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Game Preview: Blue Jackets make first visit to Barclays Center

by Katie Foglia / Columbus Blue Jackets

The Blue Jackets visit the New York Islanders at Barclays Center in Brooklyn for the first time on Tuesday.

In their most recent outing, the Islanders were blanked by the Philadelphia Flyers at Wells Fargo Center.

The game marked the second time this season the Islanders were shut out. Flyers goaltender Steve Mason made all 20 saves against the Islanders and, on the opposite end of the rink, Islanders goaltender Jaroslav Halak made 27 saves in a losing effort.

Despite their offensive struggles as of late, the Islanders have had a big showing so far this season from forwards Kyle Okposo (31 points), captain John Tavares (29 points) and Frans Nielsen (27 points).

In between the pipes for the Islanders, goaltenders Halak and Thomas Greiss have proved to be a solid tandem. Halak (10-8-3) has a .920 save percentage, and Greiss (12-6-2) has a .928 save percentage.

The Islanders currently sit in third place, behind the Washington Capitals and New York Rangers, in the Metropolitan Division. Currently in a bit of a slide, they've lost seven out of their last 11 games (4-7-0), and are now 0-3-0 in Metro Division games in 2016.

The Blue Jackets (15-24-4) game against the Islanders marks the first of back-to-back games; they'll head to Toronto to play the Maple Leafs on Wednesday at the Air Canada Centre. For updates on Monday’s practice, check out the practice notebook on

On Dec. 12, the Islanders made their second visit to Nationwide Arena this season and picked up their second win in two tries. Although the Blue Jackets battled back on two occasions to force overtime, Kyle Okposo’s overtime goal lifted the Islanders past the Jackets.

Cam Atkinson notched the Jackets’ second equalizer of the game at 8:20 of the third period, and Brandon Saad opened the scoring for Columbus at 5:08 of the second period.

During the 3-on-3 overtime, the Jackets made a costly mistake of turning the puck over and it cost them the game. Okposo’s game-winning goal came on a 2-on-0 break and sealed a 3-2 win for the visitors.

The Blue Jackets are 14-4-4 in the all-time series against the Islanders. These two teams will meet five times during the 2015-16 season.

Kyle Okposo currently leads the Islanders with 31 points. In 40 games, he’s notched 10 goals and added 21 assists to rise to the top of the team scoring lead.

The NHL veteran is in the midst of his ninth career season, all of which have been spent with the Islanders - the team that drafted him. He was selected seventh overall by the Islanders during the 2006 NHL Draft. At age 27, Okposo is on pace for one of his best seasons to date.

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