Top Shelf – Islanders Daily 10/4/13


Sep 27, 2013; Uniondale, NY, USA; New York Islanders center John Tavares (91) scores a goal on Nashville Predators goalie Pekka Rinne (35) during the first period at Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Anthony Gruppuso-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Islanders play their first meaningful hockey game in 146 days tonight, as they head to Prudential Center to face the New Jersey Devils in their long-awaited 2013-14 season opener.

The first round playoff series loss to the Pittsburgh Penguins back in May is ancient history, and if you were to ask any of the Isles players or coaches, they would tell you that they’ve moved on from last season and are fully focused on starting another playoff run tonight.

Eyes On Isles will be in attendance at The Rock tonight, along with plenty of other Islanders fans wearing blue and orange.

Stay tuned to EOI for all your Islanders news, including pre- and post-game pieces for tonight’s tilt against the Devils and the remaining 81 games on the regular season schedule.

-Mike (@MichaelWillhoft)

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Last Night In The NHL

Tampa Bay Lightning vs. Boston Bruins

The Boston Bruins scored two shorthanded goals and Tuukka Rask stopped 32-of-33 shots en route to a 3-1 win over the Tampa Bay Lightning at TD Garden last night.

Boston never trailed in the game, thanks to goals by Chris Kelly (SH), Milan Lucic and Patrice Bergeron (SH).

The newest member of the Lightning, Valtteri Filppula, recorded the lone goal for Tampa Bay, off of assists from Eric Brewer and Alex Killorn.

New Jersey Devils vs. Pittsburgh Penguins

Nine different Penguins players appeared on the stat sheet last night, as Pittsburgh took their first game of the season 3-0 over the New Jersey Devils.

New Jersey netminder Cory Schneider couldn’t keep the Penguins off the board, although few goalies in the NHL are able to slow down the offensive juggernaut in Pittsburgh.

Sidney Crosby scored in the opening period, his first point of the season.

Calgary Flames vs. Washington Capitals

Calgary blew 3-0 and 4-1 leads on the road in Washington, falling 5-4 in a shootout to the Capitals. The Flames were well on their way to perhaps proving they were a better team that initially predicted, but imploded during the second half of last night’s game on their way to a tough loss.

Alex Ovechkin scored twice during regulation and netted the game-winning goal in the shootout, sending the Verizon Center crowd home happy. Mark Giordano added two assists for Calgary.

Los Angeles Kings vs. Minnesota Wild

The Kings won a hard-fought game against the Wild in a shootout last night, 3-2. Los Angeles got goals from Drew Doughty and Jeff Carter.

Minnesota twice took the lead in the game, scoring two times in the first period to go up 1-0 and 2-1, but couldn’t hold onto the lead. Matt Cooke and Jonas Bordin were the goal scorers for the Wild.

Carter also had the game winner in the shootout for Los Angeles.

Nashville Predators vs. St. Louis Blues

The Nashville Predators ran into a buzz saw in the St Louis Blues last night, dropping their season opener 4-2. The Blues came out of the gate strong, scoring three first-period goals in the game’s first 10 minutes and coasting to victory thereafter.

David Backes had a goal and an assist for St. Louis, and newly re-signed defenseman and popular Norris Trophy preseason pick Alex Pietrangelo added two assists of his own.

Florida Panthers vs. Dallas Stars

Tim Thomas made 25 saves in his first NHL action since 2011, helping the Florida Panthers to their first win of the season, 4-2 over the Dallas Stars.

Marcel Goc scored at 15:05 and 18:30 of the third period to ice the game for the Panthers. Brian Campbell chipped in two assists in the win.

Dallas got a goal and an assist from Brenden Dillon.

New York Rangers vs. Phoenix Coyotes

Radim Vrbata had a hat trick and Mike Smith made 23 saves as the Phoenix Coyotes beat the New York Rangers at home by a score of 4-1.

The Rangers scored on the power play, but couldn’t otherwise get much going offensively. The Coyotes opened the scoring in the first period and later answered the Rangers’ goal quickly en route to the win at Arena.

Vancouver Canucks vs. San Jose Sharks

The Sharks took care of business at SAP Center last night, beating the Vancouver Canucks 4-1 behind two assists from superstar-in-the-making Logan Couture.

San Jose scored four unanswered goals after Vancouver netted the first goal of the game; the Sharks slammed the door on any possible Canucks comeback with two goals just over one minute of game time apart late in the third period.

As always, thanks for reading us at EyesOnIsles. Keep it right here for all of your NHL coverage and up-to-the-minute Islanders news. Be sure to check the menu bar at the top of the page for ways to connect with the EyesOnIsles staff; we’re always happy to talk hockey.