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Game Preview: Islanders at Capitals

Barry Trotz returns to Washington as the Islanders take on the Capitals

by Kelsey Smith NYIslanders / NewYorkIslanders.com

NEW YORK ISLANDERS (27-15-4) AT WASHINGTON CAPITALS (27-14-5)

7:30 PM | CAPITAL ONE ARENA 

WATCH: MSG+ | MSG GO | NHL.TV | SNE | SN1

LISTEN: 88.7FM WRHU | 103.9FM LI NEWS | RADIO.COM/ISLANDERS


SEASON SERIES: NYI TRAILS 1-0-0

This is the second of four meetings between the Metro Division rivals this season. The Islanders lost the series opener to the Caps by a score of 4-1 at the Barclays Center on Nov. 26. Thomas Greiss was in net for the Islanders. Valtteri Filppula scored the lone goal for the Islanders.

ISLES-CAPITALS NOTES:

- The Islanders (58 points) can leapfrog the Capitals (59 points) with a win on Friday night. If the Islanders win and Columbus (59 points) loses to Montreal, the Isles can finish Friday night in first place in the Metropolitan Division.

- Islanders Head Coach Barry Trotz returns to coach his first game in Capital One Arena in Washington, D.C. since guiding the Capitals to their franchise's first Stanley Cup last spring. Trotz will look to record his first win against his former team. 

- The Islanders are 4-6-0 in their last 10 games against the Capitals.

- Ryan Pulock is currently riding a three-game point streak against Washington (1G, 4A). 



ISLANDERS NOTES: 

- The Islanders have won three straight games, most recently beating the New Jersey Devils 4-1 at NYCB Live to conclude their four-game homestand. 

- The Islanders are 8-2-0 in their last 10 games, and 13-3-0 in their last 16 - the best record in the NHL since Dec. 15. The Islanders have won five straight road games and have not lost a road game since Dec. 20, 2018 at Vegas.

- The Islanders are 11-5-1 against divisional opponents this season and have recorded at least one win against every Metro team this season except for Washington. 

- Anders Lee has registered points in seven of his last eight games played (4G, 6A), and is currently riding a three-game point streak. Lee had four points (2G, 2A) in four games against Washington last season.

- Nick Leddy has an assist in seven of his last 10 games played (7A). Thursday's game against New Jersey was Leddy's third multi-assist game of this season (2A). All of Leddy's multi-point games have come against Metro Division opponents, as well as half of his season point total (1G, 8A out of 18 total points). 

- Since returning to the lineup after missing four games with an injury, Jordan Eberle has six points (4G, 2A) in seven games. Eberle had his fifth multi-point game this season (1G, 1A) in Friday's win against the Devils. Eberle enters the Caps game with points in three straight games. 

- Mathew Barzal is the Islanders leading scorer with 43 points (13G, 30A) in his second NHL season. Barzal had points in three of the four meetings against the Caps last season.

- Isles rookie forward Michael Dal Colle netted his first NHL goal on Thursday vs New Jersey. 

- The Islanders are one of three teams in the NHL that currently have eight or more players on their roster with ten or more goals (Vancouver, Vegas. Filppula and Eberle each scored their 10th goals of the season against St. Louis on Jan. 15, bringing the Islanders total to eight players in double-digits. Anders Lee leads the team with 18 goals, while Brock Nelson (16), Mathew Barzal (13), Anthony Beauvillier (12), Casey Cizikas (11) and Josh Bailey (10) all have at least 10. 

-With Robin Lehner playing the first half of the back-to-back Thursday night on Long Island, Thomas Greiss will likely play against Washington. Greiss has played in 25 games this season posting a 13-8-1 record with a 2.62 GAA and a .918 SV%. Greiss made 38 saves in a 5-1 win over Tampa on Sunday.

-The Islanders have shined in back-to-back games this season with a 5-2-0 in the front end of back-to-backs and 6-0-0 in back half. It is the first time since the 2006-07 season that the Isles have won six straight back-ends. 

- The Islanders penalty kill is a perfect 12-for-12 over the past four games. 


CAPITALS NOTES: 

- The Capitals have lost their last two games, and their record is 4-4-2 in their last 10 games.

- The Capitals rank second in a very competitive Metro Division, with 59 points. Washington is 9-3-2 in division play this season. 

- Alex Ovechkin currently leads the NHL in goals with 33 goals in 46 games. The Washington Capitals Captain leads his team not only in goals but also in points (52) and shots (183). Ovechkin enters the match up riding a four-game point streak.

- John Carlson and Nicklas Backstrom both rank in the top 20 assist leaders in the NHL. Carlson, a defenseman, has 37 while Backstrom, a centerman, has 34. 

- Washington's starting goaltender depends on the status of Braden Holtby, who sustained an eye injury in the Capitals last game against Nashville. 


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