Despite a four-game sweep over the Pittsburgh Penguins, the New York Islanders had no illusions about going undefeated during a playoff run.
So the Islanders, who've adopted an even-keel, resilient personality all season, weren't too fazed by Friday night's 1-0 OT loss in Game 1 to the Carolina Hurricanes when they reconvened at Barclays Center for practice on Saturday.
"You're not going to go 16-0 in the playoffs, I don't think anyone expected that," Jordan Eberle said. "This is our first little bump, but with the character of this group, we need to respond and I know we will. We know how we need to play to win and we have a lot of guys in here who have won before."
Video: Practice Update 4/27: Jordan Eberle
That attitude has been instilled by Jack Adams-finalist Barry Trotz, who said the Hurricanes "won Game 1, not the series," on Friday night and was equally measured during his post-practice media session on Saturday.
"I do remember a team I was a part of last year that didn't win the first two games," Trotz said, referencing the Washington Capitals 0-2 start against the Columbus Blue Jackets in the First Round last spring. "And we are facing a team that didn't win their first two games last series. If that were the case, it'd be a best of two, but that's not the case. It's a race to four."
The Islanders went an entire season without losing three straight games in regulation, and only lost consecutive games five times since Dec. 15.
"It's forsure a test, but I think we have all the confidence in the world that this group will respond the right way," Brock Nelson said. "We did good things in the first game, obviously didn't get the result, but there are areas we can be better at and elevate to get ourselves in a better position to win a game. That's our focus today and into tomorrow."
The Islanders felt they played a reasonably-good game against the Hurricanes on Friday. Shots were nearly even (32-31 Carolina), while the Isles won 59% of face-offs (36-23), outhit the Hurricanes 44-38 and had a handful of grade-A chances that were denied by a banner night from Petr Mrazek. On most nights, they'd sign up for a one-goal night from Vezina-finalist Robin Lehner.
Trotz said Friday he'd consider "subtle changes" but the overall sentiment in the room that the Islanders don't need to do anything radically different on Sunday.
Video: Practice Update 4/27: Barry Trotz
"There were some good things we did last night and some things we can clean up obviously," Mathew Barzal. "We just have to get a win tomorrow and focus on the process. It's a race to four. Lots of teams have lost their first game and gone on to win series. For us, it's about getting back to basics and getting a win tomorrow."
KOMAROV, MAYFIELD TAKE MAINTENANCE DAYS:
Leo Komarov and Scott Mayfield were both given maintenance days on Saturday. Both are expected to return to the lineup for Game 2.