By Eric Hornick
Isles 4, New Jersey 0
Marek Zidlicky became the oldest player in Islander history to score two goals in a game and the first defensemen to do so in over 4 ½ years as the Islanders earned a sweep of their back-to-back games this weekend with a 4-0 whitewash of the New Jersey Devils before a crowd of 13,259 at Barclays Center. With the win, the Islanders extended their point streak to ten games (8-0-2), moved 10 games over NHL-.500 and moved within two points of the Eastern Conference lead as they took over 2nd place in the Metropolitan Division, ahead of the idle New York Rangers.
07:43 NYI Marek Zidlicky (2) ASST: Mikhail Grabovski (9), Josh Bailey (10) 1 - 0 NYI
11:53 NYI John Tavares (13) ASST: Kyle Okposo (18), Brock Nelson (8) 2 - 0 NYI
07:28 NYI Matt Martin (3) ASST: Casey Cizikas (5), Calvin de Haan (4) 3 - 0 NYI
19:17 NYI Marek Zidlicky (3) ASST: Thomas Hickey (2), Steve Bernier (2) 4 - 0 NYI
The Isles improve to 12-1-2 when leading after two periods…The Isles' 41 points through 31 games is their second-highest point total at this stage of the season in the post-Cup era (42 points in 2014-15); they are one of four NHL teams with at least 41 points…The Isles have earned points in 10 straight games for the first time since an 11-game stretch late in the 2012-13 season (4-1-13 to 4-23-13, 8-0-3); it's the 14th time that the Isles have earned points in at least 10 straight games, but only the 3rd time in the post-Cup era…The Isles improve to 7-0-2 in their division as they remain the only NHL team to earn a point in all of their division games this season…John Tavares' first goal in 5 games allowed him to retake the team lead in goals from Frans Nielsen …Matt Martin's goal was his second in the last four games; both Martin and Casey Cizikas deflected Calvin deHaan's shot…The Isles trailed the Rangers by 11 points entering play on Thanksgiving Eve…Sixteen of the Isles' 18 skaters finished the game with a "+" rating...Thomas Greiss' shutout was the first in the last two seasons by anyone other than Jaroslav Halak. Halak has had eight shutouts as an Islander – the longest streak of shutouts by one goaltender since Rick DiPietro had 13 consecutive Islander shutouts between 2004 and 2008…The Isles have won five straight at home (longest streak since winning 7 straight from November 11-December 2, 2014)…The Isles had a four goal lead after two periods for the first time since November 11, 2014 (6-0 win over Colorado) and a four goal lead at any time for only the 4th time this season.
The Old(er) Man with the Z
Earlier this season, Zidlicky became the oldest defenseman in Islander history…Zidlicky, who became the oldest Islander to score twice in a game, also tied Johnny Boychuk for the club lead in defenseman goals (3); it was the first goal from the defense since Travis Hamonic scored against Montreal on November 20th…It was Zidlicky's 10th career 2-goal game (first since 4/13/14, for New Jersey vs. Boston); he has never had a hat trick... Andrew MacDonald was the last Islander defenseman to score twice in a game (3/5/2011 vs. St. Louis)…Zidlicky is now 2-2-4 in three games vs. the Devils this season.
Club Record Streak Stopped
The Isles had played five consecutive overtime/shootout games for the first time in their history.
This was the second game of a stretch in which the Isles will play 6 games in 10 days that will get the team to the Christmas break. The Isles are 2-0-0 in this stretch.
12-Dec-15 @ Blue Jackets (Win 3-2 OT)
13-Dec-15 Vs Devils (Win 4-0)
15-Dec-15 Vs Panthers
17-Dec-15 @ Avalanche
19-Dec-15 @ Coyotes
21-Dec-15 Vs Ducks
The Isles are 18-8-5 thru 31 games. Their 41 points represent their 2nd highest total through 31 games in the post-Cup era.
Most points in first 31 games:
· 47 in 1978-79
· 44 in 1976-77
· 44 in 2014-15
· 43 in 1980-81
· 42 in 1983-84
· 41 in 2015-16
· 39 in 2001-02
New Jersey 9-7-11=27
Home and Road
The Islanders are 18-8-5 overall; 11-4-2 at home and 7-4-3 on the road.
New Jersey is 15-11-4 overall; 7-6-3 at home and 8-5-1 on the road.
The Isles are 7-0-2 in Division games and are 11-8-2 in games against other divisions. They are 1-6-2 vs. the Atlantic Division, 5-1-1 vs. Central Division, and 5-1-0 vs. the Pacific Division.
The Isles finished last season 21-6-3 against the Met and 26-22-4 against other Divisions.
In the Nets
Thomas Greiss made 27 saves for his 4th career shutout, as he improves to 9-3-2. Greiss is 2-2-0 in his career against New Jersey.
Cory Schneider stopped 15 of 18 shots before being chased by Matt Martin's goal. It was the first time this season that Schneider has been pulled. He is 13-8-4 on the season and 2-4-1 in his career against the Isles. Long Island native Keith Kinkaid stopped 11 of 12 after replacing Schneider.
The Islanders were 0-4 on the power play, while New Jersey was 0-3.
The Isles have killed all 22 opponent power plays in their last nine games; it's the second time this season (October 15- November 1) that the Isles killed all opposing power plays in nine consecutive games. Since March, the Isles have had streaks of 12 games, 9 games and 9 games without allowing a power play goal – with the 12-game stretch in March establishing a club record.
The Isles are 10-2-3 when they score at least one power play goal and 7-7-2 when they do not. The Isles are 5-5-1 when they allow at least one power play goal and 13-3-4 when they do not.
Three is a Magic Number
The Isles are 15-2-0 when they score at least three goals (including shootout winners) and are 3-6-5 when they do not. The Isles were 40-8-4 when they scored at least three goals (including SO winners) last season.
One Goal Games
The Isles are 8-3-5 in games decided by a single goal including 3-3-0 in regulation. They are 2-3 in games decided in overtime and are 3-2 in shootouts. The Isles are 4-2 in games in which an empty-net goal turns a 1 goal game into a 2-goal game.
The Isles are 12-3-2 when they score first and are 6-5-3 when they allow the opening goal.
Second to The One
Jack Capuano is the 2nd winningest coach in Islander history. Capuano is 183-156-51 behind the Islander bench. Among the 9 New York area 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 390
3. Mike Milbury 191
4. Terry Simpson 187
5. Scott Gordon 181
Most wins by Islander coaches:
1. Al Arbour 740
2. Jack Capuano 183
3. Terry Simpson 81
4. Peter Laviolette 77
5. Ted Nolan 74
They Tweeted It
@spencer_hazen Anyone know that last Islanders backup goaltender to record a shutout before Greiss did tonight? #Isles (Anders Nilsson, also vs. New Jersey, 3/4/2012)
@blindsteve #isles #win ! GRIESS GRIESS BABY!!!!! Thomas #Greiss with the #shutout Zidlicky scored two !!!…
@SethAMandel So does Zidlicky's goal count as a power play goal? I'd be interested to know the final ruling on that. (It does not, it was 2:01 after the penalty. It has to be 1:59 or less after the penalty to count)
Including tonight, the Isles are 2-2-3 on the front-end and 4-2-1 on the back end of back-to-backs this season. The next back-to-back set will be January 2nd in Pittsburgh and January 3rd vs. Dallas.
Tired vs. Rested
· The Isles are 1-1-0 when both teams played the night before.
· The Isles are 2-2-0 when they are rested and their opponents are not.
· The Isles are 3-1-1 when their opponents are rested and the Isles are not.
Isles: Travis Hamonic (22:16); New Jersey: Andy Greene (22:08).
Isles record by ice-time leaders: Travis Hamonic (10-2-3), Johnny Boychuk (4-3-0), Calvin deHaan (0-0-1), Nick Leddy (3-2-1), Tied (0-1-0)
John Tavares led Isles forwards with 19:52 of ice-time. Isles record by Forward ice-time leaders: John Tavares (12-6-4), Ryan Strome (2-0-0), Kyle Okposo (0-1-1), Brock Nelson (1-0-0), Frans Nielsen (1-0-0), Josh Bailey (1-0-0), Tied (0-1-0).
Isles 34, New Jersey 17 (67%). It is the first time in at least the last three seasons that the Isles have won 2/3rds of the face-offs and the highest differential (+17) of the season.
Frans Nielsen won 9 of 11 for the Isles; no Devil who took more than three draws won more than he lost.
The Isles won 16 of 20 draws in the first period and 18 of 31 in the final two periods.
The Isles won 27 of 42 draws at even strength, 4 of 5 on the power play and 3 of 4 on the penalty kill.
Isles 19, New Jersey 18. Cal Clutterbuck had six hits to lead the Isles.
Former Devil Steve Bernier fought Adam Larsson in the second period. Season total – 8 (Martin-4, Boychuk, Bernier, Leddy, Okposo).
The Isles were credited with 13 blocked shots; Thomas Hickey led the team with 4.
For the Corsi Crowd
All situations: Isles 51, New Jersey 48. Even-Strength: Isles 40, New Jersey 38.
The Corsi stat measures shots attempted, both for and against (including blocks).
Travis Hamonic led the Isles with a +12 even-strength Corsi rating; he also had a club-leading 68% Corsi For percentage. Eric Gelinas led New Jersey with a +9 rating.
· Nikolay Kulemin -181 (68 for Toronto and 113 for the Isles)
· Brock Nelson -166 (all for Isles)
Jean-Francois Berube is on injured reserve; Cal Clutterbuck returned to the lineup, replacing Eric Boulton. Steve Bernier replaced Ryan Strome (injured) while Marek Zidlicky replaced Brian Strait.
The Isles have lost 63 games this season due to injury/illness.
All-time Islander Leader Board:
John Tavares has:
· 187 goals (11th all-time, 19 behind John Tonelli and 24 behind Derek King)
· 237 assists (15th all-time, 12 behind Tomas Jonsson and 22 behind Billy Harris)
· 424 points (13th all-time and 19 behind Billy Harris)
· 460 games played (30th among Islander skaters all-time and 10 behind Mariusz Czerkawski)
Kyle Okposo has:
· 125 goals (18th all-time and 2 behind Jason Blake)
· 206 assists (17th all-time and 2 behind Frans Nielsen)
· 331 points (tied-17th all-time with Ziggy Palffy and 2 behind Tomas Jonsson)
· 481 games played (27th among Islander skaters all-time and 12 behind Ed Westfall)
Frans Nielsen has:
· 111 goals (25th all-time, and 5 behind Ray Ferraro)
· 208 assists (16th all-time and 29 behind John Tavares)
· 319 points (19th all-time, 12 behind Ziggy Palffy and 12 behind Kyle Okposo)
· 556 games played (15th among Islander skaters all-time and 38 behind John Tonelli)
Josh Bailey has:
· 147 assists (27th all-time and 3 behind Mariusz Czerkawski)
· 234 points (28th all-time, 3 behind Travis Green and 4 behind Ray Ferraro)
· 506 games played (25th among Islander skaters, 3 behind Rich Pilon, 4 behind Mick Vukota and 8 behind Dave Lewis)
Season Series Stats
The Isles lead the season series 2 games to 1 and 5 points to 2.
The Isles have won five straight from New Jersey at home and are 8-0-1 in the last nine games against the Devils. Five of the nine games have been decided in either overtime or shootouts. It's the first time since 1985-1988 (12 straight wins) that the Isles have won five straight home games from New Jersey.
The teams will meet for the final time this season on February 19th in Newark.
On The Farm
The Sound Tigers are 16-10-1-1 on the season after a 2-1 shootout loss to Hershey on Sunday; Ryan Pulock scored Bridgeport's only goal.
The Sound Tigers head to Providence on Friday before hosting Portland on both Saturday and Sunday.
TUESDAY, DECEMBER 15th—FLORIDA AT ISLANDERS 7:00PM
[MSG+ (Isles Pre-game at 6:30), 91.5 WNYE-FM. 88.7 WRHU-FM, 103.9 WRCN]
The last Isles defenseman to score three goals in a game (Denis Potvin, in 1982) will be in the building on Tuesday as the Isles host the Florida Panthers. The Captain of the Islander dynasty is the Panthers' TV commentator.
It's the second meeting of the season between the teams and the first since the teams met on November
27th. That game, the second of the Isles' current 10-game point streak, saw the first nine shooters score in a shootout before Roberto Luongo stopped Brock Nelson to give the extra point to Florida.
The Isles are 6-3-2 in their last 11 games vs. Florida, but the Panthers have won the last three, including twice in a shootout.
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.
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