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New York Islanders @ Dallas Stars

by Dyan LeBourdais / New York Islanders
Team Record: 7-11-5

Last Game: 5-4 SOL @ CHI
Season Series: 0-0-0 of 2
Team Record: 15-9-1
Last Game: 3-2 W vs. OTT
Season Series: 0-0-0 of 2
Friday night was a good night for the Islanders offense. Islanders forward Matt Moulson, named the second star of the game, was one of the best players on the ice in the Islanders  matchup with Chicago. Moulson not only put a team-high seven shots on goal in 19:10 of ice time, he extended his goal and point streak to three games as he scored the Islanders second goal of the night and also notched an assist on linemate PA Parenteau's power play goal which tied the score at three. Moulson elevated his totals to 3 goals and 1 assist in the last 3 games and 15 points on the season (9 goals, 6 assists) for third on the team in scoring.

With a goal and an assist from Parenteau and two secondary assists from John Tavares, Moulson's linemates remain tied for the team lead in scoring with 18 points. However, Moulson's nine goals and Parenteau's 14 assists lead the team.

"Everyone showed up (Friday night)," Parenteau said. "It was a good team effort and a fun game to be a part of."
Linemates Eric Nystrom and Radek Dvorak may not be Dallas’ leading scorers, but they are the players who've led the Stars to their 4-1-1 record in the last six games.

Nystrom (the son of Islanders alumnus Bob Nystrom) scored the Stars game-winning goal over the Ottawa Senators on Thursday night, earning first star of the game honors and propelling his totals to 4 goals and 2 assists in the last six games. His nine goals this season are just two shy of his career-high, which he set during the 2009-10 season with the Calgary Flames. His goals are also just one shy of Loui Eriksson, who holds the team lead, while his 11 points have him tied for seventh in overall scoring.

Dvorak also scored six points in the last six games (3 goals, 3 assists), including the game-tying goal against Ottawa as well as last week against Toronto, where the Stars ultimately fell in the shootout. His scoring in the last six games doubled the 17-year-pros scoring totals for the previous 19 games, now sixth on the team in scoring with 12 points (3 goals, 9 assists). If Dvorak continues at this pace, he could post his highest numbers following the 2004-05 lockout season.
Though the Islanders fell 5-4 in the shootout last night in Chicago, they continued their string of success on the road, extending their streak to 2-0-1. Playing in Dallas on Saturday night before heading home to Long Island, the Islanders will look to continue their scoring success to earn 7-of-8 possible points on this four-game road trip.

“(Chicago) is one of the best teams in the league right now,” goaltender Al Montoya said. “So to show where we are and just raise our bar, raise our level, I mean we aren’t satisfied with (Friday night), but we know what we’re capable of doing and the fact that we keep bringing it on the road really says something about this team and big things to come.”

The Islanders received scoring from three of four lines with Kyle Okposo, Matt Moulson, PA Parenteau and Nino Niederreiter earning a tally. But with 41 shots through 65 minutes, there were a lot more chances to be had and that’s exactly what kind of momentum and energy the Islanders will need as they face the Stars.

“We want to play in their zone,” Montoya said. “We don’t want them to come to us, we want to take the play to them and that’s the kind of hockey we’re meant to play with the skill we have in this locker room. It’s paying off.”
Contributions from some unexpected sources continue to help the Dallas Stars achieve success.

Expecting that same widespread production, the Stars look for a third consecutive victory and aim to continue their recent success against the visiting New York Islanders on Saturday night.
While top-line players like Jamie Benn, Loui Eriksson, Mike Ribeiro and Michael Ryder have consistently paced Dallas (15-9-1) offensively, the recent play of third-line grinders Eric Nystrom, Radek Dvorak and Vernon Fiddler has helped the Stars win four of six following a five-game skid. (Continue Reading)

The last time the Islanders and the Stars met, it was opening night of the 2010-11 season. Dallas ultimately won 5-4 in the shootout, but it wasn't without a fight. Jamie Benn (PG) and Stephane Robidas scored to give the Stars a 2-0 lead by the end of the first. James Wisniewski cut the lead in half with a power play goal, but Brenden Morrow helped the Stars recapture their two-goal lead. Morrow did it again, scoring his second goal after former Captain Doug Weight scored another PPG for the Isles. Blake Comeau brought it within 4-3 and Matt Moulson scored the game-tying goal with 2:39 left in regulation. Mike Ribiero scored the only goal in the shootout for the Stars victory.
- Mark Katic - Shoulder (9/24 vs. NJ) - 23 games missed (Out indefinitely)

- Evgeni Nabokov - Groin (11/17) - 7 games missed (Out indefinitely)

- Mark Eaton - Knee (11/21) - 5 games missed (6 weeks)

- Jay Pandolfo - Broken foot (11/26) - 2 games missed (Out 4-6 weeks)
Power Play %: 16.9%
Penalty Kill %: 80.7%
Home Record: 5-6-2
Road Record: 2-6-3
Goals For: 47
Goals Against: 74
Power Play %: 15.2%
Penalty Kill %: 82.9%
Home Record: 9-3-1
Road Record: 6-6-0
Goals For: 65
Goals Against: 67
(Answer from 12/02: Clark Gillies and Mike Bossy. It happened on Oct. 10, 1979, but it still holds up as the two fastest goals in franchise history.)
Check out the Islanders depth chart following Head Coach Jack Capuano's morning availability.

Stars (Expected) Lineups
Forwards: Eriksson-Benn-Ryder, Vincour-Ribeiro-Ott, Nystrom-Fiddler-Dvorak, Barch-Wandell-Peterson

Souray-Robidas, Pardy-Grossman, Fistric-Larsen

Raycroft, Bachman

Expected scratches:
Burish, Goligoski, Morrow, Daley, Lehtonen

Islanders goaltender Al Montoya on rebounding after a slow second period in Chicago: "Earlier in the season, we would have stayed hemmed in. This is the first time all season I’ve seen us really take it to them, go full force. We didn’t let up. We were in their zone the whole third period, I think I saw one or two shots. We did a great job."

Cory Wright contributed to this report
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