Isles 4, Panthers 3
Casey Cizikas scored with only 7:05 to play as the Islanders broke a 3-3 tie to defeat the Florida Panthers 4-3 before a crowd of 17,627 at BB&T Center. The Isles had built a 3-0 lead heading to the third before Florida tallied three times in 103 seconds to tie the game, setting the stage for Cizikas’ winning goal. Evgeni Nabokov made 27 saves for his 325th career win as the Isles went over .500 (13-12-3). The Isles are 5-1-2 in their last eight games.
15:26NYIK. Okposo (3) Slap - ASST: F. Nielsen (11) AND A. MacDonald (6) 1 - 0 NYI
17:59NYIR. Martinek (2) Snap - ASST: M. Streit (11) AND M. Reasoner (5) 2 - 0 NYI
00:33NYIB. Boyes (8) Wrist - ASST: J. Tavares (14) AND M. Moulson (18) 3 - 0 NYI
05:09FLAT. Brennan (2) Wrist - ASST: M. Santorelli (1) AND J. Huberdeau (6) 3 - 1 NYI
05:43FLAM. Goc (3) Wrist - ASST: T. Fleischmann (13) AND T. Kopecky (7) 3 - 2 NYI
06:52FLAM. Santorelli (2) Tip-In - ASST: J. Skille (7) AND B. Campbell (11) 3 - 3 TIE
12:55NYIC. Cizikas (4) Wrist - ASST: C. McDonald (7) AND K. Aucoin (3) 4 - 3 NYI
The Isles are 9-2-3 when scoring first and 8-1-1 when leading after two periods … Evgeni Nabokov’s 325th career win passes Sean Burke for 21st place all-time … Nabokov has allowed three goals or fewer in six of his last seven starts … Matt Moulson has an assist in four straight games; he leads the Isles with 18 assists and now has 199 career points in an Islander uniform … Brad Boyes now has nine points in the last seven games (4-5-9); he also has his first three-game goal scoring streak since 11/13-11/19/2010 (four games) … The Isles defense has combined for 15 goals this season … Florida has lost six straight (0-5-1) and trailed 2-0 in the first period of all six games … The Isles have won three straight over Southeast opponents and are 4-2-1 vs. the Southeast this season, including 2-0-1 on the road.
Home and Road
The Islanders are 13-12-3 overall, 5-8-2 at home and 8-4-1 on the road. With the win, the Isles move ahead of the Rangers into 9th place in the East. The Isles lead the Rangers by one point and they are now two points behind 8th place Carolina.
The Panthers are 7-16-6 overall, 4-8-5 at home and 3-8-1 on the road.
Sunshine State Sweep
The Isles swept their Florida trip in March, 2011, but their win over the Panthers was in a shootout. This was their first back-to-back regulation wins in Florida since opening the 2001-02 season with back-to-back wins in Peter Laviolette’s first two games as Islander coach.
Over .500, Finally
The Isles move over .500 in the second-half of an NHL season for the first time since the 2009-10 campaign when they were 23-22-8. The Isles entered five games in the second half of last season with a .500 record as well as this past Sunday’s game in Pittsburgh but lost them all.
The Isles have 17 points in their first 13 road games, matching their most in the last 34 seasons.
Most points in first 13 road games (all time):
•19 in 1976-77 (9-3-1)
•18 in 1978-79 (8-3-2)
•17 in 1980-81 (8-4-1)
•17 in 1983-84 (8-4-1)
•17 in 2001-02 (8-4-1)
•17 in 2012-13 (8-4-1)
In the Nets
Evgeni Nabokov made 27 saves for his 325th career win as he improves to 13-8-2 on the season.
Scott Clemmenson made 21 saves for the Panthers as he falls to 2-5-2 on the season.
The Islanders did not have a power play while the Panthers were 0-for-1. It’s the third time in the last eight games and the seventh time in the last two seasons that the Isles have not had a power play.
The Isles have 12 PP goals in their last 13 games (with all 12 goals coming in five games).
The Isles are 10-2-1 when they score at least one power play goal and 3-10-2 when they do not.
The Isles are 11-for-35 on the road power play this season (NHL-leading 31.4%).
In (Almost) Every Game
The Isles have been tied or ahead in the third period in 22-of-28 games this season (13-6-3).
They Said It
New American Citizen Ken Daneyko: “I think the Islanders…ten feet from the goal line…are one of the best teams in the league finishing plays. There are a lot of good things going on on Long Island.”
They Tweeted It
@StapeNewsday: Small tidbit from #Isles room postgame: No music, serious faces. They know this wasn't one to celebrate over. Sign of maturity.
On the Cizikas Line: “That line was good...they grinded it out down low…they got us a big goal.”
As Tavares Goes…
The Isles are 1-0-0 when Tavares has four points, 1-0-1 when he has three points, 5-2-0 when he has two points, 5-2-0 when he has one point, and 1-8-2 when Tavares is pointless.
What a Pair!
John Tavares and Matt Moulson have combined for 28 goals this season. Moulson has assisted on 12 Tavares goals this season after assisting on 12 of his 31 goals last season. Tavares has earned an assist on seven Moulson goals this season. Since November 2011, Tavares has been on ice for 39 of Moulson’s last 40 goals, earning 25 assists; since November 2010, he has earned 47 assists on Moulson’s last 71 goals, while being on ice for 69 of them.
Head of the Class
John Tavares has 233 career points; he is 56 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.
114 NHL Goals
Moulson has 114 career goals (108 as an Islander). While 262 players were selected before the Penguins chose Moulson in the 2003 NHL Entry Draft, only 17 have more goals. Moulson is one goal behind Nikolai Zherdev for 16th place.
Leading Ice Men
Andrew MacDonald played 23:02 to lead the Isles. Brian Campbell led the Panthers with 27:35.
In the Circle
The Islanders won 27-of-51 draws. Marty Reasoner won 8-of-13 for the Isles.
The Islanders out-hit Florida 40-26. Matt Martin led the Isles with eight hits, raising his season total to an NHL-leading 138. Eric Boulton fought George Parros in the first period, raising the Isles’ season total to 11.
Giving Up the Body
The Isles were credited with 17 blocked shots. Andrew MacDonald led the Isles with four blocked shots.
The Islanders are now three games over .500 all-time (1360-1357-435 in 3152 games). The Isles have been one game below .500 twice last season and four times this season. Prior to that, they had not been below .500 since they were 177-178-83 before their victory on January 16, 1978.
March to Victory
The Isles were 4-2-1 in January and 4-9-1 in February. The Isles are 5-1-1 in March.
Matt Moulson, the Isles’ reigning ironman, has played in all 274 games since joining the team. Moulson’s streak is the longest for an Islander in the Post-Cup era. Billy Harris played in the first 576 games in Islander history; that figure still stands as the club record.
Three other Islanders (Frans Nielsen, John Tavares and Mark Streit) also played in every game last season. Tavares extended his streak to 187 consecutive games, while Nielsen and Streit have each played in 110.
Longest Consecutive Game Streaks, Islander History
1. Billy Harris 576
2. Bob Nystrom 301
3. Matt Moulson 274
4. Denis Potvin 262
Mark Streit is the ninth Islander defenseman to play at least 100 consecutive games:
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.Travis Hamonic 11/24/2010 – 2/4/2012 113
7.Mark Streit 10/8/2011-CURRENT 110
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.
Joe Finley was scratched. David Ullstrom, Michael Grabner, Matt Carkner and Brian Strait are on Injured Reserve. Jesse Joensuu is skating with the team but has not yet been added to the active roster.
The Isles have scored 55 goals in their 13 wins (4.23 per game) and 26 goals in their other 15 games (0-12-3; 1.73 per game). In their 12 regulation losses, the Isles have scored 17 goals (1.42 per game).
Career Wins, Active Goalies
1. Martin Brodeur 664
2. Roberto Luongo 346
3. Nikolai Khabibulin 330
4. Evgeni Nabokov 325
5. Miikka Kiprusoff 316
19. Nikolai Khabibulin 330
19. Harry Lumley 330
21. Evgeni Nabokov 325
22. Sean Burke 324
23. Miikka Kiprusoff 316
Career Shutouts, Active Goalies
1. Martin Brodeur 120
2. Roberto Luongo 62
3. Evgeni Nabokov 54
4. Tomas Vokoun 49
5. Nikolai Khabibulin 45
6. Miikka Kiprusoff 44
18 Clint Benedict 57
19 Evgeni Nabokov 54
19 Bernie Parent 54
19 Ed Giacomin 54
22 Rogie Vachon 51
22 Dave Kerr 51
22 Curtis Joseph 51
Career Goals as an Islander
21Ray Ferraro 116
22Matt Moulson 108
23Benoit Hogue 105
23Ed Westfall 105
25John Tavares 101
25Anders Kallur 101
27 Trent Hunter 99
Career Assists as an Islander
Career Games as an Islander (skaters)
39Frans Nielsen 347
41Alexei Yashin 346
56Gerald Diduck 314
57Josh Bailey 309
58Mikko Makela 307
59Gordon Lane 304
60Arron Asham 300
60Roman Hamrlik 300
62Kyle Okposo 299
63Gordon Dineen 287
64Jeffrey Norton 282
66Matt Moulson 274
67John Tavares 271
68Mark Streit 266
69Andre St. Laurent261
Career Points as an Islander
26John Tavares 232
36Matt Moulson 199
42Frans Nielsen 181
46Kyle Okposo 170
Season Series Stats
The Isles lead the season series one game to none (and two points to none). The teams will play again March 24 (5pm) and April 16 at the Coliseum.
The Isles own shootout wins in Sunrise in each of the last two March’s, but this was their first regulation win in South Florida since November 18, 2006 (Two shootout wins, 8 losses, and a shootout loss).
13 years ago tonight (March 16, 2000): In his first NHL start, Steve Valiquette makes 37 saves as the Islanders defeat Atlanta 4-2. Josh Green scored the winning goal for the Isles.
Also on this date: John Tavares’ five-point game in Vancouver earns him a share of the Isles’ rookie point record (2010), a Glenn Healy (1993) shutout at San Jose, and a Billy Smith shutout/Garry Howatt hat trick (1977) at Chicago.
All-time, the Isles are 8-10-1 on March 16, although they are 4-2-0 in their last six.
On The Farm
Bridgeport is 25-25-6-4 on the season after losing to Manchester 3-2 on Friday and being blanked 1-0 in overtime by Hershey on Saturday. The Sound Tigers are six points out of a playoff spot with 16 games to play. Bridgeport hosts Albany on Sunday afternoon at 3:00 p.m.
TUESDAY, MARCH 19 OTTAWA AT ISLANDERS (7:00PM)
[MSG+ (pre-game show at 6:30), WRHU (88.7FM)]
The Isles return home to begin a four-game (six day) home stand as they entertain Ottawa.
It’s the final meeting of the season between the teams, with each team owning a home-ice victory. The Isles’ victory, back on March 3, was clinched on John Tavares’ memorable shootout goal.
The Sens have owned the special teams in the first two meetings, stopping all nine Islander power plays, while going 2-for-8 on their own power play.
Ottawa may be in search of an NHL record on Tuesday; the Sens have played 11 consecutive one-goal games (5-2-4) and can tie an NHL record set by the 1997-98 Chicago Blackhawks when they host Winnipeg on Sunday.
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.