucky time for the Isles; Denis Potvin's overtime goal against the Rangers in 1979 was also scored at 8:02
Despite being the home team and breaking a 2-2 tie in the series, the Isles lost game 6 on the road and game 7 at home – the Isles need the 2015 Capitals to follow that formula.
.
Also on this date: (1985) – Mike Bossy scored his 82nd playoff goal, tying Maurice Richard's then-Stanley Cup record, as the Isles staved off elimination with a 6-2 win over Philadelphia. Bossy also had two assists as the Isles built a 4-0 lead and coasted to the win.
All-time, the Isles have played no regular season and three playoff games on April 25th at the Coliseum; they have compiled a 3-0 playoff record on this date at 1255 Hempstead Turnpike in Uniondale. 

On The Farm
The Sound Tigers finished their season with a record of 28-40-7-1. Kael Mouellierat led the Tigers in goals with 24 this season, while Alan Quine led in assists (38) and points (61).  Colton Gillies led Bridgeport in +/- with a +4 rating.
Rookie defensemen Griffin Reinhart went 7-15-22 in 59 games, while fellow first round pick Ryan Pulock went 17-12-29.  Pulock led the Sound Tigers, all AHL rookies and all AHL defensemen with 13 power play goals.
Kevin Poulin finished the season with a 16-21-7 record and a 2.87 GAA.

Up Next
Eastern Conference First Round – Game 7
MONDAY, APRIL 27th – ISLANDERS AT WASHINGTON 7:30pm
[MSG+/MSG [Isles Pre-game at 7:00], 88.7 WRHU-FM, 103.9 WRCN]

The Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum has hosted 1,786 games (regular season/playoffs). For there to be at least 1,787, the Isles will need to defeat Washington on Monday in Game 7.

This will be the 3,589th game in Isles history (regular season/playoffs) but only the 8th game 7:
26-Apr-75
@
Pittsburgh
QF
1975
1
0
W
13-May-75
@
Philadelphia
SF
1975
1
4
L
29-Apr-78
Vs
Toronto
QF
1978
1
2
L
18-Apr-87
@
Washington
DSF
1987
3
2
W
02-May-87
@
Philadelphia
DF
1987
1
5
L
14-May-93
@
Pittsburgh
DF
1993
4
3
W
30-Apr-02
@
Toronto
CQF
2002
2
4
L
The Isles are 3-4 all-time in Game 7 (0-1 at home, 3-3 on the road). The Isles have played 4 other winner-take-all games (1975 game 3 vs. Rangers, 1982 game 5 vs. Pittsburgh, 1984 vs. the Rangers, 1985 game 5 vs. Washington) and won them all.
Washington is 3-9 all-time in game 7.

This will be the second time the Isles and Caps have met in a game 7, with Pat LaFontaine's Easter Epic game being the only previous meeting.

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