To be fair – I did not finish the game, as I have to be up quite early in the morning.
However, the Isles did have a 3-0 lead, and were playing perhaps their best hockey of the season in the second period. They were absolutely dominant and controlling the play.
Josh Bailey finally lit the lamp getting a deflection of a Mark Streit slap-pass in the first period to make the game 1-0 for the Isles.
In the second, Brian Rolston got his second just over 30 seconds into the frame on a pass from PA Parentea, to make it 2-0. Michael Grabner added his fifth of the season midway through, and you would think that the Isles were on cruise control.
Colorado got their first with justover 20 seconds remaining in the second period, on a 5 on 3 goal. Their second came from long time Avalanche Milan Hejduk to cut it to one. Jan Hejda shot a puck that deflected off of Mike Mottau to tie the game up.
The Isles had a power play late in the third, but could not convert.
Then in OT, goaltender Al Montoya got hit again, one of about 5 or 6 incidents in which he was ‘barraled’ over by a Colorado player. When the netminder retalliated, he received a 2 minute roughing minor. Kyle Quincey would score on the subsequent power play 2:39 into OT, giving the Avalanche the 4-3 win.
Montoya did not address the media, in order to be looked at for possible concussion symptoms (not known at this time of the extent).
According to media reports, there were a number of blown calls by officiating (nothing new for Islander fans), and the team just did not respond the same way in the third period, as they did in the prior two.
“We tightened up, plain and simple,” Brian Rolston said to the media after the game. “You need guys to step up and make confident plays, make sure pucks get in deep and keep doing the little things to get wins in games like that. It’s unacceptable to let it slide, playing as well as we were.”
The Isles now head onto Vancouver who are playing a flip-flop game of late, and are right now sitting outside the top 8 in the Western Conference. I look to hopefully see the Islanders rebound and give the team a much needed victory before their home stand next week, starting on Tuesday against the hated Rangers.
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