Toronto 5, Isles 4 (OT)
Dion Phaneuf scored 1:11 into overtime as the Toronto Maple Leafs spoiled Kyle Okposo’s biggest night of the season, defeating the Islanders 5-4 before 9,222 at Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum. Nazem Kadri recorded his first career hat trick for the Leafs while Michael Grabner was stopped on a penalty shot in the first Isles game with no penalty minutes since 1980.
03:34NYIJ. Bailey (1) Snap - ASST: K. Okposo (5) AND A. MacDonald (3) 1 - 0 NYI
08:31TORN. Kadri (6) Wrist - ASST: M. Fraser (3) 1 - 1 TIE
06:22NYIL. Visnovsky (1) Slap - ASST: C. Cizikas (5) AND C. McDonald (3) 2 - 1 NYI
08:55TORN. Kadri (7) Wrist - ASST: M. Fraser (4) AND C. Franson (12) 2 - 2 TIE
10:25TORJ. van Riemsdyk (12) Wrist - ASST: D. Steckel (1) AND C. Orr (2) 3 - 2 TOR
14:12TORN. Kadri (8) Wrist - ASST: M. Kostka (7) AND C. Gunnarsson (5) 4 - 2 TOR
05:31NYIA. MacDonald (1) Slap - ASST: K. Okposo (6) AND M. Streit (7) 4 - 3 TOR
10:08NYIK. Okposo (2) Wrist - ASST: NONE 4 - 4 TIE
01:11TORD. Phaneuf (4) Slap - ASST: M. Grabovski (4) AND C. MacArthur (5) 5 - 4 TOR
The Penalty Shot
Grabner’s attempt was an NHL-leading third for the Islanders this season; John Tavares and David Ullstrom had the others. All of them have been at home, and all have been unsuccessful. The Isles have failed on 17 of their last 18 regular season home ice penalty shots, dating back to a goal by Tim Connolly on 3/21/00. Michael Grabner scored in last season’s finale for the only success in that span. (Shawn Bates connected in a 2002 playoff game; 16 of the 17 regular season failures have occurred since then).
It was the 54th penalty shot in Islander regular season history; they have scored only 14 times (26%). Four of those attempts have come against Toronto. Four different Islander shooters have faced the Leafs; all have been stopped, including Matt Martin against James Reimer in 2011.
Grabner ties the Islander club record for career penalty shot attempts with five; he has scored only once. Brad Isbister also had five penalty shot attempts.
League-wide, shooters are 3-for-15 this season.
The Skinny: The Isles have scored four goals in the first periods of their last three games after scoring only seven first-period goals in their first 18 games … The Isles are 0-7-1 when John Tavares is held without a point … Kadri is the first Leaf to record a hat trick against the Isles since Darryl Sittler (10-14-78 at Toronto) and the first to do so on Long Island since Paul Henderson did so 39 years ago to the day (2-28-74) … Okposo had a goal and two assists as he recorded his sixth career three-point game … The Isles got goals from two defensemen for the first time since February 13, 2011 in Buffalo when Milan Jurcina and Ty Wishart both scored … There were two video reviews, both on potential Islander goals, and both were denied … Each of the first three Islander goals were “first goals” of the season … James van Riemsdyk, acquired from the Flyers in the off-season now has 12 goals; he had only 11 in 43 games last season.
Home and Road
The Islanders are 8-11-2 overall, 2-8-1 at home and 6-3-1 on the road.
It’s only the 5th time in 40 seasons that the Isles have earned five or fewer points in the first 11 home games:
•1989-90 (1-8-2, 4 points)
•1972-73, 1995-96, 1999-2000 and 2012-13 (all 2-8-1, 5 points)
The Isles are 0-3-1 in their last four home games, and have allowed 20 goals in that span. It’s the most goals the Isles have allowed in a four-game home stretch since they also allowed 20 between October 13-27, 2008.
The Leafs are 13-9-0 overall, 4-5-0 at home and 9-4-0 on the road.
In the Nets
Evgeni Nabokov made 23 saves but falls to 8-7-2.
James Riemer made 23 saves for Toronto in his first game since being injured vs. Philadelphia on February 11th. He is now 7-3-0 on the season.
There were no power plays in an Islander game for the first time since April 7, 2001 at Boston, the final game of the 2000-01 season.
Neither team was charged with a penalty minute for the first time in an Islander game since January 26, 1980 vs. Hartford. The Isles also played a penalty-free game on February 4, 1973 in Buffalo.
The Isles are 7-2-1 when they score at least one power play goal and 1-9-1 when they do not.
The Isles earned their seventh point of the season in a game that they trailed by two goals (with previous wins at Toronto, at NY Rangers and at Montreal).
It was the first time that the Isles rallied from a two-goal third period deficit to earn a point since February 24, 2011 at Philadelphia. The Isles lost that game in overtime.
As Seen on MSG+
Most goals by a defenseman since 2005-06:
1.Shea Weber 102
2.Dion Phaneuf 101
3.Zdeno Chara 98
4.Lubomir Visnovsky 91
5.Nicklas Lidstrom 91
They Said It
Nazem Kadri: "Dion (Phaneuf) grabbed the (first career) hat trick puck for me so I'm really excited to have that. I have high expectations for myself so this is a proud moment for me."
They Tweeted It
@StapeNewsday #Isles get at least a point out of this wildness. 4-4 heading to OT. Nabokov was insanely good in the third.
“The line changes hurt us in the second, but we came back in the third"
Even at 5-on-5
Each team scored four goals in 5-on-5 play. The Isles have allowed an NHL-high 53 goals at 5-on-5.
As Tavares Goes…
The Isles are 1-0-0 when Tavares has four points, 1-0-1 when he has three points, 3-2-0 when he has two points, 3-2-0 when he has one point, and 0-7-1 when Tavares is pointless.
What a Pair!
John Tavares and Matt Moulson were held scoreless but have combined for an NHL-leading 23 goals among teammates.
Moulson has assisted on 10 Tavares goals this season after assisting on 12 of his 31 goals last season.
Head of the Class
John Tavares has 227 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.
Friends, Friends, Friends
Matt Moulson has ten goals this season; John Tavares has earned an assist on seven of them. Tavares has now been on ice for 39 consecutive Moulson goals, earning assists on 25 of them, dating back to a Moulson goal on November 26, 2011 against New Jersey. Since November 2010, Tavares has been on ice for 69 of 70 Moulson goals, earning 47 assists.
113 NHL Goals
Moulson has 113 career goals (107 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 two goals behind Nikolai Zherdev for 16th place.
Leading Ice Men
Travis Hamonic played 24:40 to lead the Isles. Dion Phaneuf led Toronto with 24:12.
In the Circle
The Islanders won 33 draws; the Leafs won 26. Frans Nielsen won 10-of-16 for the Isles; Mikhail Grabovski won 8-of-14 for Toronto.
The Islanders were out-hit 42-23; Matt Martin led the Isles with nine hits; he now leads the NHL with 93. Toronto has 653 hits, tops in the NHL. There were no fights, leaving the Isles’ season total at 10.
Giving Up the Body
The Isles were credited with 14 blocked shots. Travis Hamonic led the Isles with five.
The Islanders remain one game under .500 all-time (1355-1356-434 in 3145 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.
3 Usually Enough
The Isles are 8-1-2 when scoring at least three goals and 0-10-0 when scoring two or less. Dating back to last year, the Isles have lost 15 straight (0-15-0) and 21 of 22 (1-20-1) when scoring two or fewer goals.
Looking Forward to March
The Isles were 4-2-1 in January, outscoring their opponents 27-23. The Isles finish 4-9-1 in February and were outscored 50-33. The nine regulation losses in February are the most the club has suffered in February since they lost 11 in 1973.
Battling the Northeast
This was the sixth game of an eight-game stretch that the Islanders play seven Northeast opponents. The Isles are 2-2-1 against their first five Northeast opponents, with Ottawa and Montreal upcoming.
Nobody Beats the Viz
Lubomir Visnovsky has been on ice for 20 of the 30 Islander goals in his ten games with the team. Being on the ice when his team scores is nothing new for Visnovsky; he led the entire NHL in 2010-11 when he was on ice for 146 Anaheim goals (13 more than Henrik Sedin).
Here's a number that Howie Rose likes to refer to from time-to-time. Lubomir Visnovsky is the sixth player to score his first goal as an Islander this season, joining Brad Boyes, Keith Aucoin, Casey Cizikas, Colin McDonald and Thomas Hickey. 327 players in Islander history have scored a goal.
Lots of Home Cooking
This was the third game of a club record-tying seven-game home stand.
•October 7- October 28, 1972 (1-5-1 in the first seven games in club history)
•December 19, 2000- January 2, 2001 (2-5-0)
•November 21-December 4, 2001 (3-2-2)
•October 14- October 31, 2006 (4-1-2)
•February 15-March 1, 2007 (5-1-1)
•February 24-March 9, 2013 (0-2-1 with four games to play)
Matt Moulson, the Isles’ reigning ironman, has played in all 267 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 180 consecutive games, while Nielsen and Streit have each played in 103.
Longest Consecutive Game Streaks, Islanders History
1. Billy Harris 576
2. Bob Nystrom 301
3. Matt Moulson 267
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 10/7/95-2/4/98 220
3.Gerry Hart 3/1/75-11/22/77 198
4.Janne Niinimaa 3/13/2004-1/7/2006 136
5.Ken Morrow 3/1/1980-12/29/1981 134
6.Travis Hamonic 11/24/10 – 2/4/12 113
7.Jean Potvin 10/23/75-1/2/77 110
8.Kenny Jonsson 12/26/96-2/4/98 104
9.Mark Streit 10/8/11-CURRENT 103
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.
Eric Boulton and Joe Finley replaced David Ullstrom and Radek Martinek in the lineup. Keith Aucoin was also scratched. Matt Carkner and Brian Strait are on Injured Reserve. Jesse Joensuu remains suspended after suffering an injury in Europe.
The Isles have scored 36 goals in their 8 wins (4.50 per game) and 24 goals in their other 13 games (0-11-2; 1.85 per game). In their 11 regulation losses, the Isles have scored 16 goals (1.45 per game).
Career Wins, Active Goalies
1. Martin Brodeur 664
2. Roberto Luongo 344
3. Nikolai Khabibulin 330
4. Evgeni Nabokov 320
5. Miikka Kiprusoff 313
21. Sean Burke 324
22. Evgeni Nabokov 320
23. Miikka Kiprusoff 313
Career Shutouts, Active Goalies
1. Martin Brodeur 120
2. Roberto Luongo 62
3. Evgeni Nabokov 53
4. Tomas Vokoun 49
5. Nikolai Khabibulin 45
6. Miikka Kiprusoff 44
19 Bernie Parent 54
19 Ed Giacomin 54
21 Evgeni Nabokov 53
22 Rogie Vachon 51
22 Dave Kerr 51
22 Curtis Joseph 51
Career Goals as an Islander
21Ray Ferraro 116
22Matt Moulson 107
23Benoit Hogue 105
23Ed Westfall 105
25Anders Kallur 101
26 Trent Hunter 99
27John Tavares 97
28Mikko Makela 95
28David Volek 95
Career Assists as an Islander
Career Games as an Islander (skaters)
40Alexei Yashin 346
41Mark Parrish 345
42Frans Nielsen 340
43Marty McInnis 337
58Gordon Lane 304
59Josh Bailey 302
60Arron Asham 300
60Roman Hamrlik 300
62Kyle Okposo 292
63Gordon Dineen 287
64Jeffrey Norton 282
66Matt Moulson 267
67John Tavares 264
68Andre St. Laurent261
70Mark Streit 259
70Brad Lauer 259
72Benoit Hogue 258
Career Points as an Islander
30John Tavares 227
39Matt Moulson 193
42Frans Nielsen 177
47Kyle Okposo 169
Season Series Stats
The season series is even at one game each (the Isles have three points to Toronto’s two). The final meeting of the season will come on April 18 at Toronto.
20 years ago today (February 28, 1993): In a wild game at the Hartford Civic Center, the Islanders got an overtime goal from Pierre Turgeon for a 7-6 win over the Hartford Whalers. Pat Verbeek had a hat trick for Hartford.
All-time, the Isles are 9-7-3 on this date, including a 2-0-2 record in their last four games.
On The Farm
Bridgeport, 22-23-3-4 on the season, will play three games in three days this weekend. Bridgeport will travel to Hartford to face the Connecticut Whale on Friday and then host the Whale on Sunday afternoon. Bridgeport will also host Adirondack on Saturday.
SUNDAY, MARCH 3 OTTAWA AT ISLANDERS (3:00PM)
[MSG+ (pre-game show at 2:30), WRHU (88.7FM)]
The Islanders will be off for consecutive days for the first time since February 12-13 before they continue the seven-game home stand by entertaining the Ottawa Senators. The injury-ridden Senators are 5-0-1 in their last six games despite being without Craig Anderson, Eric Karlsson, Jason Spezza and Milan Michalek. Ottawa will play on Saturday afternoon in Philadelphia before heading to Long Island.
The Sens won the first meeting 3-1 in Ottawa as Anderson stopped 37 Islander shots. Ottawa has won four straight against the Isles, outscoring New York 19-4.
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.