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The Skinny: Carolina 6, Isles 3 (Carolina wins series 4-1)

"The Skinny" By Eric Hornick Eastern Conference Round 1, Game 5 Carolina 6, Isles 3 Carolina Wins Series 4-1 School is out. Jack D...

Sunday, April 14, 2019

The Skinny: Isles 4, Pittsburgh 1. Isles lead series, 3-0.

"The Skinny"

By Eric Hornick

Eastern Conference First Round Game 3
Isles 4, Pittsburgh 1 
Jordan Eberle and Brock Nelson scored goals 1:02 apart in the first period to erase an early Penguin lead as the Isles took a 3-games-to-0 lead over the Pittsburgh Penguins with a 4-1 victory before a sellout crowd of 18,610 at PPG Paints Arena.

Those two goals were the fastest by the Isles in a playoff game since 2002 (Kip Miller and Mariusz Czerkawski scored 38 seconds apart vs. Toronto in game 6)

It's the first time since the 1983 Stanley Cup Final that the Isles lead a series 3-0; game 4 is scheduled for Pittsburgh on Tuesday evening.

The Scoring: 
1st Period
Garrett Wilson (1) Marcus Pettersson, Justin Schultz 12:54 NYI 0,PIT 1
Jordan Eberle (3) Ryan Pulock, Mathew Barzal 13:22 NYI 1,PIT 1
Brock Nelson (2) Tom Kuhnhackl 14:24 NYI 2,PIT 1

2nd Period
No Goals

3rd Period
Leo Komarov (1) Anthony Beauvillier, Valtteri Filppula 10:27 NYI 3,PIT 1
Anders Lee (1) Valtteri Filppula, Adam Pelech 18:32 EN NYI 4, PIT 1

The Series (Isles lead 3-0)
Game 1: Isles 4, Pittsburgh 3 (OT)
Game 2: Isles 3, Pittsburgh 1
Game 3: Isles 4, Pittsburgh 1
Game 4: Tuesday in Pittsburgh (7:30)
Game 5 (if needed): Thursday April 18 on Long Island
Game 6 (if needed): Saturday April 20 in Pittsburgh
Game 7 (if needed): Monday April 22 on Long Island

The Skinny   
Jordan Eberle is 3-2-5 in the series; he is the first Islander to open a playoff run by scoring in three straight games since Ray Ferraro (1993 vs. Washington) and also joins Ferraro as the only players in Isles history to score in their first three playoff games with the team…Eberle is the first Islander since Kyle Okposo (games 2-4 vs. Pittsburgh in 2013) to score in three consecutive playoff games…Mathew Barzal has four assists in the series. Both Eberle and Barzal are +5 in the series… Valtteri Filppula appeared in his 29th career playoff game against Pittsburgh (most of any active player).  Only Dominic Moore (31 games) has played more playoff games against the Pens.  Filppula is 25-60-85 in 161 playoff games. He has played 61 more playoff games than Johnny Boychuk, who is 2nd in career games among current Isles with 100…Boychuk is the 360th player in NHL history to appear in 100 playoff games...The Isles lead a series 3-0 for the first time since the 1983 Final; they have won all nine previous series when winning the first three games.… It's the first time since 2013 that the Penguins have lost the first three games of a series; they were swept by Boston in the Eastern Conference Final…Both Leo Komarov (18th game) and Anders Lee (6th game) scored their first career playoff goals.  It was Leo's first goal in 37 games, including regular season (1/20/19 vs. Anaheim)…No Isles goalie or coach had ever won their first two playoff games; both Robin Lehner and Barry Trotz have now won their first three…The Isles have held Sidney Crosby without a point in the first three games of the series; they have NEVER held him pointless in three consecutive regular season games.…The Isles have outscored the Penguins 11-5 in the series; it's the first time that the Isles have outscored the opposition by six goals in the a series since the 1983 Final.

Vs. Pittsburgh
This is the fifth all-time playoff meeting between the teams:
1975- Quarter-Finals.  Isles won series 4 games to 3.
1982- Preliminary Series. Isles won series 3 games to 2.
1993- Division Final.  Isles won series 4 games to 3.
2013- Conference Quarter-Finals.  Pittsburgh won series 4 games to 2.
2019- Conference First Round.  Isles lead series 3 games to 0.

An overtime goal has ended the last three series: John Tonelli (1982), David Volek (1993) and Brooks Orpik (2013) scored the series-ending goals.

This is only the second time that the Isles have had home-ice in a series vs. Pittsburgh (1982).

Overtime is Our Time
The Isles are 34-16 (.680) all-time in overtime, including 18-9 (.667) at home.  The .680 overall percentage and .667 home percentages are both the best in NHL history. The Isles are 1-0 in overtime this season; eight of the 20 playoff games the Isles have played since 2014 have gone to overtime with the Isles holding a 5-3 record.  

Pittsburgh is 30-31 in overtime, including 12-12 on the road.

There have been six overtime games between the teams; each team has won three.  John Tonelli (1982) and David Volek (1993) have the other winners for the Isles while Rick Kehoe (1982), Chris Kunitz (2013) and Brooks Orpik (2013) have winners for Pittsburgh. Each of the six games was decided in the first nine minutes of overtime.

In game 1, the Isles led for 27:43 and the game was tied for 36:56.  
In game 2, the Isles led for 12:06, the game was tied for 45:05 and Pittsburgh led for 2:49.  
In game 3, the Isles led for 45:36, the game was tied for 13:54 and Pittsburgh led for :28.
Totals:   Isles 85:25, Tied 95:55, Pittsburgh 3:17

Other than the final 8:22 of game two and the final 9:33 of game three, the score has been tied or within one goal for the entire series.

Playoffs All-time
The Isles improve to 147-120 in 267 all-time playoff games.  They are 84-44 at home (including 2-3 at Barclays) and 63-76 on the road.  

What a Season!
The Isles finished 2nd in the Metro Division, 4th in the Eastern Conference and 5th in the NHL. The Isles have not finished that high since the conference was created. They last finished that high in a conference in 87-88, when they were 3rd in the Wales Conference.  It's the first time since 1985-86 that the Isles have finished in the top five overall.

Two Isles Goalies with at least 23 Wins in a Regular Season
1978-79: Chico Resch (26) & Billy Smith (25)
2018-19: Robin Lehner (25) & Thomas Greiss (23)

Best Goals Against Average by An Islander in a Regular Season
1. Chico Resch 1975-76 2.08
2. Robin Lehner 2018-19 2.13
3. Thomas Greiss 2018-19 2.28
4. Chico Resch 1975-76 2.28
5. Jaroslav Halak 2015-16 2.30

Best Save Percentage by an Islander in a Regular Season 
1. Robin Lehner 2018-19 .930
2. Chico Resch 1975-76 .928
3. Thomas Greiss 2018-19 .927
4. Thomas Greiss 2015-16 .925

The Best (Fourth) Line in Hockey
In the regular season, the Isles were 35-16-6 when Casey Cizikas, Matt Martin and Cal Clutterbuck all play and are 13-11-1 when one or more miss a game.  They are 3-0 when all three play in the playoffs.

In this series, the trio has combined for 17 shots on goal and 46 hits.

It's Good to be Home
The Isles went 12-7-2 on Coliseum ice; they averaged 97.1% of capacity on Long Island (including 14 sellouts).  They are 2-0 in playoff games at the Coliseum (2 sellouts).

Most Points (Post-Cup Era)
103: 2018-19 
101: 2014-15

Most Road Points (Post-Cup Era)
51: 2018-19
49: 2014-15

Fewest Goals Allowed (Includes SO)
190 1975-76 (no overtime games; 80-game schedule)
193 1976-77 (no overtime games; 80-game schedule)
196 2018-19 (189 in regulation, two in overtime, and five in shootouts)
The Isles allowed 190 goals in the 80-game 1975-76 season (2.38/game). The Isles have allowed 2.30 goals in regulation and 2.39 goals including OT/SO this season.

Worst to First
The Isles allowed the most goals in the NHL last season and the fewest goals in the NHL this season.  Only once before in NHL history had a team allowed the most goals in one season and the fewest in the next; the Ottawa Senators did so in 1917-18 and 1918-19.  

Coach Trotz
In regular season play, Barry Trotz is 2nd among active coaches in games and third in wins. Trotz' NHL record is 810-595-60-141 in 1,606 games. 

Most Coaching Wins
1. Scotty Bowman  1,244
2. Joel Quenneville  890
3. Ken Hitchcock    849
4. Barry Trotz    810
5. Al Arbour    782

Most Games Coached
1. Scotty Bowman   2,141
2. Joel Quenneville 1,636
3. Al Arbour   1,607
4. Barry Trotz   1,606
5. Ken Hitchcock   1,598

Trotz will catch Al Arbour in games coached on Opening Night next season.  

Coach Trotz (Playoffs)
Barry Trotz has now coached 116 playoff games (58-58).  He is 18th all-time in games coached and will pass Billy Reay (117) and Jacques Lemaire (117) this month.  His 58th win breaks a tie with Billy Reay for 19th all time.  Trotz won the Stanley Cup last season; Joel Quenneville (3) and Mike Sullivan (2) are the only active coaches with multiple Stanley Cups.

Most playoff wins by Islander coaches:
Al Arbour 123
Jack Capuano 10
Terry Simpson 9
Peter Laviolette 4
Barry Trotz 3
Ted Nolan 1
Steve Stirling 1

Most playoff games coached (Islanders):
Al Arbour 209
Jack Capuano 24
Terry Simpson 20
Peter Laviolette 12
Steve Stirling 5
Ted Nolan 5
Barry Trotz 3

Most overtime wins/overtime record:
Al Arbour 26 (26-9)
Jack Capuano 4 (4-5)
Terry Simpson 3 (3-0)
Barry Trotz 1 (1-0)
Peter Laviolette 0 (0-1)
Steve Stirling 0 (0-1)

Most playoff series wins:
Al Arbour 29
Jack Capuano 1
Terry Simpson 1

What a Difference a Year Makes
This Season: 48-27-7 (103 points), with 228 goals scored and 196 goals allowed (includes SO winners)
Last Season: 35-37-10 (80 points), with 264 goals scored and 296 goals allowed (includes SO winners)
The Isles allowed 100 fewer goals, a decrease of 33.7% as compared to last season.

First Things First
The Isles are 1-0 when scoring first and are 2-0 when allowing the first goal in the playoffs.

The Shots
Isles          8-16-12=36
Pittsburgh 7-9-9=26

Shots by Game
Game 1: Isles 33, Pittsburgh 44
Game 2: Isles 34, Pittsburgh 33
Game 3: Isles 36, Pittsburgh 26
Series: Isles 103, Pittsburgh 103

The Isles are 1-0 when they outshoot their opponents, 0-0 when the shots are even and 2-0 when they are outshot. [The Isles won a franchise-record 31 games when outshot this season.]

In the Nets
Robin Lehner made 25 saves to improve to 3-0 in the playoffs and in his career against Pittsburgh.   
Matt Murray made 32 saves but falls to 0-3 in the playoffs and in his career against the Isles. 

Power Plays
The Isles were 0-2 on the power play in 2:23 of PP time (including 0:53 of 5-on-3); Pittsburgh was 0-3 on the power play in 5:16 of PP time.

Power Plays by Game
Game 1: Isles 1-2 (2:25; 5 shots), Pittsburgh 1-3 (5:11, 2 shots)
Game 2: Isles 1-6 (9:59, 8 shots), Pittsburgh 0-2 (3:05, 3 shots)
Game 3: Isles 0-2 (2:23, 5 shots), Pittsburgh 0-4 (5:16, 4 shots)
Series: Isles 2-8 (14:47, 18 shots), Pittsburgh 1-5 (13:32, 9 shots)

Three is a Magic Number
The Isles are 3-0 in the playoffs when they score at least three goals.  In the regular season the Isles went 38-2-2 when they scored at least three goals (including shootout winners) and 10-25-5 when they did not.  The 10 wins when being held to two goals or fewer are a franchise record.

One Goal Games
The Isles are 1-0 in the playoffs in one-goal games; they were 19-6-7 in games decided by a single goal in regulation. 

Ice-time Leaders
Isles: Ryan Pulock (22:17);  Pittsburgh: Kris Letang (24:53)
Cal Clutterbuck led Isles forwards with 19:10 of ice-time 
Isles record by ice-time leader: Adam Pelech (1-0), Ryan Pulock (2-0) 

Isles 26, Pittsburgh 29 (47%).

Casey Cizikas won 13 of 22 for the Isles; Sidney Crosby won 12 of 19 for Pittsburgh.
Face-offs by period: 1st period 10/20; 2nd period 4/13; 3rd period 12/22.
Face-offs by strength: Even strength: 25/50, Power play 0/2, Penalty kill 1/3.

Face-offs by Game
Game 1: Isles 35, Pittsburgh 29 (55%).  
Game 2: Isles 33, Pittsburgh 24 (58%).
Game 3: Isles 26, Pittsburgh 29 (47%)
Series: Isles 94, Pittsburgh 82 (53%)

Hit Count
Isles 47 (Matt Martin -10)
Pittsburgh 58 (Bryan Rust-7)

Hits Game by Game:
Game 1: Isles 42, Pittsburgh 43
Game 2: Isles 41, Pittsburgh 36 
Game 3: Isles 47, Pittsburgh 58
Series: Isles 130, Pittsburgh 137

There were no fights. Playoff total -0.  The Isles were involved in 16 fights in the regular season.

Blocked Shots
The Isles blocked 23 shots (Nick Leddy-4).  

For the Corsi Crowd 
All situations: Isles 61, Pittsburgh 58
5-on-5 Isles 48, Pittsburgh 45

5-on-5 leaders:
Isles: Devon Toews +13 
Pittsburgh: Three with +7

Corsi Game by Game:
Game 1 (All) Isles 62, Pittsburgh 83;  (5-on-5) Isles 49, Pittsburgh 70
Game 2 (All) Isles 59, Pittsburgh 62; (5-on-5) Isles 39, Pittsburgh 47 
Game 3 (All) Isles 61, Pittsburgh 58; (5-on-5) Isles 48, Pittsburgh 45
Series (All) Isles 182, Pittsburgh 203; (5-on-5) Isles 136, Pittsburgh 162

(Andrew Ladd -INJ), (Tanner Fritz- INJ),Thomas Hickey, Luca Sbisa, Dennis Seidenberg, Ross Johnston, Michael Dal Colle
Playoff games lost: 6.  The Isles lost 153 man-games in the regular season

Post-Season Late Heroes
The Isles have scored once in overtime:
4/10 – PIT Penguins-Josh Bailey scored the winning goal (4:39 of OT) 

Post-Season Late Goals Allowed
The Isles have allowed a goal four times in the final two minutes of regulation to either tie or win a game:
4/10 – PIT Penguins – Justin Schultz tied the game (18:31), but the Isles won in overtime. 

Playoff Offside Challenges
4/10 – PIT Penguins – Isles goal overturned after successful Penguin challenge. 

On the Farm  
The playoff-bound Sound Tigers clinched home-ice with a 5-2 win over Wilkes Barre-Scranton in their season finale. Mitch Vande Sompel scored twice while Sebastian Aho added three assists.

Bridgeport will begin the best-of-5 first round series on Friday against Hershey.

Playoff Schedule:
    1           Friday, Apr. 19          at Bridgeport 
    2           Saturday, Apr. 20      at Bridgeport
    3           Tuesday, Apr. 23      at Hershey
    4*         Thursday, Apr. 25      at Hershey
    5*         Saturday, Apr. 27      at Bridgeport

The Sound Tigers went 12-1-1-1 in their final 15 games at home.

Overall, Bridgeport finished the season 15-6-1-1 in their last 23 games and 19-7-2-1 in their last 29 games. Their final record is 43-24-6-3; the 97 points is their most ever in a 76-game schedule and their highest total since Jack Capuano led them to a 106-point campaign in 2008-09 (80 games).  

Leaders: Goals: Steve Bernier 24; Assists: Chris Bourque 39; Points: Chris Bourque 54; +/-: Jeff Kubiak/Otto Koivula +14. Goalies: Christopher Gibson 22-11-5 (2.84 GAA); Jeremy Smith 21-13-4 (2.92 GAA)

Up Next

[MSG/MSG+/MSGGo, NBCSN, 88.7 WRHU-FM, 103.9 FM WRCN and Radio.com]

The Isles will look to complete a 3-0 series sweep for the first time since the 1983 Stanley Cup Final when they visit Pittsburgh for game 4.

The Isles have led nine best-of-seven series 3-0 and have won them all.  In NHL history, teams that lead 3-0 are 186-4; the 1975 Islanders are one of the "4", erasing a 3-0 lead against Pittsburgh.

The Isles are 6-8 all-time in playoff games in Pittsburgh and have won three of the last five dating back to game 7 of the 1993 Patrick Division Finals. 

Eric Hornick has been the statistician on Islander home game telecasts since January 21, 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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