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Tuesday, April 05, 2016

The Skinny: Isles 5, Tampa Bay 2

"The Skinny"   

By Eric Hornick
 
Game 78
Isles 5, Tampa Bay 2
Matt Martin's career-high 9th goal keyed a three-goal second period as the Islanders moved within two points of clinching a playoff spot with a 5-2 win over the Tampa Bay Lightning before a crowd of 13,106 at Barclays Center.
With the win, the Isles remain two points behind the third place Rangers and four points ahead of the fifth place Flyers.   The Isles still have a chance to catch the Penguins for second place in the division, as they are now five points behind Pittsburgh.
The Isles are 10-2-1 in their last 13 games at home and finish their longest homestand of the season with a 3-1-0 record.

The Scoring:

1ST PERIOD
13:18    NYI      Ryan Pulock (2) ASST: Kyle Okposo (38), John Tavares (33)      1 - 0 NYI           
 
2ND PERIOD
02:08    TBL      Alex Killorn (14) ASST: Nikita Kucherov (35), Matthew Carle (3)  1 - 1 Tie           
11:00    NYI      Matt Martin (9) ASST: Cal Clutterbuck (8), Casey Cizikas (20)     2 - 1 NYI           
15:23    NYI      Brock Nelson (26) ASST: Nikolay Kulemin (13)   3 - 1 NYI          
16:15    NYI      PPG - John Tavares (30) ASST: Frans Nielsen (31), Kyle Okposo (39)    4 - 1 NYI     
19:53    TBL      Victor Hedman (10) ASST: Matthew Carle (4), Vladislav Namestnikov (19) 4 - 2 NYI     
 
3RD PERIOD
04:28    NYI      Johnny Boychuk (9) ASST: John Tavares (34)    5 - 2 NYI

The Skinny
The Isles led after the first period for only the 4th time in the last 20 games…Ryan Pulock fought Cedric Paquette in the first period; it was his first professional fight (AHL or NHL) and records indicate that he didn't have one in the Western Hockey League either…The win broke an Isles 0-4-1 stretch against teams currently holding playoff spots…John Tavares reached the 30-goal mark for the third time in his career…Frans Nielsen's assist was his 50th point of the season; it is the second time in his career he has reached that mark…Kyle Okposo's two assists give him 60 points on the season; it is the second time in his career he has reached that mark…Johnny Boychuk matched his career-high (and last year's total) with his 9th goal of the season; he had only 19 goals in 317 games for Boston…Nick Leddy had 6 shots on goal and 6 hits; it is the second time in his Islander career that he has had 6 shots (4/11/15 vs Columbus) and the first time in his NHL career that he had 6 hits (5 on four previous occasions)
 
The Injury
Calvin deHaan suffered a lower body injury blocking a shot in the first period.  He played two further shifts before leaving the game without returning.
 
Movin' On Up
John Tavares had two assists to give him 261 career assists, placing him 13th on the all-time Isles list (Billy Harris 259)
 
Greiss in Record Territory
Thomas Greiss stopped 32 of 34 Lightning shots tonight, maintaining his .924 save percentage.
Player                         Season   SA    SV      SV%    MIN 
Thomas Greiss           2015-16    1151 1064    .924    2207
 
Al Montoya               2010-11    585    539     .921    1154 
Wade Dubielewicz    2007-08    627    576     .919    1132 

Jaroslav Halak           2015-16    984    904     .919    2091 
Rick DiPietro             2006-07    1917    1761 .919    3627
 
Comeback Kids
The Isles have earned 19 points (7-21-5) in games that they trailed after 2 periods.
 
The 7 wins:
4-Dec-15          Vs        St. Louis (Trailed 1-0, won 2-1 in a shootout)
14-Jan-16         Vs        New York (Trailed 1-0, won 3-1)
9-Feb-16           @         Columbus (Trailed 2-1, won 3-2 in a shootout)
25-Feb-16         @         Calgary (Trailed 1-0, won 2-1 in overtime)
14-Mar-16         Vs        Florida (Trailed 2-0, won 3-2)
26-Mar-16         @         Carolina (Trailed 3-2, won 4-3 in overtime)
29-Mar-16         Vs        Carolina (Trailed 1-0, won 2-1 in a shootout)
 
Most wins (since 1987-88) by Isles when trailing after 2 periods
10 in 2013-14
7 in 2015-16
 
The Skinny on the Playoff Race
(Through games on April 4)
Metropolitan Division Standings (Top 5)
xy Washington 55-17-6=116 points / 78 games (51 ROW) Idle
x Pittsburgh     46-25-8=100 points / 79 games (42 ROW) Idle
NY Rangers     44-26-9=97 points / 79 games (41 ROW) Beat Columbus 4-2
ISLES              43-26-9=95 points / 78 games (38 ROW) Beat Tampa Bay 5-2
Philadelphia     39-26-13=91 points/ 78 games (36 ROW) Idle
 
Atlantic Teams in Wild Card Race
Detroit             40-28-11=91 points/ 79 games (38 ROW) Idle
Boston             41-30-8=90 points/ 79 games (37 ROW) Idle
x Clinched Playoff Spot
y Clinched Division Title, Conference Title and President's Trophy
 
Best They Can Do (By Winning Every Game in Regulation or Overtime)
Pittsburgh      106 points/ 45 ROW
NY Rangers   103 points/ 44 ROW
ISLES             103 points/ 42 ROW
Philadelphia    99 points/ 40 ROW
Detroit             97 points/41 ROW
Boston            96 points/40 ROW
 
Remaining Schedule:
Washington:  4/5 vs. ISLES, 4/7 vs. Pittsburgh, 4/9 at St. Louis, 4/10 vs. Anaheim
Pittsburgh: 4/5 @ Ottawa, 4/7 @ Washington, 4/9 @ Philadelphia
NY Rangers: 4/5 vs. Tampa Bay, 4/7 vs. ISLES, 4/9 vs. Detroit   
ISLES: 4/5 @ Washington, 4/7 @ NY Rangers, 4/9 vs. Buffalo, 4/10 vs. Philadelphia
Philadelphia: 4/6 at Detroit, 4/7 vs. Toronto, 4/9 vs Pittsburgh, 4/10 @ ISLES
Detroit:  4/6 vs. Philadelphia, 4/7 at Boston, 4/9 @ NY Rangers
Boston: 4/5 vs. Carolina, 4/7 vs. Detroit, 4/9 vs Ottawa
 
On Their Own
If the Isles go 1-3-0 they will clinch a playoff spot regardless of what everyone else does.
If the Isles win their last four, they will finish no lower than third regardless of what everyone else does.
 
Magic Number
The Isles' magic number is clinch a playoff berth is 2 over Boston, 3 over Detroit and 5 over Philadelphia.  Any combination of Islander points gained and Bruins points lost totaling 2 will guarantee that the Isles finish ahead of Boston.
 
The Isles have clinched at least a 9th place finish in the East.  The Isles also need to finish ahead of Philadelphia, Boston, Detroit, the Rangers OR Pittsburgh in order to clinch a playoff berth.
 
(Top 3 in each division, plus next two teams make the playoffs)
 
Tuesday's Games
ISLES at Washington
Tampa Bay at NY Rangers
Carolina at Boston
Pittsburgh at Ottawa
 
When Can the Isles Clinch a Playoff Spot?
The Isles will clinch a playoff spot on Tuesday IF:
 
The Isles beat Washington
OR
The Isles get 1 point vs. Washington and Boston loses in any manner to Carolina
OR
Boston loses in regulation to Carolina

 "Home" Stretch
The Isles are playing six of their final eight games at home this season; it's the first time in franchise history that this has happened.  The Isles are 3-1-0 in this stretch:
 
·        March 29 vs. Hurricanes (Won 2-1 SO)
·        March 31 vs. Blue Jackets (Won 4-3)
·        April 2 vs. Penguins (Lost 5-0)
·        April 4 vs. Lightning (Win 5-2)
·        April 5 @ Capitals
·        April 7 @ Rangers
·        April 9 vs. Sabres
·        April 10 vs. Flyers
 
Most Points in The Post-Cup Era through 78 games
·        96 in 2015-16
·        95 in 2014-15
 
Home Sweet Home
The Isles are 25-10-4 on home-ice (54 points), matching their highest point total through 39 home games in the Post-Cup era (54 in 1984-85).  It's the first time since 1983-84 and 1984-85 that the Isles have earned at least 52 points at home in consecutive seasons.

Road Warriors
The Isles are 18-16-5 on the road this season.  In the Post-Cup era, the Isles have earned more than 41 points in the first 39 road games only twice (47 in first 39 on road last season, 43 in first 39 in 2001-02).
 
The Isles have clinched at least an NHL-.500 road record for the 4th straight season, matching the club record (1975-76 to 1978-79 and 1980-81 to 1983-84).

The Shots
Isles             9-10-17=36
Tampa Bay 10-12-12=34
 
Home and Road
The Islanders are 43-26-9 overall; 25-10-4 at home and 18-16-5 on the road. 
Tampa Bay is 45-29-5 overall; 25-13-3 at home and 20-16-2 on the road.
 
The Lightning are playing their final four games on the road this season as the Frozen Four for college hockey will be played in Tampa this weekend.
 
By Division
The Isles are 16-7-4 in Division games and are 27-19-5 in games against other divisions. They are 8-12-3 vs. the Atlantic Division, 9-4-1 vs. the Central Division, and 10-3-1 vs. the Pacific Division. 
 
How The West Was Won
The Isles went 19-7-2 against the Western Conference, including 12-0-2 at home. The Isles have the most wins of any Eastern Conference team against the Western Conference and are guaranteed to finish with the record of an Eastern team vs. the West. 

In the Nets
Thomas Greiss made 32 saves and improves to 22-11-4 on the season; he is 3-1-0 in his career against Tampa Bay. 
Ben Bishop made 18 saves before being replaced after the Isles' 5th goal.  Bishop is 34-21-4 on the season and 5-4-1 in his career against the Isles. Andrei Vasilevskiy stopped all 13 shots he saw after he replaced Bishop.

Power Plays
The Islanders were 1-2 on the power play, while Tampa Bay was 0-4.    
The Isles killed all 11 Lightning power plays this season.
The Isles are 26-5-4 when they score at least one power play goal and 17-21-5 when they do not.  The Isles are 13-12-3 when they allow at least one power play goal and 30-14-6 when they do not. 

Three is a Magic Number
The Isles are 35-4-1 when they score at least three goals (including shootout winners) and are 8-22-8 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 20-6-9 in games decided by a single goal including 10-6-0 in regulation. They are 5-4 in games decided in overtime and are 5-5 in shootouts.  The Isles are 6-5 in games in which an empty-net goal turns a 1 goal game into a 2-goal game.

First Goal
The Isles are 28-6-4 when they score first and are 15-20-5 when they allow the opening goal.   

Second to The One
Jack Capuano, the 2nd winningest coach in Islander history, is 208-174-55 behind the Islander bench.  Among the 9 New York area teams, only the Yankees' Joe Girardi has led his team longer than Capuano. 

Most games coached (Islanders):
1.      Al Arbour 1,500
2.      Jack Capuano 437
3.      Mike Milbury 191
4.      Terry Simpson 187
5.      Scott Gordon 181
 
Most wins by Islander coaches:
1.      Al Arbour 740
2.      Jack Capuano 208
3.      Terry Simpson 81
4.      Peter Laviolette 77
5.      Ted Nolan 74

Capuano is the 86th coach in NHL history to coach at least 400 games. His 208 wins ties him for 68th all-time with Ron Low, one behind Larry Robinson.

Back-to-Backs
Including tonight, the Isles are 5-5-4 on the front-end and 8-2-3 on the back end of back-to-backs this season.  This back-to-back set will conclude in Washington on Tuesday. The Isles' final two games will also be played as a back-to-back set (April 9 vs Buffalo, April 10 vs. Philadelphia).
 
Tired vs. Rested
·        The Isles are 3-1-0 when both teams played the night before.
·        The Isles are 6-3-0 when they are rested and their opponents are not.
·        The Isles are 5-1-3 when their opponents are rested and the Isles are not.

Ice-time Leaders
Isles: Nick Leddy (29:26); Tampa Bay: Jason Garrison (21:53)
Isles record by ice-time leaders: Travis Hamonic (24-6-6), Johnny Boychuk (5-3-0), Calvin deHaan (3-3-1), Nick Leddy (9-11-2), John Tavares (0-2-0), Tied (0-1-0)
Frans Nielsen led the forwards with 18:18 of ice time. Isles record by Forward ice-time leaders: John Tavares (28-18-8), Ryan Strome (2-0-0), Kyle Okposo (2-3-1), Brock Nelson (1-0-0), Frans Nielsen (7-2-0), Josh Bailey (2-0-0), Tied (1-2-0). 

Face-offs
Isles 22, Tampa Bay 25 (47%)
Brock Nelson won 3 of 5 for the Isles; Valtteri Filppula won 9 of 15 for Tampa Bay. 
The Isles won 9 of 18 draws in the first period but only 13 of 29 draws over the last two periods.
The Isles won 18 of 35 draws at even strength, 1 of 4 on the power play and 3 of 8 on the penalty kill.

Heavy Hitters
Isles 38, Tampa Bay 24.  Nick Leddy led the Isles with six hits.  Matt Martin, the NHL's hit leader, added three.

Most Hits in a Season (since 2005-06):
1          Matt Martin       2014-2015        NYI      382
2          Matt Martin       2011-2012        NYI      374
3          Matt Martin      2015-2016        NYI      362
4          Matt Martin       2013-2014        NYI      359
5          Cal Clutterbuck 2008-2009        MIN      356
6          Cal Clutterbuck 2014-2015        NYI      343
7          Cal Clutterbuck 2010-2011        MIN      336
8          Cal Clutterbuck 2009-2010        MIN      318
Martin needs 21 hits in the final four games to break his own NHL record.

Fights
Ryan Pulock fought Cedric Paquette in the first period. Season total – 22 (Martin-11, Lee-3, Bernier, Boychuk, Cizikas, Hamonic, Leddy, Okposo, Pulock, Strait). 

Blocked Shots
The Isles were credited with 19 blocked shots, including six from Thomas Hickey.

Most Blocked Shots by an Islander (since 2005-2006)
1              Brendan Witt                    2006-2007    207
2              Sean Hill                          2006-2007    202
3              Andrew Mac Donald          2013-2014    198
4              Calvin de Haan                2015-2016    190
5              Andrew Mac Donald          2011-2012    185

For the Corsi Crowd
All situations:  Isles 53, Tampa Bay 64.
 5-on-5: Isles 42, Tampa Bay 41.
The Corsi stat measures shots attempted, both for and against (including blocks). 
 
John Tavares led the Isles with a +13 5-on-5 Corsi rating and a club-leading 81% Corsi For percentage. Matt Carle led Tampa Bay with a +10 5-on-5 Corsi rating.

Ironmen
Five Islanders have played every game this season:
·        Nikolay Kulemin - 228 consecutive games (68 for Maple Leafs and 160 for the Isles)
·        Anders Lee – 154 (all for Isles)
·        Nick Leddy – 88 (all for Isles)
·        Matt Martin – 78 (all for Isles)
·        Frans Nielsen – 78 (all for Isles)

Missing Men
Adam Pelech has been loaned to Bridgeport on injury rehab. Other injured players: Jaroslav Halak, Mikhail Grabovski and Travis Hamonic.  Christopher Gibson was recalled from Bridgeport to replace JF Berube (injured).  Ryan Pulock replaced Brian Strait in the lineup. Steve Bernier and Eric Boulton were scratched.

Missing a Piece (or two)
The Isles are 14-16-2 over the last two seasons in games in which they are missing Johnny Boychuk, Travis Hamonic or Nick Leddy, including 6-6-1 this season.  They are 5-4-1, including 2-1-1 this season, when two of the three miss a game.

All-time Islander Leader Boards:
Games Played (skaters)
1.      Bryan Trottier 1123 *** 2. Denis Potvin 1060 *** 3. Bob Nystrom 900
….
11. Stefan Persson 622 *** 12. Frans Nielsen 603 *** 13. Kenny Jonsson 597 *** 14. Garry Howatt 596 *** 15. John Tonelli 594*** 16. Josh Bailey 553 *** 17. Ken Morrow 550 *** 18. Duane Sutter 547 *** 19. Lorne Henning 543 ***20. Claude Lapointe 535 *** 21. Tomas Jonsson 532 *** 22. Pat LaFontaine 530 *** 23. Kyle Okposo 525*** 24. Dave Lewis 514 *** 25. Mick Vukota 510 *** 26. Rich Pilon 509 *** 27. John Tavares 507

Goals
1.      Mike Bossy 573 *** 2. Bryan Trottier 500 *** 3. Denis Potvin 310
….
9. Derek King 211 *** 10. John Tonelli 206*** 11. John Tavares 204
16. Mariusz Czerkawski 145 *** 17. Kyle Okposo 138 *** 18. Jason Blake 127 *** 19. Duane Sutter 121 *** 20. Alexei Yashin 119 *** 21. Frans Nielsen, Mark Parrish, Matt Moulson, and Steve Thomas 118

Assists
1.      Bryan Trottier 853 *** 2. Denis Potvin 742 *** 3. Mike Bossy 553 ***
11. Pat LaFontaine 279 *** 12. Bob Nystrom 278 *** 13. John Tavares 261*** 14. Billy Harris 259 *** 15. Tomas Jonsson 249***16. Frans Nielsen 229 *** 17. Kyle Okposo 226
25. Ziggy Palffy 163 *** 26. Josh Bailey 157

Points
1.      Bryan Trottier 1353 *** 2. Mike Bossy 1126 *** 3. Denis Potvin 1052
10. Derek King 499 *** 11. Pat Flatley 488 *** 12. John Tavares 465***13. Billy Harris 443 *** 14. Stefan Persson 369 *** 15. Kyle Okposo 364 *** 16. Frans Nielsen 346
24 Jason Blake & Steve Thomas 258 *** 26. Josh Bailey 250

Season Series Stats
The Isles win the season series two games to one (and four points to two). 
The Isles are 8-0-1 in their last nine home games against the Lightning.
 
On The Farm
Bridgeport is 38-25-4-3 on the season after splitting a pair of games over the weekend, defeating Wilkes-Barre Scranton 5-2 on Saturday and dropping a 3-1 decision to Springfield on Sunday.
 
Bridgeport is tied with Portland for 4th place in the Atlantic Division; their magic number to clinch a playoff spot is 7. Bridgeport begins a 3-game in 3-day weekend on Friday in Hershey before playing Lehigh Valley in a home-and-home series.

Up Next
TUESDAY, APRIL 5th –ISLANDERS AT WASHINGTON 7:00PM
[MSG+2 (Isles Pre-game at 6:30), 91.5 WNYE-FM, 88.7 WRHU-FM, 103.9 WRCN]
 
The Isles begin their final road trip of the season as they visit Washington on Tuesday night.  The Capitals have cemented away the President's Trophy and now the Isles, with a magic number of two, will try to join them in the NHL's version of the Sweet 16.
 
The Caps have won all three meetings this season, including an overtime win at Barclays Center in February.
 
The Isles will be looking for their first regular season victory against the Caps since a 4-3 overtime win on December 29, 2014 (0-2-2).
 
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 http://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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