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The Skinny - Preds 3, Islanders 1

by Eric Hornick / New York Islanders

Game 43

Predators 3, Isles 1

Sergei Kostisyn and Matt Halischuk scored on Nashville’s first two shots and Pekka Rinne did the rest, stopping 36 shots as the Nashville Predators defeated the Islanders 3-1 in front of 10,755 at Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum. David Legwand's first period goal rounded off the scoring for the Preds.

The Scoring:
1st Period
02:17NSH Sergei Kostitsyn (11) - ASST: R. Ellis (3)
05:34NSH Matt Halischuk (10) - ASST: NONE
11:37NSH David Legwand (13) - ASST: M. Erat (20) AND C. Wilson (16)

2nd Period -NONE

3rd Period
16:02NYI John Tavares (16) - ASST: M. Moulson (19) AND K. Okposo (11)

The Skinny: 
The Islanders allowed a goal on the opponent’s first shot for the 9th time this season. John Tavares extended his point streak to a career-high nine games. Tavares has three goals and 13 assists in those nine games (including five multi-point games). Matt Moulson and Kyle Okposo earned assists on the tally, extending their streaks to four games.  Tavares’ goal was the Isles’ first in 121:14 against Nashville.

The Shots
The Predators had 12 of the game’s first 15 shots and outshot the Isles 12-6 in the opening period. The Isles rebounded to outshoot Nashville 19-10 in the second period and 12-10 in the third period. For the game, the Isles outshot the Preds 37-32.

Home and Road
The Islanders are 16-21-6 overall and are 10-11-3 at home.  The Isles are 4-2-0 in the last six on home ice after going 3-8-3 in their prior 14 at home. 
The Preds are 26-15-4 overall and 12-8-1 on the road.  The Preds have won five straight games for the second time this season and are 14-4-0 in their last 18 games.

In the Nets
Kevin Poulin made 29 saves, stopping 29 of the final 30 shots, but drops to 0-2-0 in the NHL this season. Following the game, Poulin was returned to Bridgeport.
Pekka Rinne made 36 saves for the Predators as he improves to 24-11-4.  He has allowed only four goals in three career games against the Islanders.

Power Plays
The Islanders were 0-3 on the power play; the Predators were 0-1.  The Isles, who entered the game 7th in the league with the extra man, are 9-32 on the power play over the last 11 games after going just 1-22 in the previous seven games.  The Isles are also 6-22 in the last eight games on the power play.

The Isles have killed 22-23 over the last ten games and 26-28 (92.9%) over the last 14 games.
The Isles had a chance to get back in the game in the second period but could not convert on a 5-on-3 advantage that lasted 1:10.  The Islanders and Calgary are the only two teams in the NHL without a 5-on-3 goal.

300 Club
Evgeni Nabokov has become the 26th goalie in NHL history with 300 career wins. Among current NHL goalies, only Martin Brodeur, Nikolai Khabibulin and Roberto Luongo have more career wins.  He is one win behind Mike Richter (301) on the all-time list. He one of five goalies who have won 300 goals, including at least one for the Isles: [Chris Osgood (401 -- 49 with Isles), John Vanbiesbrouck (374 -- 10 with Isles),  Roberto Luongo (325 -- 7 with Isles), Billy Smith (305 -- 304 with Isles)  and now Evgeni Nabokov (300 -- 7 with Isles)]

They Said It
Mark Streit: "You can't blame the goalie.  The guys in front of him just weren't ready to play the first 20 minutes."

They Tweeted It
@markpherrmann “Goal by Tavares with 3:59 left extends point streak to nine games. The guy is worth price of admission”

The Coach
“We mismanaged the puck. We made soft plays and they capitalized."

Leading Ice Men
Mark Streit led the Isles with 27:30; Kevin Klein led Nashville with 23:28.

In the Circle
The Islanders won 23 draws; Nashville won 32. John Tavares won 10 of 17 for the Isles; Mike Fisher won 9 of 13 for Nashville.

Heavy Hitters
The Islanders out-hit Nashville 31-21.  Tim Wallace had seven hits while Travis Hamonic had five. NHL hit leader Matt Martin added four hits.  Martin leads the NHL with 186 hits.

Third Periods
The Isles outscored the Predators 1-0 in the third period; the Isles have been outscored 48-30 overall in the third period (38-25 excluding empty nets). In the first two periods, the Isles have been outscored 80-70. 

26 to Go
The Isles have scored 9,974 goals in their history (excluding 42 shootout winners), leaving the club
26 shy of 10,000.

Back to .500
The Islanders fall back to all-time NHL .500 (1329-1329-427 in 3,085 games).  The Isles have twice this season been one game below .500. Prior to this season, they had not been below NHL .500 since they were 177-178-83 prior to their victory on January 16, 1978.

The Isles have scored 61 goals over the last 22 games (11-9-2) after scoring only 15 in the previous nine games (1-6-2).  The Isles have scored 53 goals in their 15 wins (3.57 per game) and 43 goals in their other 27 games (0-21-6; 1.59 per game).  In their 22 regulation losses, the Isles have scored 27 goals (1.29 per game).

Head of the Class
John Tavares had the Isles’ goal, giving him 16 points over the last nine games.  He now has 164 career points; he is 18 points ahead of Matt Duchene for most among 2009 draft picks.  No other player in that draft is anywhere close. (Duchene, who turned 21 today, suffered a knee injury in late December and is expected to miss the next month.)   Tavares’ 9-game point streak is the longest by an Islander since Trent Hunter had a nine-game streak (4-5-9) in November, 2009.  No Islander has had a double-digit streak since the lockout.

Friends, Friends, Friends
Moulson has 21 goals this season; John Tavares has earned assists on 14 of them.  He has now been on-ice for 45 consecutive Moulson goals, earning assists on 30 of them, dating back to a Moulson goal on November 17, 2010 against Tampa. 

MOT-ley Crew?
Since being put together nine games ago, Matt Moulson is 5-7-12, Kyle Okposo is 5-4-9, and John Tavares is 5-11-16. 

Trailing Early
The Isles allowed a goal on the first shot for the ninth time this season.  The Isles are 2-5-2 when they allow a goal on the first shot; however this was this first regulation loss on home-ice (2-1-2 at home and 0-4-0 on the road).  It was also the ninth time that the Isles have allowed a goal in the first five minutes.  They are 1-6-2 in those situations this season.

Best v West
The Isles drop to 15-2-7 in their last 24 home games against the Western Conference (with their only other regulation loss being on December 15th against Dallas). Kevin Poulin has been in goal for both defeats.  The Islanders are 4-2-2 in home games against the West this season, with a game remaining against Los Angeles on February 11th.  Overall, this season the Isles are 6-5-4 vs. the West and 10-16-2 against the East.

 Missing Men
Al Montoya (concussion), Marty Reasoner (broken thumb) and Dylan Reese (healthy) were scratched.  Mike Mottau, Rick DiPietro, and Mark Katic are on injured reserve.  The Isles have lost 215 man-games to injury so far this season.  Evegeni Nabokov dressed as the back-up goalie. 

20-20-20, 30-30-30?
Matt Moulson is the first Islander since Jason Blake (4 seasons: 2002-03 to 2006-07) to have at least three consecutive 20-goal seasons. He is nine goals away from a third consecutive 30-goal season; no Islander since Ziggy Palffy has accomplished that feat.  Moulson has 82 goals as an Islander – the most by any Islander since the lockout.

Matt Moulson, the Isles’ reigning ironman, has played in all 207 games since joining the team. Moulson’s streak is the longest for an Islander since Richard Park played in 221 games from October 2006- February 2009.  Travis Hamonic has now played 105 NHL games (all consecutive); he has the longest consecutive game streak on defense for the Isles. 

As Seen on MSG+
Moulson recently joined an exclusive club; he is one of only five Islanders in the last thirty years to appear in 200 consecutive games:
•    Matt Moulson 10/3/2009-1/16/2012  207
•    Richard Park 10/5/2006 – 2/18/2009 221
•    Mariusz Czerkawski 12/23/99 – 4/14/2002 215
•    Bryan McCabe 10/7/95-2/4/98 220
•    Bryan Trottier 3/7/81- 1/12/84 219
Billy Harris played in the first 576 games in Islander history; that figure still stands as the club record.

Century Club
Hamonic is only the 8th defensemen in Islander history to play in 100 consecutive games and the first since Janne Niinimaa. He currently has the 7th longest streak by a defenseman in Islander history.
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.    Jean Potvin 10/23/75-1/2/77 110
7.    Travis Hamonic 11/24/10 – CURRENT 105
8.    Kenny Jonsson 12/26/96-2/4/98 104
Like Hamonic, McCabe and Morrow’s streaks came at the start of their NHL careers.  Niinimaa’s streak included the only 136 games he played as an Islander.

List Time
Career Wins, Active Goalies
1. Martin Brodeur 638
2. Nikolai Khabibulin 327
3. Roberto Luongo 326
4. Evgeni Nabokov  300
5. Miikka Kiprusoff 296

Career Goals, Active Players
13. Patrik Elias 350
14. Brian Rolston 339
15. Dany Heatley 338

Career Games, Active Players

1  Nicklas Lidstrom 1,539
2  Roman Hamrlik  1,350
3  Jaromir Jagr       1,310
4  Teemu Selanne  1,304
5  Brian Rolston     1,222

Rolston’s 1,222 career games is tied for 81st place in NHL history with the late Brad McCrimmon.
Most First Goals of Game (NHL This Season)
1    Matt Moulson     8
2    Evander Kane     7
2    Loui Eriksson    7

Career Goals as an Islander
32    Butch Goring     87
33    Tomas Jonsson     84
34    Matt Moulson     82
35    Wayne Merrick     81
35    Dave Scatchard     81

40    Lorne Henning    73
40    JP Parise     73
42    Alan Kerr     69
42    John Tavares     69
44    Brad Isbister     67

Career Games as an Islander (skaters)
61    Jeff Norton     282
62    Frans Nielsen     280
63    Steve Thomas     275
68    Pierre Turgeon     255
69    Josh Bailey     254
70    Jude Drouin    250
77    Adrian Aucoin     235
78    Darius Kasparaitis     232
78    Dennis Vaske     232
78    Kyle Okposo     232
81    Billy MacMillan     231
81    Zdeno Chara     231
89    Paul Boutilier     211
90    Gary Nylund     209
91    Matt Moulson     207
92    Tom Fitzgerald     205
93    John Tavares     204
94    Billy Carroll     200
95    Ralph Stewart     199
95    Mark Streit     199
97    Tom Kurvers     192
97    Todd Bertuzzi     192

Career Points as an Islander
46    Miroslav Satan     166
47    John Tavares     164
48    Oleg Kvasha     156
51    Michael Peca     142
52    Matt Moulson     141
52    Dave Lewis    141
54    Robert Reichel     140
54    Frans Nielsen     140
56    Bryan Smolinski     139
57    Kyle Okposo     138
Season Series Stats
This was the only meeting of the season between the teams. Since 2003, the Isles are 1-6-1 vs. Nashville, with their only victory coming in a shootout.

Happy Anniversary
22 years ago tonight (1-16-90):  Glenn Healy made a career-high 51 saves as the Islanders blanked the Vancouver Canucks 3-0 at the Coliseum.  It was Healy’s first shutout as an Islander and gave the Islanders their seventh straight win—a total that they have not matched since.
Overall, the Isles are 9-6-2 on this date.

Remembering Dr. King
This was the sixth straight year and 11th time since 1994 that Isles have hosted an MLK Matinee.  The Isles are 1-3-2 in the last six, with the victory coming in 2010 against New Jersey on a Rick DiPietro shutout.

On The Farm
Bridgeport is RED HOT.  The Sound Tigers have won seven straight and improved to 19-17-3-1 with a 3-2 win over Binghamton on Sunday.  Rhett Rakhshani extended his point streak to eight straight games and Casey Cizikas had a goal and an assist to back 34 saves from Anders Nilsson, who won for the third straight day.  The Sound Tigers play only once between now and January 25th – this Saturday night in Glens Falls, NY against the Adirondack Phantoms. Bridgeport’s winning streak is two shy of the club record of 9, set in 2002 and equaled in 2003; the hot streak has moved them within two points of first-place in the AHL Northeast Division.

Up Next
[MSG+ (Islanders Game Night at 6:30pm), WRHU (88.7FM)]
The Islanders begin a two-game road trip in the Nation’s Capital as they face the Capitals for the first time since Dale Hunter replaced Bruce Boudreau as Washington’s head coach.  The Isles rallied for a 5-3 win on November 5th and will be looking for back-to-back wins over the Caps for the first time since 2007.

Eric Hornick has been the statistician on Islander home game telecasts since January 21, 1982. Information contained in “The Skinny” has been gathered from various sources.  Follow Eric @ehornick on Twitter.

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