The Islanders 20-man roster sent to Calgary was undeniably young. Yes, there was a veteran presence, but there were also a lot of fresh faces looking for their opportunity to break into the league. With just 13 shots on net in 60 minutes of play, the team struggled to establish momentum and lost 2-0 to the Flames on Tuesday night at Scotiabank Saddledome.
|Islanders forward Kirill Kabanov gets to the dirty area around the goal looking for rebounds in his first exhibition game of the 2011 preseason. |
“We really seemed to fight the puck in the first and bits of the second,” said Islanders assistant coach Dean Chynoweth. “By the end of the second (period), we started to generate a little bit of offense, but I think the biggest thing was turning down shots when we had the opportunity or getting shots blocked or missing the net.”
The team may have had trouble creating chances and producing offensively, which Chynoweth called “disappointing,” but he also mentioned seeing some offensive upside to Islanders linemates and rookie forwards Ryan Strome
and Kirill Kabanov
“I thought a couple of our young guys, Kirill Kabanov
and Ryan Strome
, played very well for young guys that haven’t seen much of the NHL. So that was a positive from that side.”Evgeni Nabokov
and Mikko Koskinen
made their Islanders preseason debuts. Nabokov made 15 saves through 40 minutes, while letting up a shorthanded goal from Curtis Glencross at 4:10 of the second period.
I liked (Nabokov) a lot. Our plan going in was just to give him two periods and then let Mikko (Koskinen) go for the third. We probably could have left him in. He’s chomping at the bit to get going. He’s been real good all camp. - Dean Chynoweth
“I liked him a lot,” Chynoweth said. “Our plan going in was just to give him two periods and then let Mikko (Koskinen) go for the third. We probably could have left him in. He’s chomping at the bit to get going. He’s been real good all camp.”
Koskinen made five saves and allowed one goal in 18:32. Lee Stempniak scored at 4:21 to provide the final margin.
Defenseman Matt Donovan
was much more comfortable in his second exhibition game, and he led all Islanders defensemen in time-on-ice (23:28). His four shots made up nearly a third of the team’s shots on net, and he added three blocked shots.
“I felt a little bit better and a lot less nervous than the game against Boston,” Donovan said.
Disappointed with the loss, he said, “We just couldn’t burry the chances that we had.”