Phil Kessel scored twice and added an assist as the Toronto Maple Leafs scored four goals in an 8:49 span of the second period as they rallied for a 5-2 win over the Islanders before a crowd of 11,408 at the Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum. The loss was the Isles’ second straight after opening the season with four straight wins.
The Scoring: 1ST PERIOD 02:48 NYI Nick Leddy (3) ASST: Ryan Strome (6), Josh Bailey (1) 1 - 0 NYI 08:44 TOR James van Riemsdyk (3) ASST: Phil Kessel (4) 1 - 1 Tie 15:02 NYI PPG - John Tavares (3) ASST: Frans Nielsen (4), Kyle Okposo (6) 2 - 1 NYI
2ND PERIOD 09:04 TOR Phil Kessel (3) ASST: Leo Komarov (5), Mike Santorelli (2) 2 - 2 Tie 11:11 TOR Roman Polak (1) ASST: Daniel Winnik (2), Mike Santorelli (3) 3 - 2 TOR 16:21 TOR David Clarkson (2) ASST: Peter Holland (1), Stephane Robidas (2) 4 - 2 TOR 17:53 TOR Phil Kessel (4) ASST: James van Riemsdyk (2), Tyler Bozak (4) 5 - 2 TOR
3RD PERIOD NONE
The Skinny: The Isles have seven goals from their defense in the first six games; they had only 23 goals from the defense all last season. Nick Leddy has three of them; his career high is seven goals … John Tavares’ first period goal made him the first player in the NHL to reach 10 points this season (Tyler Seguin tied him for the NHL scoring lead later in the evening)… Kyle Okposo and Ryan Strome each recorded their sixth assist of the season. All 6 of Strome’s assists have come at even strength and he leads the NHL in that category. Strome had 11 assists in 37 NHL games last season… The Isles allowed five 5-on-5 goals after allowing only seven in their first five games combined… Kessel in now 16-13-29 in 30 career games against the Isles.
The Injury Thomas Hickey left the game at the 3:31 mark of the third period after being cut by a skate. He did not return.
The Shots: Isles 12-17-7=36 Penguins 10-13-5=28
Home and Road The Islanders are 4-2-0 overall, 2-1-0 at home and 2-1-0 on the road.
Toronto is 3-3-1 overall; 1-3-0 at home and 2-0-1 on the road.
By Division The Isles are 3-1-0 in Division games and are 1-1-0 in games against other divisions. They are 0-1-0 vs. the Atlantic Division, 0-0-0 vs. Central Division, and 1-0-0 vs. the Pacific Division.
The Isles won only three of their first 17 division games (3-11-3) last season.
In the Nets Jaroslav Halak made 18 saves over the first two periods but falls to 3-2-0 on the season. He is now 7-3-3 in his career against Toronto. Chad Johnson stopped all five shots he faced in the third period.
Jonathan Bernier made 34 saves for Toronto as he improves to 1-2-1 on the season.
Power Plays The Islanders were 1-6 on the power play while Toronto was 0-4.
The Isles have now allowed 7 power play goals on 21 times short (66.7% penalty killing efficiency). After converting on 6 of 14 power play attempts in their four straight wins, the power play is 1 for 13 in the two losses.
The Isles are 4-1-0 when they score at least one power play goal and 0-1-0 when they do not. The Isles are 3-1-0 when they allow at least one power play goal and 1-1-0 when they do not.
Three is a Magic Number The Isles are 4-0-0 when they score at least three goals (including shootout winners) and are 0-2-0 when they do not.
First Goal The Isles are 2-2-0 when they score first and are 2-0-0 when they allow the opening goal.
Second to The One Jack Capuano is the 2nd winningest coach in Islander history. Capuano is 122-122-39 behind the Islander bench
Most games coached (Islanders): 1. Al Arbour 1,500 2. Jack Capuano 283 3. Mike Milbury 191 4. Terry Simpson 187 5. Scott Gordon 181
Most wins by Islander coaches: 1. Al Arbour 740 2. Jack Capuano 122 3. Terry Simpson 81 4. Peter Laviolette 77 5. Ted Nolan 74
They Said It John Tavares: “We were really easy to play against in the second period…. We need to improve our tenaciousness.”
Travis Hamonic: “Not good enough. We have a new standard in this dressing room. We’ve had our fair share of that in the past and we have to make it our mission not to let it happen again.”
They Tweeted It @StapeNewsday Asked someone how many stitches Thomas Hickey needed to close skate cut under mouth. "Too many to count." @MikeyThaDon6 Has there been a better D pair than Nick Leddy and Johnny Boychuk to start the season? I think not #Islanders @Harry4naris strome with 6 even strength assists to start the season is cool #isles
The Coach “I thought some guys played a little soft, and I heard Johnny on the bench talking about that a little bit with the team…. Some guys, especially the younger guys have to learn what it takes to win in this league.”
Back-to-Backs The Isles are 1-0-0 in the front-end and 1-0-0 on the back end of back-to-backs this season.
The next set of back-to-backs is not until November 5th (at Anaheim) and November 6th (at Los Angeles).
Leading Ice Men Travis Hamonic led the Isles with 22:33 of ice-time while Roman Polak led Toronto with 22:46.
Isles record by ice-time leaders: Johnny Boychuk (2-1-0), Travis Hamonic (1-1-0) and John Tavares (1-0-0).
John Tavares led the Isles forwards with 19:58 of ice-time. Isles record by Forward ice-time leaders: John Tavares (2-2-0), Brock Nelson (1-0-0), and Casey Cizikas (1-0-0).
In the Circle The Islanders won 24 of 61 draws (39%). No Islander who took more than two face-offs won as many as he lost; Peter Holland and Mike Santorelli each won 6 of 9 for Toronto.
Heavy Hitters The Isles were out-hit 24-23. Matt Martin led the Isles with five hits. Roman Polak had five hits for Toronto.
There were no fights, leaving the season total at two: Martin (1), Hamonic (1).
Giving Up the Body The Isles were credited with 12 blocked shots; Travis Hamonic and Calvin deHaan led the Isles with three each.
For the Corsi Crowd Nikolay Kulemin (+8) led the Isles in even-strength Corsi, which measures shots attempted for and against (including blocks). Kulemin and Brock Nelson also had a team-leading 67% of Corsi For events.
Head of the Class Islander Captain John Tavares has 325 career points; he is 60 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 eight games over all-time NHL .500 (1409-1401-450 in 3,260 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 Thomas Hickey are the Islanders’ reigning ironmen. Leddy has played 258 consecutive regular season games, while Hickey has played 89 consecutive regular season Islander games.
Missing Men Lubomir Visnovsky, Michael Grabner, and Matt Carkner are all out on injured reserve. Mikhail Grabovski was also out injured. Eric Boulton and Matt Donovan were scratched for the fifth straight game.
The Isles have lost 23 games this season due to injury.
All-time Islander Leader Board: John Tavares has: • 139 goals (16th all-time, 6 behind Mariusz Czerkawski and 8 behind Pierre Turgeon) • 186 assists (16th all-time, 7 behind Pierre Turgeon and 63 behind Tomas Jonsson) • 325 points (17th all-time, 6 behind Ziggy Palffy, 8 behind Tomas Jonsson and 15 behind Pierre Turgeon • 356 games played (43rd among Islander skaters all-time, 25 behind Randy Wood)
Frans Nielsen has: • 85 goals (36th all-time, 2 behind Butch Goring and 7 behind Travis Green) • 173 assists (19th all-time, 2 behind Kenny Jonsson and 8 behind Ed Westfall) • 258 points (tied -23rd all-time with Jason Blake & Steve Thomas and 4 behind Kyle Okposo) • 453 games played (29th among Islander skaters all-time and 7 behind Trent Hunter)
Kyle Okposo has: • 101 goals (tied-26th all-time with Anders Kallur and 4 behind Ed Westfall & Benoit Hogue) • 161 assists (25th all-time, 2 behind Ziggy Palffy, 5 behind Jeff Norton and 6 behind Jean Potvin) • 262 points (22nd all-time, 26 behind Ed Westfall) • 396 games played (38th among Islander skaters all-time, and 1 behind David Volek)
Michael Grabner has: • 82 goals (38th all-time, 2 behind Tomas Jonsson, 3 behind Frans Nielsen and 5 behind Butch Goring)
Josh Bailey has: • 412 games played (34th among Islander skaters all-time and 11 behind Dave Langevin)
Season Series Stats The Leafs lead the season series 1 game to 0 (and 2 points to 0).
Despite the loss, the Isles are 5-2-1 in their last eight games with Toronto. The teams will next meet February 12th at the Coliseum, before meeting on March 9th in Toronto.
It Happened at the Coliseum: 8 years ago tonight (2006): Tom Poti scored a power play goal just 23 seconds into overtime as the Isles rallied from a 3-2 deficit (after giving away a 2-0 lead) for a 4-3 win over the Stanley Cup Champion Carolina Hurricanes on Kids Opening Night at the Coliseum.
Alexei Yashin assisted on all four Islander goals; it was the 14th (and final) 4+ point game of his career. Poti also drew an assist on Mike Sillinger’s goal with 3:10 to play that forced overtime.
It was the 5th career overtime goal for Poti, and the only one that he would score as an Islander.
Also on this date: (1972) In the first-ever regular season meeting between the teams, the Rangers beat the Isles 2-1 in front of the first-ever Coliseum sellout. Vic Hadfield and Bobby Rousseau sandwiched goals around Craig Cameron’s tally for the Isles. Billy Smith fought with the Rangers’ Rod Gilbert.
Also on this date (2009) John Tavares is a winner for the first time in his NHL career as the Isles snapped a season-opener 6-game winless streak (0-3-3) with a 4-3 shootout win over Carolina. The Canes had scored twice in 62 seconds in the third period to force the shootout.
All-time, the Isles have played eleven October 21st games at the Coliseum and have compiled a 5-5-1 record on this date at 1255 Hempstead Turnpike in Uniondale.
On The Farm The Sound Tigers are 3-2-0 after an overtime win over Springfield on Sunday afternoon. Harry Zolnierczyk tied the score with a power play goal with 13 seconds to play; Anders Lee scored the winner just 41 seconds into overtime. Zolnierczyk leads the Sound Tigers in scoring with six points.
The Sound Tigers will play a pair of games this weekend in St. John’s against the Ice Caps.
Up Next THURSDAY, OCTOBER 23rd—ISLANDERS AT BOSTON 7:00PM [MSG+ (Islanders pre-game at 6:30pm), 88.7 WRHU-FM, 103.9 WRCN]
The Islanders and Bruins will meet for the first time this season on Thursday night in Boston.
The Isles are 3-1-0 in their last four trips to Boston and are also 3-1-0 in their last four games overall with Boston.
In their only trip to Boston last season (New Year’s Eve), the Isles scored four power play goals as they rallied from a 3-1 deficit for a 5-3 victory. Frans Nielsen and John Tavares each scored twice for the Isles.
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.