Isles 5, Panthers 2
The fans shouted “We Want Playoffs” and the Isles responded with their first three-goal first period of the season, Radek Martinek and Michael Grabner scored 14 seconds apart in the second period and the Islanders went on to a 5-2 victory over the Florida Panthers before a near-sellout crowd of 15,922 at Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum. Grabner’s goal was his second of the game and 15th of the season (trailing only John Tavares - 24). The Islanders are 6-0-2 in their last eight, 9-1-2 in their last 12 and remain in seventh place in the East, one point behind sixth-place Ottawa and three points ahead of the eighth-place Rangers and ninth-place Winnipeg Jets.
08:01NYIM. Moulson (14) Deflected - ASST: M. Martin (7) AND T. Hickey (3) 1 - 0 NYI
13:59NYIPPG - M. Streit (6) Slap - ASST: K. Okposo (15) AND F. Nielsen (21) 2 - 0 NYI
16:47NYIPPG - M. Grabner (14) Wrist - ASST: A. MacDonald (7) AND E. Nabokov (4) 3 - 0 NYI
18:12FLAPPG - D. Kulikov (3) Wrist - ASST: T. Fleischmann (20) AND M. Goc (10) 3 - 1 NYI
03:19NYIR. Martinek (3) Slap - ASST: J. Joensuu (1) AND M. Streit (19) 4 - 1 NYI
03:33NYIM. Grabner (15) Backhand - ASST: NONE 5 - 1 NYI
07:44FLAM. Goc (6) Wrist - ASST: T. Kopecky (12) AND T. Fleischmann (21) 5 - 2 NYI
The Isles are 9-1-2 in the last 12 and are six games over .500 for the first time since the end of the 2006-07 season (40-30-12) … The Isles have outscored their opponents 13-4 in the third period over the last 12 games …Two of Radek Martinek’s goals this season have come against the Panthers; he has five career goals against Florida and 20 against the rest of the NHL …The Isles got two goals from defensemen and now have 19 on the season, matching last season’s 82-game total … The Isles did not allow a shorthanded goal at home this season … Mark Streit’s assist was his 137th as an Islander, breaking a tie with John Tavares for the club lead among active players …The Isles have now scored 121 goals and allowed 123 … The Panthers have been outscored 102-60 over the first two periods this season … The Isles are 7-1-0 when they score at least two power play goals and are 7-0-0 when they score at least five goals.
Thank You Fans!
A near-capacity crowd was in attendance for Fan Appreciation Night. A moment of silence for the victims in Boston was held before the game; a spontaneous U-S-A chant erupted after the moment of silence.
The Isles are 23-11-6 in home finales and have won two straight finales for the first time since 1997-1998. The Isles are 2-0-2 in their last four home finales and are now 2-0-1 in home finales against Florida.
First Time in a Long Time
The Isles have 20 points (9-1-2) in the last 12 games for the first time since they had 20 points in several overlapping 12-game stretches early in the 2001-02 season. They have not had more than 20 points in any 12-game stretch since they won 14-of-15 games in the 1989-90 season, recording 22 points in several overlapping 12-game stretches.
First Time in a Long Time II (and Second Time EVER)
The Isles tied a club record tonight. They have allowed two goals or fewer in nine straight games for the second time in club history. They also did this from 10/17/01 to 11/6/01.
First Time Ever (As Seen on MSG+)
Entering play tonight, Evgeni Nabokov was the first goalie in club history to allow 14 goals or fewer in a 10-start span during a single season.
He also matched his own club record by allowing just 16 goals over 11 starts.
•Evgeni Nabokov 03/24/2013 04/16/2003 16
•Evgeni Nabokov 01/10/2012 02/11/2012 16
•Evgeni Nabokov 01/14/2012 02/14/2012 17
•Evgeni Nabokov 03/22/2013 04/13/2013 17
•Garth Snow 01/24/2003 02/21/2003 17
•Chico Resch 12/02/1975 01/17/1976 17
(Thanks, Elias Sports Bureau)
•3 Washington (SE Leader) 43 games 24-17-2 50 points (21 ROW) Next game: Thursday at Ottawa
•5. Toronto 43 games 24-14-5 53 points (24 ROW) Next game: Thursday vs. Isles
•6 Ottawa 42 games 22-14-6 48 points (18 ROW) Next game: Thursday vs. Washington
•7 NY Islanders 43 games 22-16-5 49 points (19 ROW) Next game: Thursday at Toronto
•8 NY Rangers 42 games 21-17-4 46 points (17 ROW) Next game: Thursday vs. Florida
•9 Winnipeg 43 games 22-19-2 46 points (20 ROW) Next game: Thursday vs. Carolina
•10 Buffalo 43 games 17-19-6 42 points (13 ROW) Next game: Wednesday at Boston
•11 Philadelphia 43 games 19-21-3 41 points (18 ROW) Next game: Thursday vs. New Jersey
•12 New Jersey 42 games 15-17-10 40 points (13 ROW) Next game: Thursday at Philadelphia
Isn’t it Magic?
The Islanders’ magic number for clinching a playoff spot is eight. Of the teams currently not in a playoff spot, Winnipeg can reach the highest total (56 points).
The Isles have allowed 28 or fewer shots in 13 of the last 15 games.
Home and Road
The Islanders are 22-16-5 overall, 10-11-3 at home and 12-5-2 on the road. Their 49 points in 43 games matches their highest total since they had 51 points in 43 games in 1984-85 and guarantees the Islanders a winning record for the first time since their last playoff appearance in 2006-07.
Despite the win, the Isles finish one point below .500 at home for the third straight season. The Isles are 5-0-1 in their last six games at home. It’s the first time since the 2010-11 season that the Isles have earned a point in six straight at home.
The Isles end a home season with at least a six-game point streak for the first time since going unbeaten in the final 23 home games of the 1981-82 season.
The Isles have points in eight straight (6-0-2) and are 9-1-2 in their last 12 games. It’s the first time since January 18 - February 7, 2007 that the Isles have earned points in eight straight games (5-0-3) and matches their longest point streak since they opened the 2001-02 season with a 9-0-1-1 record.
The Panthers are 13-23-6 overall, 7-10-5 at home and 6-13-1 on the road.
In the Nets
Evgeni Nabokov made 26 saves to improve to 21-11-5 on the season and lowers his goals against average to 2.49. Nabokov is tied for third in the league in victories (pending San Jose’s late game).
Jacob Markstrom made 13 saves for the Panthers and falls to 6-11-1 on the season. Markstrom was replaced by Scott Clemmensen after the fifth goal; Clemmensen stopped all 13 shots he faced in relief.
The Islanders were 2-for-3 while the Panthers were 1-for-5.
It’s the first time in eight games that the Isles had more than two power plays.
The Isles have killed 19-of-21 penalties over the last nine games.
The Isles are 14-3-1 when they score at least one power play goal and 7-14-4 when they do not.
In (Almost) Every Game
The Isles have been tied or ahead at some point in the third period in 37-of-43 games this season (22-10-5).
Jack Capuano now has 82 career wins as he becomes the second winningest coach in Islander history, passing Terry Simpson for second place. He will move into second place in games coached on Saturday.
Most wins by Islander coaches:
1.Al Arbour 740
2.Jack Capuano 82
3.Terry Simpson 81
4.Peter Laviolette 77
5.Ted Nolan 74
Most games coached (Islanders):
1.Al Arbour 1,500
2.Mike Milbury 191
3.Jack Capuano 190
4.Terry Simpson 187
5.Scott Gordon 181
They Said It
Michael Grabner on the fans: "It gives you goose bumps. It gets you motivated and it makes you want to keep playing for another couple of months."
They Tweeted It
@MMoulson Great support in the old barn #thankyoufans..here we come road trip
“I thought Nabby played a great game tonight. We tried to establish our forecheck and sticks, and be resilient on pucks tonight. I thought we did that, but there were times where we didn't. We found a way and that's the important thing.”
As Tavares Goes…
The Isles are 1-0-0 when Tavares has four points, 1-0-1 when he has three points, 7-2-0 when he has two points, 10-4-0 when he has one point, and 3-10-4 when Tavares is pointless.
What a Pair!
John Tavares and Matt Moulson have combined for 38 goals this season. Moulson has assisted on 18 Tavares goals this season after assisting on 12 of his 31 goals last season. Tavares has earned an assist on nine Moulson goals this season.
Head of the Class
John Tavares has 244 career points; he is 55 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.
117 NHL Goals
Moulson has 117 career goals (111 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
Mark Streit played 24:40 to lead the Isles. Brian Campbell led Florida with 26:11.
In the Circle
The Islanders won 29-of-63 draws. John Tavares won 13-of-21 for the Isles; he has won 44-of-68 over the last five games.
The Islanders were out-hit 22-15. Mark Streit led the Isles with three hits. Matt Martin, who won the Nystrom Award before the game added one hit, increasing his NHL-leading total to 213. There were no fights, leaving the season total at 15.
Giving Up the Body
The Isles were credited with 21 blocked shots. Three Islanders each had three blocks. Andrew MacDonald had two. MacDonald now leads the NHL with 114 blocks.
The Islanders are eight games over .500 all-time (1369-1361-437 in 3167 games). The Isles are assured of finishing the season with an all-time mark above .500, as they have been at the end of every season since 1977-78.
April Wins Bring May Playoff Games
The Isles were 4-2-1 in January, 4-9-1 in February and 8-5-1 in March. They are 6-0-2 in April.
John Tavares is the reigning Islanders’ ironman. Tavares has now played in 202 consecutive games.
Three other Islanders have streaks of at least 100 games. Frans Nielsen and Mark Streit have each played in 125 consecutive games while Kyle Okposo has played in 108 consecutive games. In all, eight Islanders have played every game this season, including Travis Hamonic (65 consecutive games), Matt Martin (56 consecutive games), Andrew MacDonald (43 consecutive games) and Brad Boyes (43 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 202
Mark Streit 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 125
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.
Radek Martinek replaced Matt Carkner in the lineup. Anders Lee, Marty Reasoner and Eric Boulton were scratched as were Joe Finley and Brian Strait, who were activated from Injured Reserve.
The Isles have scored 87 goals in their 22 wins (3.94 per game) and 34 goals in their other 21 games (0-16-5; 1.62 per game). In their 16 regulation losses, the Isles have scored 24 goals (1.50 per game).
Career Wins, Active Goalies
1. Martin Brodeur 666
2. Roberto Luongo 348
3. Evgeni Nabokov 333
4. Nikolai Khabibulin 331
18. Gump Worsley 335
19. Evgeni Nabokov 333
20. Nikolai Khabibulin 331
Career Shutouts, Active Goalies
1. Martin Brodeur 120
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 111
23John Tavares 108
24Benoit Hogue 105
24Ed Westfall 105
Career Assists as an Islander
Career Games as an Islander (skaters)
39Randy Wood 381
40Frans Nielsen 362
50Eric Cairns 327
51Alan Kerr 326
52Josh Bailey 324
53Brad Dalgarno 321
54Ray Ferraro 316
54Steve Webb 316
54Richard Park 316
57Kyle Okposo 314
57Gerald Diduck 314
59Mikko Makela 307
60Gordon Lane 304
61Arron Asham 300
61Roman Hamrlik 300
63Matt Moulson 288
64Gordon Dineen 287
65John Tavares 286
66Jeffrey Norton 282
67Mark Streit 281
Career Points as an Islander
24John Tavares 244
36Matt Moulson 210
40Frans Nielsen 192
43Kyle Okposo 180
Season Series Stats
The Islanders sweep the season series three games to none, winning all three games in regulation. It’s the first perfect season for the Isles against the Panthers.
The Isles have won four straight over Florida, matching the club record.
33 years ago tonight (4-16-80): Clark Gillies scored 1:02 into overtime to give the Islanders a 2-1 win over Boston in the opening game of their second round playoff series. It remains to this day the second shortest overtime in Isles playoff history.
Also on this date: (1993) Pierre Turgeon records a hat trick in the season finale as the Isles beat New Jersey 8-4; (1979) Mike Bossy recorded his first playoff hat trick in a 6-2 win over Chicago; (1984, 1985, 1987) The Isles won playoff games against Washington in each year. The 1985 win completed a comeback from a 2-0 series deficit to win the best-of-5, while a Game 6 win in 1987 set the stage for the Easter Epic two days later.
All-time, the Isles are 3-1-0 in regular season play and 7-3 in the Stanley Cup Playoffs on this date.
On The Farm
Bridgeport is 31-30-7-5 on the season after a 5-4 overtime loss to Portland. The Sound Tigers are five points out of a playoff spot with only three games to play. Bridgeport visits Portland on Friday before concluding the regular season with a pair of home games over the weekend.
THURSDAY, APRIL 18 ISLANDERS AT TORONTO (7:30PM)
[MSG+2 (pre-game show at 7:00), WRHU (88.7FM]
The Islanders begin the regular season-ending five-game road trip in Toronto on Tuesday. The Isles won an early season game in Toronto before dropping an overtime game at the Coliseum on February 28 on a Dion Phaneuf goal.
The Isles will be looking for their third straight win in Toronto for the first time since 12/11/91-2/3/93. They are 2-0-2 in their last four games overall vs. the Leafs and will be looking for their first five-game point streak vs. Toronto since 2001-2003.
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.