How will the Islanders respond?
How will they respond to the sting of two bad losses? 5-1 to Pittsburgh in front of the home crowd and a 6-0 defeat in Ottawa?
How will they respond to Steve Stirling, known as a player's coach with a lot of patience, telling Janne Niinimaa to leave the ice during practice yesterday?
Yes, it's early in the season, but it's games like tonight against a local rival on the road that say a lot about a team. It all starts tonight at 7:30 pm in the Meadowlands. To make sure you get Howie Rose and Joe Micheletti, tune it to MSG Network. Pre-game starts at 7:00 pm.
Here are your game notes:
ALL-TIME RECORD vs. NEW JERSEY
The Islanders have a lifetime regular-season record of 92-53-22-2 against the New Jersey Devils. At home, the Islanders have a lifetime record of 55-19-11-0 while in 84 road games, have a record of 37-34-11-2 against the Devils. Last season, the Islanders were 3-2-0-1 against the Devils, including a 1-1-0-1 record at Continental Airlines Arena. The Islander's last win at New Jersey was on December 26, 2003, a 4-3 victory. In their last five visits to the Meadowlands, the Islanders are 1-3-0-1 and are 2-5-1-2 in their last 10.
ON THE ROAD AGAIN
The Islanders play game two of a three-game road trip tonight against the Devils. The Islanders have lost their last three road games and have been outscored, 13-4, in the three losses. The Islanders will wrap-up the road trip in Philadelphia on Thursday. Earlier this season, the Islanders lost 5-1 to the Flyers at the Wachovia Center on October 15. The Islanders, who are 2-5 on the road this season, will play seven of their next eight games away from the Nassau Coliseum. The Islanders have been outscored, 29-17, in seven road games this season.
THE CAPTAIN'S DOING HIS PART
Team captain Alexei Yashin leads the team in scoring with 17 points (8+9) in 14 games. Yashin has recorded a point in 11 of 14 games, including four multiple-point games. He had a three-game point streak snapped on Saturday. Yashin recorded five points (2+3) from October 29-November 3. He had a season-high seven-game point streak from October 10-25, collecting 11 points (5+6). In addition to his seven-game point streak, Yashin recorded an assist in five consecutive games (October 15-25). The point streak was Yashin's longest since the 2003-04, when he had a nine-game point streak with 13 points (3+10) from November 14-December 3.
The Islanders have a record of 1-2-0-0 in the month of November. The Islanders will play a total of 14 games this month, six at home and eight on the road. Last season, the Islanders were 5-8-0-0 in November.
The Islanders had a record of 5-6-0-0 in the month of October. Last season, the Islanders were 4-3-2-0 in October.
PLAYING AT HOME
The Islanders are 4-3-0 at home this season, scoring 22 goals and allowing 26. The Islanders had their two-game home winning streak snapped with a 6-4 loss to the Buffalo Sabres on October 29. The Islanders have lost two of their last three home games. The six goals were the most allowed by the Islanders at home since the N.Y. Rangers won 6-3 on February 26, 2004.
TOUGH TO BEAT AT HOME
The Islanders had a record of 25-11-4-1 at home during the 2003-04 season. The Islanders ranked first in the East and third in the NHL in home wins. The 25 wins and 55 points at home were the most in 19 years (1985-86 season). During the 2003-04 campaign, the Islanders had a nine-game unbeaten streak (6-0-3-0) in February marked the longest streak since the 1989-90 season.
Center Shawn Bates scored the game-winning goal with 28.2 seconds left in overtime to lift the Islanders to a 4-3 win over the Boston Bruins on Tuesday at the Nassau Coliseum. The Islanders are 2-0 in overtime this season and are 64-60-194 lifetime in overtime. Last season, the Islanders had a record of 2-4-11 in overtime.
LEADING AFTER TWO
The Islanders are unbeaten in 56 games (48-0-8) when taking a lead into the third period. The streak is the longest active streak in the NHL. During the 2003-04 season, the Islanders were 26-0-5 when leading after two periods. The Islanders outscored their opponent, 87-61 in the third period in 2003-04. The streak began on December 28, 2002 with a 3-0 win vs. Carolina.
The Islanders are 5-2 this season when scoring first and 1-6 when the opposition scores the first goal of the game. Buffalo, Carolina, Philadelphia, Montreal, the N.Y. Rangers and Pittsburgh have scored first in games against the Islanders this season, while New York has scored first against Carolina, Washington, the Rangers (twice), Atlanta, Buffalo, Boston and Ottawa. In 2003-04, the Islanders had a record 11-23-6-3 when their opponents scored first. They were 27-6-5-1 when they scored the first goal of the game.
The Islanders were 0-5 on the power play on Saturday against the Ottawa Senators. The Islanders have not scored a power play goal in the last three games and in the last five games, have scored one power play goal on 28 chances. The Islanders have scored a power play goal in nine of 14 games this season. Overall, the Islanders are 13-96 (13.5%) on the power play. In 2003-04, the Islanders recorded at least one power play goal in 38 of 82 games. They had a record of 27-9-3, including a mark of 16-4-1at home in games that they scored at least one power play goal.
The Islanders killed off seven of Ottawa's 10 power play chances on Saturday. The Islanders have allowed five power play goals and one shorthanded goal in the last two games. Overall, the Islanders have killed off 92 of 115 (80.0%) power play attempts in 14 games this season. The Islanders have recorded three shorthanded goals this season. Arron Asham scored a shorthanded goal in the Islander's 5-4 win over the Rangers on October 20. Earlier in the season, Shawn Bates scored the first shorthanded goal of the season in the Isle's 3-1 win over the Hurricanes on October 8 and Jason Blake scored a short handed tally in the Islander's 5-3 win over Washington on October 13.
SHOTS ON GOAL
The Islanders have been outshot, 475-398, through the first 14 games of the 2005-06 season. The Islanders have been outshot in 11 of 14 games this season, including six straight from October 15-27. The Islanders are allowing an average of 33.9 shots per game. They have a record of 5-6 when they have been outshot and have a record of 1-2 in games when they have outshot the opponent. The Islanders have also allowed 40 or more shots in a game twice during the season, and have a record of 1-1.
The Islanders completed their first set of back-to-back games of the season with a sweep of the New York Rangers on October 19-20. The Islanders are scheduled to play 10 sets of back-to-back games during the 2005-06 regular season, four fewer than they had in 2003-04. The Islanders played 14 back-to-back sets in 2003-04, posting a 13-13-1-1 record in those 28 contests; 8-6-0-0 in the first games of back-to-back sets and 5-7-1-1 in the second games.
DiPIETRO's PERFECT THIS SEASON
Goaltender Rick DiPietro improved to a perfect 4-for-4 against penalty shots when he stopped Dany Heatley at 14:12 of the second period. Heatley was awarded the penalty shot when he was taken down by defenseman Alexei Zhitnik. The penalty shot was the second attempted against the Islanders this season and the 20th in team history. Earlier in the season, DiPietro stopped Atlanta's Patrik Stefan on a penalty shot in the second period on October 27. Stefan was awarded a penalty shot at 4:16 of the second period when he was hauled down by Janne Niinimaa on a breakaway.
Wednesday, November 9: Flyers Skate Zone, Vorhees, N.J., 12-2 p.m.
Thursday, November 10: Game-day skate at Wachovia Center, 11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m., Game at Philadelphia, 7p.m.
Friday, November 11: Islanders Iceworks, Syosset, N.Y., 12-2 p.m., 11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m., Game at Philadelphia, 7 p.m.
Saturday, November 12: Game-day skate at Nassau Coliseum, 10-11:15 a.m., Game vs. Boston, 7 p.m.
Sunday, November 13: Islanders Iceworks, Syosset, N.Y., 10-11:30 a.m.
Monday, November 14: Game-day skate at Mellon Arena, Game at Pittsburgh, 7:30 p.m.
SCHEDULE SUBJECT TO CHANGE
UPCOMING SCHEDULE (NEXT 10 GAMES)
Thursday, November 10 at Philadelphia, 7 p.m.
Saturday, November 12 vs. Boston, 7 p.m.
Monday, November 14 at Pittsburgh, 7:30 p.m.
Wednesday, November 16 at Atlanta, 7 p.m.
Thursday, November 17 at Tampa Bay, 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, November 19 at Florida, 7:30 p.m.
Wednesday, November 23 vs. Buffalo, 7 p.m.
Friday, November 25 vs. Ottawa, 2 p.m.
Saturday, November 26 at Philadelphia, 2 p.m.
Tuesday, November 27 vs. Philadelphia, 7 p.m.
The Islanders have a total attendance of 88,361 after seven games at Nassau Coliseum, for an average of 12,623 (77.8% capacity) with one sellout. Last season after seven games at Nassau Coliseum, the Islanders had a total attendance of 84,866, an average of 12,266 (74.7% capacity) with one sellout. The listed seating capacity for the Nassau Coliseum is 16,234.