Carolina 4, Isles 3 (SO)
The Islanders are headed back to the playoffs for the first time since 2007! John Tavares scored with 1:01 remaining to force overtime, and although the Islanders would eventually lose the shootout to Carolina before a crowd of 16,601 at PNC Center, the Isles clinched a playoff spot a few minutes later when Washington beat Winnipeg. Tavares’ goal allowed the Islanders to extend their point streak to 11 straight games (8-0-3); matching their longest point streak since the 1981-82 Islanders won 15 straight games. The Islanders are also 11-1-3 in their last 15, and coupled with the Rangers’ loss to Florida, remain sixth in the East, two points ahead of both Ottawa and the Rangers.
03:57CARA. Semin (13) Wrist - ASST: E. Staal (32) AND J. McBain (6) 1 - 0 CAR
06:04NYIB. Boyes (10) Deflected - ASST: M. Streit (21) AND M. Moulson (28) 1 - 1 TIE
16:20CARJ. Staal (10) Tip-In - ASST: J. Harrison (7) AND J. Tlusty (14) 2 - 1 CAR
07:34NYIJ. Bailey (11) Wrist - ASST: K. Okposo (19) AND F. Nielsen (23) 2 - 2 TIE
17:45CARP. Dwyer (8) Snap - ASST: J. Staal (20) AND T. Ruutu (5) 3 - 2 CAR
18:59NYIJ. Tavares (27) Tip-In - ASST: M. Moulson (29) AND K. Okposo (20) 3 - 3 TIE
Frans Nielsen (NG), Riley Nash (G), Brad Boyes (NG), Jeff Skinner (G)
The Isles are 11-1-3 in the last 15 and remain eight games over .500 for the first time since the end of the 2006-07 season (40-30-12) … The Isles have outscored their opponents 16-6 in the third period over the last 15 games … The Isles (excluding shootouts) have now scored 133 goals and allowed 133 … Frans Nielsen’s assist gives him 196 career points, passing Butch Goring for 39th place in Isles history … Jiri Tlusty extended his point streak to six games (4-4-8); Tlusty had six points in the three games against the Isles this season … Both Kyle Okposo and Frans Nielsen extended point streaks to four games … John Tavares now has 27 goals, good for third in the NHL … Only Alex Ovechkin (31) and Steven Stamkos (28) have more. Twelve of Tavares’ goals have come in third period and eight of his goals have tied the game.
First Time in a Long Time
The Isles have 25 points (11-1-3) in the last 15 games for the first time since the 1989-90 season (14-1-0).
The Isles have the second-best road record in the East, behind only Pittsburgh. They have guaranteed themselves a .500+ record on the road for the first time since 2006-07, and have their second-best record ever through 22 road games:
Most points in first 22 road games (all time):
•32 in 1976-77 (14-4-4)
•31 in 2012-13 (14-5-3)
•29 in 1980-81 (13-6-3)
•27 in 1978-79 (11-6-5)
•26 in 1983-84 (12-8-2)
The club record through 24 road games, which is all the Isles will play this regular season, is 34 points in 1976-77. The Isles need three points in the final two games to match that.
•1 Pittsburgh (Atlantic Champion) 46 games 35-11-0 70 points (32 ROW) Next game: Thursday at New Jersey
•2 Boston (Northeast Leader) 45 games 27-13-5 59 points (23 ROW) Next game: Thursday vs. Tampa Bay
•3 Washington (Southeast Champion) 46 games 26-18-2 54 points (22 ROW) Next game: Thursday vs. Ottawa
•4 Montreal 46 games 27-14-5 59 points (24 ROW) Next game: Thursday at Winnipeg
•5.Toronto 45 games 25-15-5 55 points (24 ROW) Next game: Wednesday at Tampa Bay
•6 NY Islanders 46 games 24-16-6 54 points (20 ROW) Next game: Thursday at Philadelphia
•7 Ottawa 45 games 23-16-6 52 points (19 ROW) Next game: Thursday at Washington
•8 NY Rangers 46 games 24-18-4 52 points (20 ROW) Next game: Thursday at Carolina
•9 Winnipeg 47 games 24-20-3 51 points (22 ROW) Final game: Thursday vs. Montreal
Pittsburgh, Boston, Washington, Montreal, Toronto and the Islanders have clinched playoff berths.
Home and Road
The Islanders are 24-16-6 overall, 10-11-3 at home and 14-5-3 on the road. Their 54 points in 46 games matches their highest total since they had 62 points in 46 games in 1983-84.
The Isles have earned 31 of a possible 44 road points (.705). Their highest single-season road point percentage is .663, set in 1976-77 and matched in 1980-81. The Isles need to earn one point in their final two games to set a new franchise record for point percentage on the road.
The Isles ended their home season with at least a six-game point streak (5-0-1) for the first time since going unbeaten in the final 23 home games of the 1981-82 season.
The Isles have points in 11 straight (8-0-3) and are 11-1-3 in their last 15 games. It’s their longest point streak since they won 15 straight games in 1981-82.
The Isles have a point in six straight road games for the first time since going 5-0-1 from October 11- November 18, 2006, matching their longest point streak on the road in the Post-Cup era. The last time the Isles had a longer point streak on the road was from January 13-February 3, 1983 (5-0-2).
The Hurricanes are 19-24-3 overall, 9-14-0 at home and 10-10-3 on the road.
In the Nets
Evgeni Nabokov made 29 saves. He is 23-11-5 on the season. Nabokov now ranks second in the league in victories (Antti Niemi - 24).
Dan Ellis made 36 saves for Carolina; he is 6-8-1 on the season.
The Islanders were 0-for-2 while the Hurricanes were 0-for-0. The Islanders did not take a penalty in the game; it’s the second time this season (2/28 vs Toronto) that the Isles were penalty-free.
The Isles are 15-3-1 when they score at least one power play goal and 9-13-5 when they do not.
In (Almost) Every Game
The Isles have been tied or ahead at some point in the third period in 40-of-46 games this season (24-10-6).
Second to One
Jack Capuano is now second on the Islanders all-time list in both games coached (193) and wins (84).
Most wins by Islander coaches:
1.Al Arbour 740
2.Jack Capuano 84
3.Terry Simpson 81
4.Peter Laviolette 77
5.Ted Nolan 74
Most games coached (Islanders):
1.Al Arbour 1,500
2.Jack Capuano 193
3.Mike Milbury 191
4.Terry Simpson 187
5.Scott Gordon 181
They Said It
Frans Nielsen: "I've never felt better to lose a game. Garth Snow has been patient with us, even missing the playoffs. He believed we had the core in here to take us to the postseason. He went out and found some good pieces this summer, like (Lubomir) Visnovsky and those kind of guys to build onto it, so we've got it now. It's fun."
John Tavares, in 2009, the night he was drafted: "There's a great tradition there. I'm very thankful to be going there and I appreciate the opportunity to be a part of Long Island. It's going to be a great future for all of us." A future that now includes the playoffs.
They Tweeted It
@espnSteveLevy congrats to the islanders and their long suffering fans...enjoy the stanley cup playoffs from the good seats...soft spot in my heart for LI
@mattymarts17 Started from the bottom, now we're here #Isles #Playoffs
"The guys battled hard all year. We didn't start off great this season. They showed a lot of will and sacrifice and they deserve it. Most importantly, our fans back home, they stuck with us. They haven't seen playoff hockey in a while. They're very passionate, so that's great."
As Tavares Goes…
The Isles are 1-0-0 when Tavares has four points, 2-0-1 when he has three points, 7-2-0 when he has two points, 10-4-1 when he has one point, and 4-10-4 when Tavares is pointless.
What a Pair!
John Tavares and Matt Moulson have combined for 42 goals this season. Moulson has assisted on 20 Tavares goals this season after assisting on 12 of his 31 goals last season. Tavares has earned an assist on 10 Moulson goals this season. In five of the last six games that Moulson has scored a goal, Tavares has scored also.
Head of the Class
John Tavares has 248 career points; he is 59 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.
118 NHL Goals
Moulson has 118 career goals (112 as an Islander). While 262 players were selected before the Penguins chose Moulson in the 2003 NHL Entry Draft, only 16 have more goals.
Leading Ice Men
Travis Hamonic played 25:33 to lead the Isles. Justin Faulk led Carolina with 23:15.
In the Circle
The Islanders won 35-of-54 draws. Frans Nielsen won 9-of-10 to lead the Isles. John Tavares won 15-of-24; he has won 88-of-140 (63%) over the last eight games.
The Islanders were out-hit 34-22. Matt Martin had five hits, and leads the NHL with 223 on the season. There were no fights, leaving the season total at 17 fighting majors.
Giving Up the Body
The Isles were credited with 14 blocked shots. Brian Strait led the Islanders with five blocks.
The Islanders remain 10 games over .500 all-time (1371-1361-438 in 3170 games). The Isles are assured of finishing the season above .500 all-time, as they have been at the end of every season since 1977-78. It’s the first time since March 22, 2011 that the Isles are 10 games over .500 all-time.
April Wins Bring May Playoff Games
The Isles were 4-2-1 in January and 4-9-1 in February, and 8-5-1 in March. They are 8-0-3 in April.
John Tavares is the reigning Islanders’ ironman. Tavares has now played in 205 consecutive games.
Three other Islanders have streaks of at least 100 games. Frans Nielsen and Mark Streit have each played in 128 consecutive games while Kyle Okposo has played in 111 consecutive games.
Longest Consecutive Game Streaks, Post Cup Era
•Matt Moulson 10/3/2009- 4/4/2013 284
•Richard Park 10/5/2006 – 2/18/2009 221
•Bryan McCabe 10/7/1995-2/4/1998 220
•Bryan Trottier 3/7/1981- 1/12/1984 219
•Mariusz Czerkawski 12/23/1999 – 4/14/2002 215
•John Tavares 10/16/10 – CURRENT 205
Mark Streit now has the sixth-longest consecutive game streak of any defenseman in Islander history:
1.Denis Potvin 11/29/1975-1/17/1979 262
2.Bryan McCabe 10/7/1995-2/4/1998 220
3.Gerry Hart 3/1/1975-11/22/1977 198
4.Janne Niinimaa 3/13/2004-1/7/2006 136
5.Ken Morrow 3/1/1980-12/29/1981 134
6.Mark Streit 10/8/2011-CURRENT 128
7.Travis Hamonic 11/24/2010 – 2/4/2012 113
8.Jean Potvin 10/23/1975-1/2/1977 110
9.Kenny Jonsson 12/26/1996-2/4/1998 104
Hamonic, McCabe and Morrow's streaks came at the start of their NHL careers. Both Niinimaa's streak and McCabe's streak encompassed their entire Islander careers.
Matt Carkner, Eric Boulton, Radek Martinek, Anders Lee, Marty Reasoner, Joe Finley and David Ullstrom were scratched.
The Isles have scored 96 goals in their 24 wins (4.00 per game) and 37 goals in their other 22 games (0-16-6; 1.68 per game). In their 16 regulation losses, the Isles have scored 24 goals (1.50 per game).
Career Wins, Active Goalies
1. Martin Brodeur 668
2. Roberto Luongo 348
3. Evgeni Nabokov 335
4. Nikolai Khabibulin 331
17. Roberto Luongo 348
18. Evgeni Nabokov 335
18. Gump Worsley 335
20. Nikolai Khabibulin 331
Career Shutouts, Active Goalies
1. Martin Brodeur 121
2. Roberto Luongo 62
3. Evgeni Nabokov 55
4. Tomas Vokoun 51
18 Clint Benedict 57
19 Evgeni Nabokov 55
20 Bernie Parent 54
20 Ed Giacomin 54
Career Goals as an Islander
21Ray Ferraro 116
22Matt Moulson 112
23John Tavares 111
24Benoit Hogue 105
24Ed Westfall 105
Career Assists as an Islander
Career Games as an Islander (skaters)
39Randy Wood 381
40Frans Nielsen 365
50Eric Cairns 327
50Josh Bailey 327
52Alan Kerr 326
53Brad Dalgarno 321
54Kyle Okposo 317
55Ray Ferraro 316
55Steve Webb 316
55Richard Park 316
58Gerald Diduck 314
59Mikko Makela 307
60Gordon Lane 304
61Arron Asham 300
61Roman Hamrlik 300
63Matt Moulson 291
64John Tavares 289
65Gordon Dineen 287
66Mark Streit 284
67Jeffrey Norton 282
Career Points as an Islander
24John Tavares 248
35Matt Moulson 214
39Frans Nielsen 196
42Kyle Okposo 185
Season Series Stats
The Hurricanes win the season series three games to none (and six points to one). Carolina is the only Eastern Conference team that the Islanders did not beat this season.
31 years ago tonight (4-23-82): The Islanders eliminated the Rangers in six games, winning the final game of the series at Madison Square Garden by a 5-3 score. Butch Goring and Bob Bourne each scored twice for the Isles, but it was Dave Langevin’s goal with 6:08 to play that proved to be decisive.
Also on this date: (2002) After scoring only one goal in the first two games of the series, the Isles pound the Leafs 6-1 in Game 3 of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals. Mark Parrish scored twice for the Isles in a penalty-filled game.
All-time, the Isles are 1-0-0 in regular season play and 2-3 in the Stanley Cup Playoffs on this date.
On The Farm
Bridgeport finished their season with a 32-32-7-5 record.
THURSDAY, APRIL 25 ISLANDERS AT PHILADELPHIA (7:00PM)
[MSG+2 (pre-game show at 6:30), WRHU (88.7FM]
The Isles will be playing for playoff position as they visit the Flyers in Philadelphia’s home finale.
After dropping the first game of the season series 7-0 to Philadelphia the Isles have responded with consecutive wins and are 3-1-0 in their last four trips to Philly.
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.