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The Skinny

by Eric Hornick / New York Islanders

Game 63
Washington 3, Isles 2

Alex Ovechkin scored an unassisted goal 95 seconds into overtime to give the Washington Capitals a 3-2 win over the Islanders in front of 18,506 at the Verizon Center. Troy Brouwer scored twice in the final 3:29 of regulation to tie it. The win pushes the Capitals into eighth place, eight points ahead of the Isles.

The Scoring:
First Period
04:14NYI Josh Bailey (7) - ASST: F. Nielsen (17) AND A. MacDonald (11)

Second Period – None

Third Period

02:16NYI Matt Moulson (27) - ASST: S. Staios (8) AND P. Parenteau (44)
16:31WSH Troy Brouwer (16) - ASST: M. Perreault (10) AND J. Chimera (15)
19:34WSH Troy Brouwer (17) - ASST: B. Laich (20) AND D. Wideman (29)

OT Period

01:35WSH Alex Ovechkin (26) - ASST: NONE

The Skinny
The Isles are 7-6-2 since the All-Star Break and 10-7-3 in their last 20 games. The Isles are 10-5-1 against the Southeast, with four games still to play. Frans Nielsen played his 300th NHL game, all with the Islanders – he is the 60th skater in Isles history to play in 300 games. Nielsen earned his 100th career assist (and 150th point) on Josh Bailey’s first goal in 10 games; Moulson’s goal gives him a career-high 54 points (53 last season). Ovechkin now has a club-record 11 career overtime goals, including four (in the last four seasons) against the Islanders; he is only the 13th player in NHL history with at least 11 OT tallies.

The Shots
Islanders: 3-12-8-1=24
Capitals:  13-7-13-1=34

Home and Road
The Islanders are 26-28-9 overall and are 12-14-4 on the road.
The Caps are 32-26-5 overall and 21-8-2 at home.

In the Nets
Evgeni Nabokov made 31 saves, but suffers his first OT/SO loss of the season.  He is now 15-15-1 on the season and 10-1-1 in his career against Washington.
Michal Neuvirth stopped 22 shots as he evens his season record at 9-9-3. Neuvirth is 4-0-0 in his career against the Islanders.

Leaning on #91
John Tavares has 61 points (25-36-61) on 143 Islander goals this season (42.7 percent).  No Islander since Zigmund Palffy has recorded points on over 40% of the team’s goals in a complete season. Tavares finishes February with eight points after having 22 points in January.

Don’t Forget PA
With 59 points, Parenteau has points on 41.3 percent of the Islanders’ goals this season.  He now has 44 assists – most by any Islander since Travis Green had 45 and Ziggy Palffy had 44 in 1995-96.  Only three players: Henrik Sedin, Erik Karlsson and Claude Giroux have more assists. (Joe Thornton also has 44, entering San Jose’s West Coast game.)

Power Plays
The Islanders went 0-3 on the power play while Washington was 0-4. The Isles are 1-13 in their last five games with the extra man and have killed only 12 of 18 in the same span. 

They Said It
Josh Bailey: “It’s unacceptable to give up a two-goal lead that late.”

They Tweeted It
@StapeNewsday, quoting Travis Hamonic: "It’s cliche but it’s part of the process, learning how to win. Don’t know how many times we have to learn it the hard way."

The Coach
“When we had the lead like that, we got the crowd there into the game.”

Leading Ice Men
Travis Hamonic led the Isles with 24:15; Denis Wideman led Washington with 22:35.

In the Circle
The Islanders won 28 draws; Washington won 24 – the Isles won the majority of draws for only the third time in 12 games. Marty Reasoner won 4 of 6 for the Isles; Mathieu Perrault won 4 of 6 for Washington.

Heavy Hitters
The Islanders were out-hit 25-19. NHL hit leader Matt Martin had 3 hits, raising his total to 293.  Martin, who had a club record 299 hits last season (hits have only been recorded since 2005-06) leads the NHL in hits by a wide margin.  He is on a pace to have 381 hits, which would be the highest total of any NHL player since the lockout.  Milan Jurcina had 5 hits for the Isles.

Lots of Blocks
The Isles were credited with 19 blocks. They lead the NHL with 1,075. Eleven different Islanders had at least one; Milan Jurcina and Marty Reasoner each had 3.

Goals by Period (Season)
Isles 51-43-46-3 = 143
Opponents: 56-57-65-6 = 184

Strange Stat
The Isles are have won 11 of 14 games that have been tied after two periods (11-2-1) but after tonight’s OT loss, they have won only 13 of 20 games that they have led after two periods (13-1-6).

Great 8
The Isles are now 91-98 in games decided by an overtime goal in their history. Alex Ovechkin has beaten them four times; Brett Burns and Adam Graves (two each) are the only other opponents with more than one OT goal against the Isles.

All-time Winners
The Islanders remain 3 games over all-time NHL .500 (1339-1336-430 in 3,105 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 85 goals in their 26 wins (3.27 per game) and 59 goals in their other 37 games (0-28-9; 1.59 per game). In their 28 regulation losses, the Isles have scored 34 goals (1.21 per game).

Four Straight in Double Digits
The Isles finish February 6-6-2 for 14 points; it’s their fourth straight month with at least 10 standings points.  It’s the first time that they have done that since October 2009-January 2010.

Head of the Class
John Tavares has 182 career points; he is 34 points ahead of Matt Duchene for most among 2009 draft picks.  No other player in that draft is anywhere close.
Longest Point Streaks in NHL, Last 2 Seasons
•    Sidney Crosby, 25 games (11/5/10-12/28/10)
•    John Tavares, 12 games (12/29/11-1/21/12)
•    Ilya Kovalchuk 12 games (2/1/11-2/25/11)

Friends, Friends, Friends
Moulson has 27 goals this season; John Tavares has earned assists on 18 of them.  He has now been on-ice for 51 consecutive Moulson goals, earning assists on 34 of them, dating back to a Moulson goal on November 17, 2010 against Tampa. 

Three Different Leaders
Matt Moulson continues to lead the Isles in goals (27); PA Parenteau leads the Isles in assists (44); John Tavares leads the Isles in points (61).

25-25-25, 30-30-30?
Matt Moulson is the first Islander since Ziggy Palffy to have at least three consecutive 25-goal seasons. He is three goals away from a third consecutive 30-goal season; Palffy was the last Islander to accomplish that feat. Moulson has 88 goals as an Islander – the most by any Islander since the lockout. Moulson has opened the scoring ten times this season and the Isles are 9-1-0 when he does so. He is the first Islander with at least ten opening goals since Alexei Yashin had 12 in 2001-02.

20-20-20 x 2
Moulson and Tavares are the first Islander teammates to record at least twenty goals in three straight seasons since Mark Parrish and Jason Blake did so in 2002-03, 2003-04, and 2005-06.  Tavares, by the way, is the fifth player to score at least 20 goals for the Islanders in each of his first three NHL seasons, joining:
•    Billy Harris (first six seasons: 1972-73 through 1977-78),
•    Clark Gillies (five: 1974-75 through 1978-79),
•    Bryan Trottier (13: 1975-76 through 1987-88) and
•    Mike Bossy (all 10 seasons: 1977-78 through 1986-87).

Matt Moulson, the Isles’ reigning ironman, has played in all 227 games since joining the team. Moulson’s streak is the longest for an Islander in the Post-Cup era.  Moulson is one of only five Islanders in the last thirty years to appear in 200 consecutive games:
•    Matt Moulson 10/3/2009-CURRENT  227
•    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
Billy Harris played in the first 576 games in Islander history; that figure still stands as the club record.

Four other forwards: PA Parenteau, Matt Martin, Frans Nielsen and John Tavares have also played in every game this season while Mark Streit is the only Islander defender to do so.

Missing Men
Nino Niederreiter was the Islanders’ only scratch.  Dylan Reese and Rick DiPietro are on injured reserve.  The Isles have lost 304 man-games to injury so far this season, including 62 by Mark Katic who has been activated and assigned to Bridgeport.  Al Montoya served as the back-up.
Career Years
•    Matt Moulson: 27 assists and 54 points are new career highs. He has 27 goals, four shy of his career best.
•    PA Parenteau: 44 assists and 59 points are new career highs. He has 15 goals, five shy of his career best.
•    John Tavares is 25-36-51; he is four goals, two assists and six points shy of career highs, all set last season.
•    Frans Nielsen has 13 goals, matching a career-high set last year.

List Time
Career Wins, Active Goalies
1. Martin Brodeur 647
2. Roberto Luongo 334
3. Nikolai Khabibulin 328
4. Evgeni Nabokov 308
5. Miikka Kiprusoff 303

Career Wins
21. Sean Burke 324
22. Evgeni Nabokov 308
23. Billy Smith 305

Most First Goals of Game (NHL This Season)
1    Matt Moulson     10
2    Ilya Kovalchuk     8
2    Evander Kane     8

Career Goals as an Islander
31    Travis Green     92
32    Matt Moulson     88
33    Butch Goring     87
34    Tomas Jonsson     84
35    Wayne Merrick     81
35    Dave Scatchard     81
37       Marty McInnis    79
38    Miroslav Satan    78
38    John Tavares     78
40    Claude Lapointe    76
Career Games as an Islander (skaters)
56    Mikko Makela     307
57    Gord Lane     304
58    Arron Asham     300
58    Roman Hamrlik     300
58    Frans Nielsen     300
61    Gord Dineen     287
62    Jeff Norton     282
63    Steve Thomas    275
64    Josh Bailey     272
65    Blake Comeau     261
65    Andre St. Laurent     261
69    Pierre Turgeon    255
70    Kyle Okposo     252
71    Jude Drouin     250
83    Chris Campoli    228
84    Matt Moulson     227
84    Bryan Smolinski    227
86    John Tavares     224
87    Michael Peca    222
88    Bob Lorimer    220
88    Bryan McCabe    220
90    Mark Streit     219
91    Andy Hilbert    218

Career Points as an Islander

38    Jeff Norton    188
39    Lorne Henning     184
40    John Tavares     182
41    Randy Wood     172
47    Miro Satan    166
48    Oleg Kvasha    158
49    Matt Moulson     155
50    Alan Kerr    154
51    Roman Hamrlik    153
52    Frans Nielsen     149
53    Kyle Okposo     147
54    Michael Peca     142
Season Series Stats

The Islanders lead the season series two games to one (and five points to 2). The teams will finish the season series on March 13th at the Coliseum.  The Isles are 2-1-3 in their last six trips to Washington
The Isles are 1-0-1 against Washington since Dale Hunter became the Capitals coach.

Happy Anniversary
Nineteen years ago tonight (2-28-93):  Pierre Turgeon tallies the winning goal in overtime as the Islanders defeat Hartford 7-6. Both Turgeon and Steve Thomas had four points in the game.
All-time, the Isles are 9-7-2 on this date, including a Yann Danis shutout of Buffalo in 2009.

On The Farm
The Sound Tigers are off until Friday, when they visit Albany. Bridgeport is 30-18-3-3 overall, having earned points in 20 of their last 21 games.  Defenseman Aaron Ness was the hero in the team’s last game (Sunday), tallying twice in the period as the Sound Tigers rallied for a 3-2 win over Albany.

Up Next
[MSG+2 (Islanders Game Night at 6:30pm), WRHU (88.7FM)]
The road trip continues on Thursday as the Islanders look for their third straight win in Philadelphia as they face the Flyers.  The Isles were 0-11-2 over the past four seasons in Philly, but have beaten the Flyers 4-1 and 1-0 (shootout), both behind Evgeni Nabokov at the Wells Fargo Center this season.
The Isles will certainly be the more rested team as the Flyers had a Tuesday night game in San Jose.
And Finally…
Wait until 2016.  The Islanders are off Wednesday (February 29th).  They are 1-2-1 in their four all-time Leap Day games.
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.
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