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GOING FOR SIX OVER .500

by Staff Writer / New York Islanders

Islanders visit Bruins tonight for a final matchup prior to the All-Star Break; Also – a look back at a wild night in Carolina – Islanders (24-19-6) at Boston (24-19-5), 7 pm, TV: FSN NY 2, Radio: Bloomberg 1130


By Jason Lockhart and Adam Baruch


The Islanders can close out the traditional "first-half" of the season in the Eastern Conference's seventh spot tonight at 7 pm when they take on the Boston Bruins at TD BankNorth Garden.

A win against their Northeast Division rival would increase their lead over the Bruins to three points, and potentially four over the Rangers, depending on their outcome on Thursday against Atlanta.

Regardless, Thursday marks the final game prior to the All-Star break for the Islanders, who will play in their 50th game while currently boasting a 24-19-6 record.

Based on Ted Nolan's inclination to stick with what works, the Islanders should maintain their same lineup from their previous game – a 6-3 victory over the Carolina Hurricanes on Tuesday – with Rick DiPietro replacing Wade Dubielewicz, who was outstanding in goal for the win.

The Islanders will look to even the season series at 2-2-0 against a Boston Bruins team that has earned points in four of five games (3-1-1). Boston was defeated 8-2 by Montreal on Monday.

There was too much that went on in Tuesday's 6-3 contest not to re-visit some of the highlights.




WILD NIGHT IN CAROLINA
Dubie sets a career high, Sillinger ties a team record and the Islanders match a season mark during their 6-3 victory over the Hurricanes on Tuesday

The Islanders played in one of their more exciting – albeit nerve-racking – games of the season Tuesday night at RBC Center against the Carolina Hurricanes. When Sean Bergenheim scored while falling to the ice at 7:52 of the second period to make it a 4-1 Islanders lead, the game appeared to be wrapped up.

But like they did one night earlier, the Hurricanes showed some fight, cutting the lead to 4-3 early in the third period. However, Wade Dubielewicz stood tall, and the Islanders received insurance goals from Brendan Witt and Blake Comeau for a 6-3 victory.

With three shorthanded goals – two by Mike Sillinger – 44 stops by Dubie and a number of memorable moments, we decided to look a little deeper into the numbers to see just how impressive the 6-3 victory truly was.




SHORTHANDED BONANZA

With three shorthanded goals in Carolina on Tuesday night, the Islanders tied a franchise record for most shorthanded goals in a game. The feat has been accomplished twice before in Islanders history. Below is a look at each game and the goal scorers:


Date Opponent Score Goal Scorer
1/22/08 at Carolina W, 6-3 Sillinger (2), Park
12/22/83 vs. Washington  W, 6-1 Tonelli, Goring, Kallur
3/2/00 vs. Ottawa T, 5-5 Scatchard, Watt, Jokinen


Mike Sillinger became the eighth player in Islanders history to score two goals via the shorthanded style in the same game and first since Zigmund Palffy did it on April 17, 1999 against Pittsburgh. It was the tenth time the feat was accomplished by an Islander. Below is a closer look:

Player Date Opponent Score
Mike Sillinger 1/22/08 at Carolina W, 6-3
Zigmund Palffy 4/17/99 at Pittsburgh W, 7-2
Trevor Linden 4/1/98 vs. Tampa Bay W, 4-0
Patrick Flatley 12/19/92 at Pittsburgh W, 4-3
Mikko Makela 2/23/88 vs. Vancouver W, 6-1
Mike Bossy 12/12/84 at Pittsburgh L, 3-4
Butch Goring 11/19/83 vs. Washington W, 6-2
Butch Goring 10/14/82 vs. Pittsburgh W, 9-0
Butch Goring 12/5/81 at Minnesota W, 8-5
Denis Potvin 3/15/79 vs. Toronto W, 6-2





DUBIE EARNS HIS MARK

Wade Dubielewicz set a career-high by stopping 44 shots during Tuesday night’s 6-3 victory in Carolina. Dubielewicz’s previous high was 42 saves on March 31, 2007 against Ottawa. The 47 shots by Carolina and the eight Hurricanes power play opportunities were the most faced by the Islanders this season. Dubie also set a career-high for wins in a season. At 5-3-0, Dubie bested his previous mark of four wins set last season.







MORE MEMORABLE HAPPENINGS

The shorthanded goals and Dubielewicz’s performance were only part of the Islanders’ memorable night in Carolina. Below is a list of other things to happen Tuesday night.
  • The Islanders scored two shorthanded goals on the same penalty kill for the first time since October 20, 2000 when Zdeno Chara scored 9:42 into the first period and Roman Hamrlik followed it up by scoring at the 10:41 mark.
  • Brendan Witt scored his second goal of the season to give the Islanders a 5-3 advantage. Witt doubled his goal scoring output from last season and is one off his career-high of three goals, accomplished twice.
  • Blake Comeau recorded an empty-net goal and an assist on his way to a two-point night. The two-point night tied a career-high for Comeau.
  • The Islanders scored six goals for just the second time this season. The other coming on opening night when they defeated Buffalo, 6-4.
  • The Islanders road win streak has climbed to four games. It’s the longest such streak since they matched the feat from October 11 through November 15 of 2006. The Islanders have not won five straight on the road since the start of the 2001-02 season.

Check out the Islanders TV Post-Game Raw video of Ted Nolan’s thoughts on the 6-3 Islanders victory over Carolina.


Click here to discuss everything Islanders at ISLANDERMANIA, the team’s official message board.



Broadcast News

Steve Mears and Chris King have the call on Bloomberg 1130, while Howie Rose and Billy Jaffe can be seen tonight on FSN NY 2.

Islanders fans, to find the FSN NY 2 broadcast in your area, click here.

Don't forget to choose your "Pick 'N' Win" answers prior to the game's start.


Check out the Islanders TV Game Day tab for complete coverage of Thursday’s game.



For out-of-market viewers, catch the game live through Islanders TV on NHL Center Ice Online.





GAME NOTES

STATS
TEAM LEADERS
Islanders – Bill Guerin, 18 goals; Mike Comrie, 22 assists, 36 points; Andy Sutton, 76 PIM
Boston – Chuck Kobasew, 17 goals; Marc Savard, 43 assists, 54 points; Zdeno Chara, 77 PIM

SPECIAL TEAMS:
Islanders
- Power play: 16.2%; Penalty killing: 85.3%
Boston - Power play: 19.1%; Penalty killing: 78.2%

GOALTENDERS:
Islanders
Rick DiPietro (19-16-6, 2.54 GAA, .913 SV%); Wade Dubielewicz (5-3-0, 3.37, .898)
Boston – Tim Thomas (15-11-3, 2.38, .927); Alex Auld (8-11-1, 3.02, .897)

2007-08 SEASON SERIES:
Boston: 2-1-0

LAST MEETING
December 3, 2007 at the Nassau Coliseum: Bruins 3-1 win.

ROAD/HOME RECORDS:
Boston – 12-8-3 at home
Islanders – 11-10-3 on the road.


ISLANDERS
Goaltenders
34 Wade Dubielewicz
39 Rick DiPietro        

Defensemen
4   Bryan Berard
8   Bruno Gervais       
24 Radek Martinek    
25 Andy Sutton
32 Brendan Witt "A"
44 Freddy Meyer
47 Marc-Andre Bergeron

Forwards                  
7   Trent Hunter
10 Richard Park
11 Andy Hilbert
13 Bill Guerin "C"
18 Mike Sillinger "A"
20 Sean Bergenheim
26 Ruslan Fedotenko
28 Tim Jackman
57 Blake Comeau
63 Josef Vasicek
81 Miroslav Satan
89 Mike Comrie


BOSTON
Goaltenders

29 Alex Auld
30 Tim Thomas
 
Defense
6 Dennis Wideman
21 Andrew Ference
33 Zdeno Chara “C”
34 Shane Hnidy
44 Aaron Ward
45 Mark Stuart
 
Forwards
11 P.J. Axelsson
12 Chuck Kobasew
13 Glen Metropolit
16 Marco Sturm
17 Milan Lucic
22 Shawn Thornton
27 Glen Murray
42 Pascal Pelletier
46 David Krejci
53 Jeremy Reich
56 Petteri Nokelainen
60 Vladimir Sobotka
72 Peter Schaefer
81 Phil Kessel
91 Marc Savard



NOTES
  • The Islanders have currently won four straight games on the road (1/11 – present).
  • The last time the Islanders won five consecutive road games was to begin the 2001-02 season.
  • Rick DiPietro comes into tonight with a 2.10 goals against average in 13 career games against Boston (6-4-2-1).
  • The Islanders are fourth in the NHL and first in the Eastern Conference in penalty kill (85.3%).
  • If the Islanders win tonight they will have 25 wins through the first 50 games of the season for the first time since the 2001-02 season (25-17-5-3).




All-Time Series Results:
Overall: 48-61-21-1       
Home: 29-28-10-0         
Road: 19-33-11-1          
OT: 5-2-15

Last Win: 11/24/07, Islanders 2 vs. Bruins 1
Last Loss:  12/3/07, Islanders 1 vs. Bruins 3
Last OT/SO:  L; 2/10/07, Islanders 3 at Bruins 4 (SO)

2007-08 Season Series:
November 23, 2007 - Islanders 1 at Boston Bruins 2
November 24, 2007 - Islanders 2 vs. Boston Bruins 1
December 3, 2007 - Islanders 1 vs. Boston Bruins 2
January 24, 2008 - Islanders at Boston Bruins, 7:00 p.m.
*All times EST






MEET THE COACH
An IBC and NYI365 special event featuring a Chalk Talk from Ted Nolan and his staff


The Islanders Business Club and NYI365 have brought their members closer to the team than ever before.

That trend will continue on Wednesday, January 30, when the Islanders invite IBC members and NYI365 season ticketholders to an intimate sit-down with Islanders head coach Ted Nolan at Doolin's Pub from 9:15-10:30 am.

While enjoying a special breakfast in Doolin's, located in the lower lobby of the Nassau Coliseum, guests will have the opportunity to listen to Ted, as well as assistant coaches Gerard Gallant and John Chabot, talk about the state of the Islanders and what to expect as the Islanders make a final playoff push. Those in attendance will also be given the opportunity to ask the coaches questions at the conclusion of the talk.

But the event doesn't end there. Following the talk, guests are invited to enter the arena and watch the Islanders practice, which begins at noon. Every member at the event will also receive a Ted Nolan photo.

To purchase a $25 ticket to this event, please e-mail Catie Bennett at Catie.Bennett@newyorkislanders.com. Space is limited to the first 125 people, so order your tickets today to ensure a spot at this exclusive event.

Check out the Islanders Business Club's website at www.islandersbusinessclub.com





Search "Business" in the Islanders TV console to see video from past Islanders Business Club events.
 




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