Reilly Smith and Milan Lucic each had three points and Kevan Miller scored the winning goal off an Islander giveaway with 3.4 seconds to play in the middle period as the Boston Bruins defeated the Isles 5-2 before yet another sellout crowd of 16,170 at the Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum.
The loss drops the Isles one point behind Tampa Bay in the Eastern Conference race.
The Scoring: 1st Period 13:59 BOS Reilly Smith (10) ASST: Milan Lucic (17), David Krejci (17) 1 - 0 BOS 16:09 BOS PPG - Patrice Bergeron (12) ASST: Dougie Hamilton (19), Reilly Smith (15) 2 - 0 BOS
2nd Period 08:25 NYI John Tavares (23) ASST: Cal Clutterbuck (7), Travis Hamonic (10) 2 - 1 BOS 15:12 NYI Michael Grabner (5) ASST: Johnny Boychuk (21), John Tavares (25) 2 - 2 Tie 19:56 BOS Kevan Miller (2) ASST: NONE 3 - 2 BOS
3rd Period 01:45 BOS Torey Krug (10) ASST: Reilly Smith (16), Milan Lucic (18) 4 - 2 BOS 17:54 BOS EN - Milan Lucic (10) ASST: David Krejci (18), Zdeno Chara (9) 5 - 2 BOS
The Skinny: The loss breaks the Isles’ four game home winning streak…John Tavares had two points, extending his goal streak to four games and his point streak to five games. Tavares also had a career-high 9 shots on goal… Michael Grabner recorded his 87th goal as an Islander, tying Butch Goring for 36th on the all-time club list…Johnny Boychuk assisted on Grabner’s goal for his 100th career point; Boychuk has five assists in the last three games...Josh Bailey was held without a point for the first time in five games, leaving him with 199 career points.…Reilly Smith matched a career high with three points…The Isles had 45 shots on goal; the most allowed by the Bruins in any game this season and the most for the Isles vs. Boston since 2006.
Metropolitan Division Standings (Top 4) • ISLES 32-15-1=65 points (26 ROW) Lost to Boston 5-2 • Pittsburgh 27-13-8=62 points (25 ROW) Idle • Washington 25-14-9=59 points (24 ROW) Idle • NY Rangers 27-15-4=58 points (25 ROW) Lost to Montreal 1-0
This Week’s Schedule: • Isles: @ Detroit Saturday • Pittsburgh: @ New Jersey Friday, Vs Nashville Sunday • Washington: @Montreal Saturday, Vs St. Louis Sunday • NY Rangers: Vs Carolina Saturday
Year of the Fan: The Isles have sold-out their last seven home games, nine of the last ten and 13 of their 22 home dates this season. The 13 sellouts are the most for the Isles since they also had 21 full houses at the Old Barn in 2001-02.
Comparable Records The Isles are 32-15-1 thru 48 games. The Isles were 18-23-7 through 48 games and 19-23-7 through 49 games last season, when they did not record their 32st win until they defeated Montreal, 2-0 on April 10th (32-37-11).
Most wins in first 48 games: • 32-15-1 in 2014-15 • 32-7-9 in 1978-79 • 31-15-2 in 1983-84 • 30-10-8 in 1980-81 • 29-11-8 in 1977-78 • 29-12-7 in 1976-77 • 29-13-6 in 1981-82
Most points in first 48 games: • 73 in 1978-79 • 68 in 1980-81 • 66 in 1977-78 • 65 in 1976-77 • 65 in 2014-15 • 64 in 1983-84 • 62 in 1981-82
Home Sweet Home The Isles are 17-5-0 on Coliseum ice; the club record for most wins through 22 home games is 18 (18-0-4 in 1978-79).
Streakers The Isles have had a season of streaks, going 4-0-0 to open the season and then (in succession) 0-2-0, 2-0-0, 0-3-0, 13-2-0, 0-3-0, 7-1-1, 0-2-0, and are now 6-2-0 in their last eight games.
Winning Streaks (Season) 2 streaks of at least 5 games -- First time since the 1987-88 season that the Isles have had two winning streaks of at least five games. 5 streaks of at least 4 games -- First time since the 1984-85 season that the Isles have had five winning streaks of at least four games. 7 streaks of at least 3 games -- First time since the 1984-85 season that the Isles have had at least seven winning streaks of at least three games.
The Shots: Isles 15-16-14=45 Bruins 11-16-6=33
On the season, the Isles have outshot their opponents 1,605-1,317 for a +288 shot differential. The club record for differential for a season is +307 in 1976-77. The Isles have had only two other seasons over +150: (+254 in 1986-87 and +152 in 1975-76).
Isles had 2,537 shots on goal last season, most since a franchise-record 2,616 in 1992-93. Isles are currently on pace for a record-breaking 2,742 shots this year.
Home and Road The Islanders are 32-15-1 overall; 17-5-0 at home and 15-10-1 on the road.
Boston is 26-16-7 overall; 15-7-4 at home and 11-9-3 on the road.
By Division The Isles are 16-2-0 in Division games and are 16-13-1 in games against other divisions. They are 7-5-1 vs. the Atlantic Division, 4-5-0 vs. Central Division, and 5-3-0 vs. the Pacific Division.
The Isles finished last season 10-16-4 against the Met.
Metropolitan Hockey Club, Inc. The Isles are 16-2-0 against the Met Division, including nine straight wins. They are 10-0-0 at home (outscoring opponents 39-20) and 6-2-0 on the road. The Isles are 6-0 in overtime/shootouts against division foes, going 4-0 at home and 2-0 on the road.
It’s the Isles’ longest home winning streak vs. Divisional opponents to start the season since they went a perfect 16-0-0 vs. the Rangers, Flyers, Penguins and Capitals in the 1981-82 season.
In the Nets Jaroslav Halak made 28 saves but falls to 26-10-0 on the season, including 23-6-0 in his last 29 games. He is 8-4-0 in his career against Boston. Halak has won at least 25 games in each of the last five full seasons.
Tuukka Rask made 43 saves to improve to 21-11-7 this season. He is 7-3-0 in his career against the Isles.
26-Win Club Halak is the 6th goalie in Islander history to win at least 26 games in a season:
Player 26-win seasons Chico Resch 3 Rick DiPietro 3 Jaroslav Halak 1 Billy Smith 1 Ron Hextall 1 Chris Osgood 1
The club record for wins in a season is 32, shared by Billy Smith, Chris Osgood and Rick DiPietro.
Power Plays The Islanders were 0-2 on the power play, while Boston was 1-1.
The power play is 4-15 in the last five games (26.7%).
The penalty kill has allowed seven goals in 13 times short over the last five games (46.2%) after killing 27-29 (93.1%) over the prior 12 games. The Isles have allowed at least one power play goal in each of the five games.
The Isles are 18-6-0 when they score at least one power play goal and 14-9-1 when they do not. The Isles are 14-11-0 when they allow at least one power play goal and 18-4-1 when they do not.
Three is a Magic Number The Isles are 26-5-1 when they score at least three goals (including shootout winners) and are 6-10-0 when they do not.
One Goal Games The Isles are 18-3-1 in games decided by a single goal including 7-3-0 in regulation. They are 5-0 in games decided in overtime and are 6-1 in shootouts. Four games have been decided by two goals in which the second goal was an empty-netter. The Isles are 3-1 in those games.
First Goal (and Second Goal) The Isles are 18-9-1 when they score first and are 14-6-0 when they allow the opening goal. However, the Isles are 12-0-0 when they allow the opening goal but score the second goal. The Isles have rebounded from 2-0 deficits to win twice this season (New Jersey on December 15th (SO) and Pittsburgh on January 16th)
Second to The One Jack Capuano is the 2nd winningest coach in Islander history. Capuano is 150-135-40 behind the Islander bench. Among the 9 New York teams, only the Giants’ Tom Coughlin and the Yankees’ Joe Girardi have led their respective teams longer than Capuano.
Most games coached (Islanders): 1. Al Arbour 1,500 2. Jack Capuano 325 3. Mike Milbury 191 4. Terry Simpson 187 5. Scott Gordon 181
Most wins by Islander coaches: 1. Al Arbour 740 2. Jack Capuano 150 3. Terry Simpson 81 4. Peter Laviolette 77 5. Ted Nolan 74
They Said It John Tavares: "We had some more chances. It seemed like a half inch here or a foot there. It's part of the game. We fought back to make it 2-2, and obviously a couple of goals to end the second and start the third kind of took the life out of us.
Johnny Boychuk: “When they get a goal with three seconds left, it shouldn’t be a letdown, but it is. You have to just go into the next period – it was only 3-2 – and score the next goal and we didn’t. We just have to put this behind us.”
They Tweeted It @MattSaidman #Isles Tavares: "[Marchand] was head-locking me, the ref was staring right at it. Different set of rules I guess" @THERobertL Tough to lose this one to the Bruins, especially when it's their only visit to the Coliseum. But Tukka Rask was on his game tonight. #Isles @IslandersPride Well no magic tonight, boys. Move on and Bounce back on Saturday #isles @freelancehack Ok, so it was Grabner getting the tip. But a heck of a blast by Johnny there. #Islanders
The Coach I thought we played well enough to win the game. Obviously, the third goal was the turning point of the game.
Back-to-Backs The Isles are 7-1-0 in the front-end and 6-2-0 on the back end of back-to-backs this season. The Isles have swept 5 sets of back-to-back this season and are 1-1-0 in three sets.
The next back-to-back set is February 7th in Boston and February 8th in Buffalo.
Leading Ice Men Johnny Boychuk led all Isles with 21:26 of ice-time; Zdeno Chara led Boston in ice-time with 23:47.
Isles record by ice-time leaders: Johnny Boychuk (12-4-0), Travis Hamonic (11-1-1), Lubomir Visnovsky (2-1-0) John Tavares (2-4-0), Thomas Hickey (3-0-0), Nick Leddy (0-2-0), Frans Nielsen (1-0-0), Kyle Okposo (0-1-0) and Calvin deHaan (1-2-0).
John Tavares led the forwards with 20:33 of ice time. Isles record by Forward ice-time leaders: John Tavares (16-13-1), Kyle Okposo (12-1-0), Ryan Strome (1-0-0), Brock Nelson (1-1-0), Frans Nielsen (1-0-0) and Casey Cizikas (1-0-0).
In the Circle The Islanders won 26 of 56 draws (46%). Frans Nielsen won 8 of 12 for the Isles; Patrice Bergeron won 14 of 20 for Boston. The Isles won only 17 of 38 draws (45%) in the final two periods after winning 9 of 18 (50%) in the first period. The Isles won 1 of 2 draws on the power play and 2 of 2 draws on the penalty kill.
Heavy Hitters The Isles out-hit Boston 48-35. Matt Martin led the Isles with nine hits while Anders Lee added five.
There were no fights. The Isles have been involved in ten fights this season: Martin (7), Hamonic (2), Lee (1), and eight of the ten have been against Metropolitan Division opponents.
Giving Up the Body The Isles were credited with 17 blocked shots; Thomas Hickey led the Isles with three.
For the Corsi Crowd The Isles finished with a total Corsi advantage of 74-60 (including 29-8 in the third period). The Corsi stat measures shots attempted, both for and against (including blocks).
Nick Leddy lead the Isles with a +22 even-strength Corsi rating; Leddy and Johnny Boychuk were on-ice for a team-leading 76% of Corsi For events. Adam McQuaid (+10) led Boston.
Head of the Class Islander Captain John Tavares has 363 career points; he is 73 points ahead of Matt Duchene for most among 2009 draft picks. No other player in that draft is anywhere close. Tavares also has more goals and more assists than any other player in that draft.
All-time Winners The Islanders fall to 23 games over all-time NHL .500 (1437-1414-451 in 3,302 games).
The Isles have not been more than 1 game under NHL-.500 since January 11, 1978 and have finished every season since 1977-78 over all-time NHL .500.
Ironmen Nick Leddy and Brock Nelson are the Islanders’ reigning ironmen. Leddy has played 300 consecutive regular season NHL games, while Nelson has played 101 consecutive regular season Islander games.
Missing Men Kyle Okposo, Lubomir Visnovsky, Matt Carkner and Eric Boulton are on injured reserve. Matt Donovan was scratched.
The Isles have lost 171 games this season due to injury/illness.
All-time Islander Leader Board: John Tavares has: • 159 goals (14th all-time, 1 behind Pat Flatley and 9 behind Ziggy Palffy) • 204 assists (15th all-time and 45 behind Tomas Jonsson) • 363 points (14th all-time , 7 behind Stefan Persson and 81 behind Billy Harris) • 397 games played (38th among Islander skaters all-time and 4 behind Jean Potvin)
Kyle Okposo has: • 113 goals (23rd all-time, 3 behind Ray Ferraro and 5 behind Steve Thomas, Matt Moulson and Mark Parrish) • 185 assists (18th all-time, 1 behind Frans Nielsen, 8 behind Pierre Turgeon and 19 behind John Tavares) • 298 points (19th all-time and 35 behind Ziggy Palffy) • 436 games played (32nd among Islander skaters all-time, 6 behind Josh Bailey and 14 behind Scott Lachance)
Frans Nielsen has: • 94 goals (32nd all-time, 1 behind Mikko Makela and David Volek and 5 behind Trent Hunter) • 186 assists (17th all-time, 7 behind Pierre Turgeon and 18 behind John Tavares) • 280 points (23rd all-time, 6 behind Ed Westfall,10 behind Alexei Yashin and 12 behind Duane Sutter) • 494 games played (25th among Islander skaters all-time and 15 behind Rich Pilon)
Michael Grabner has: • 87 goals (tied-36th all-time with Butch Goring and 6 behind Travis Green)
Josh Bailey has: • 442 games played (31st among Islander skaters all-time, 8 behind Scott Lachance and 17 behind Trent Hunter)
Season Series Stats The season series is even at 1 game to 1 (and 2 points to 2).
The teams will meet again in Boston on February 8th.
Boston has won 7 of the last nine games between the teams on Long Island.
It Happened at the Coliseum … on JANUARY 29th 30 years ago tonight (1985) – Bryan Trottier scored a pair of second period goals to get the Isles started, as they rallied from a 4-0 deficit to earn a 4-4 tie with the Minnesota North Stars.
Trottier’s second goal, coming at 15:16 of the second period, was one for the record books, as he became the first player in Islander history to reach 1,000 career points. "These things mean a lot," said Trottier. "I have to think back to all the guys who played with me. Mike Bossy, my friend is No. 1. John Tonelli, and --all the way back--Garry Howatt, Bobby Bourne and Billy Harris. And Greg Gilbert, I can't forget him. They all helped, as did Denis Potvin on the power play so many times. It's a real big thing to me." Perhaps fittingly, Trottier was the 19th player in NHL history to reach that mark. Ironically, Trottier’s milestone goal was scored shorthanded, with Mike Bossy (of all people) in the penalty box.
His milestone goals came against former teammate Roland Melanson, who was making his first Coliseum appearance since being traded for a first round draft pick the previous November.
Denis Maruk had a goal and two assists for the North Stars as they scored twice in a 16 second span of the first period and twice in the first 7:34 of the second.
Duane Sutter cut the Stars lead to 4-3 early in the third period; John Tonelli tied the game for good at 6:57 of the third period.
Denis Potvin and Mike Bossy each had two assists for the Isles, who completed game 50 with a 26-21-3 record.
Melanson finished with 36 saves; Kelly Hrudey made 29 saves for the Isles. Hrudey’s backup was Todd Lumbard as Billy Smith served the first game of a six-game suspension. Lumbard, a 1981 Islander draft pick, never got off the bench in the games he backed up Hrudey, and never appeared in an NHL game.
So what ever became of Lumbard? He now is a part owner of the Regina Pats (WHL), and also owns a funeral home in Regina.
Also on this date: (1999) – In a rare Friday night home game, Zdeno Chara and Robert Reichel scored in the final four minutes as the Islanders rallied for a 4-4 tie with Phoenix. Chara’s first NHL goal came on a wrist shot from the right point that beat a screened Jimmy Waite.
All-time, the Isles have played seven January 29th games at the Coliseum and have compiled a 0-4-3 record on this date at 1255 Hempstead Turnpike in Uniondale.
On The Farm The Sound Tigers are 19-18-5-1 at the AHL All-Star Break. Bridgeport will get back into action on Friday in Hartford and returns home to host Portland on Saturday.
Up Next SATURDAY, JANUARY 31st—ISLANDERS AT DETROIT 2:00PM [MSG+ (Isles Pre-game at 1:30), 88.7 WRHU-FM, 103.9 LI News]
The Isles will head to Motown for the second time this season for a matinee with the Red Wings. Detroit came into play on Thursday tied with the Isles for the Eastern Conference lead, but lost to Tampa Bay to fall behind the Bolts in the overall standings.
The Isles won the first meeting back on December 20th by a 2-1 score. Anders Lee and Brock Nelson each had a goal and an assist for the Isles.
The Isles are 8-1-1 in their last ten meetings with the Red Wings, and have won five straight games in Detroit.
The teams will also meet at the Coliseum on March 29th at 5pm.
Eric Hornick has been the statistician on Islander home game telecasts since 1982. Information contained in “The Skinny” has been gathered from various sources. Follow Eric @ehornick on Twitter & on his blog www.nyiskinny.com.