Oct 8, 2013; Uniondale, NY, USA; New York Islanders center Peter Regin (16) reacts after scoring a goal against the Phoenix Coyotes during the first period of a game at Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports
Welcome to ‘Snap Shots’, our condensed, quick-fix post-game follow up after every match.
Gives you, the reader, bulleted results/impressions/reactions of the game in a flash.
Phoenix Coyotes (1-1-0) at New York Islanders (1-0-1)
Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum, October 8th, 2013
Coyotes (1) – Islanders (6) FINAL
Pre-Game Quips & Questions (Stats courtesy of NYI Gameday Notes)
The New York Islanders are coming off a disappointing shootout loss in which they went into the third period with a 2-0 advantage. The Isles took the ice earlier tonight against Phoenix Coyotes, their first Western Conference opponent in over a year and a half.
The Islanders come into tonight’s game 31-23-13 against the Coyotes, with their last win coming on March 8th, 2009. With Cal Clutterbuck still on the injured reserve list, the Islanders will need to continue filling in the physical void missing during Clutterbuck’s absence.
Evgeni Nabokov gets the start in net tonight for the third consecutive start for the Isles. Will Nabokov sustain his strong play and continue carrying the team, or will the defense finally play a full 60 minute game and help secure a regulation win?
Will the first line of Matt Moulson, John Tavares, and Kyle Okposo build on their success from Saturday night and continue building chemistry?
Mike Smith enters the game with a 2.02 GAA & .946 SV% – will he continue this trend or can the Isles offense break Smith and the Coyotes defense?
The lineup for the Islanders remains the same as we’ve seen in the first two games of the season, with scratches being: Matt Carkner, Griffin Reinhart, and Eric Boulton.
- John Tavares creates somewhat of a scoring chance with an athletic poke check early in the period.
- Peter Regin and Pierre-Marc Bouchard have a 2 on 1 opportunity after a neutral zone turnover by the Coyotes. Brock Nelson delivers a soft pass along with boards to Regin. Regin fires on the high glove side for the goal, Brock Nelson with the assist (01:49). 1-0.
- Casey Cizikas creates a scoring opportunity due to his hustle behind the net. Cizikas finds Colin McDonald in front of the net – shot goes wide.
- Colin McDonald is the victim of a high stick delivered by David Schlemko. First Islanders power play of the night (13:36).
- On the faceoff following the Schlemko penalty, Antoine Vermette is called for a hand pass on the draw. Islanders go on a 5-3 powerplay (13:37).
- After a few chances on the power play, the Isles move the puck through the zone phenomenally. Kyle Okposo handles the puck at the point, passing to Frans Nielsen, who sends a pass through the slot to John Tavares who scores his first goal of the season (15:07). 2-0.
- Penalty kill is solid with Michael Grabner getting in the action and clearing any puck he gets his hand on. Penalty killed.
- Matt Donovan with a terrific fake shot from the point passes to Grabner who shoots wide.
- Tavares creates magic in the zone and provides Travis Hamonic with perfect drop pass and an open shooting lane. Tavares play creates a couple of scoring chances for the Isles.
- Matt Moulson has two chances after coming from behind the net. Mike Smith stops both with his left leg pad.
- Islanders get a couple of shots off from the point. Regin then gets an opportunity from about 15 feet out but gets blocked in front. Puck momentarily leaves the zone and returns with a Matt Martin pass to McDonald up the boards leading to a shot saved by Mike Smith.
- Evgeni Nabokov looks solid halfway through the game. He’s controlling the puck, preventing rebounds, and alert on each puck coming toward the net.
- Kyle Okposo takes a hook courtesy of Mike Ribeiro. Islanders go on the power play (11:15).
- Matt Donovan shows off his power after walking the blue line and fires one on net Mike Smith probably should have stopped, netting his first career NHL goal (11:47). 3-0.
- After Josh Bailey finds the puck amid some choas, he feeds John Tavares who puts on toward the net, only to have the puck deflect off David Schlemko and get passed Mike Smith for Tavares’ second of the night (14:49). 4-1.
- After firing them at the net for two periods, Colin McDonald finds the back of the net after a great pass via Frans Nielsen and Michael Grabner. (17:24). 5-1.
- While on the penalty kill, Casey Cizikas and Matt Martin charge down the ice. Cizikas has a to drag broken up which almost sets up Martin for a point blank goal.
- The Islanders special teams stepped up again, killing off the second Coyotes power play and allowing zero shots on both power plays.
- Grabner takes a couple fists and forearms to the face, drawing a penalty on Martin Hanzal (07:11).
- After Grabner almost takes off on his fourth breakaway, the puck is slightly out of his grasp. He gains control behind the net, feeding Josh Bailey, who feeds Frans Nielsen, who finally sends it back over to Bailey for a beautiful tic-tac-toe goal (12:19). 6-1.
- Islanders go on the power play for a fifth time due to a Mike Riberio slash (17:36) then a delay of game from Shane Doan (19:35).
- Coyotes had a few passes through the slot with no Islanders player in the area. They weren’t scoring chances but
- Passing during the first half of the period by the Islanders defense was sloppy. Andrew MacDonald with a turnover in the neutral zone leading to a solid opportunity by the Coyotes.
- Coyotes begin to apply pressure in the Islanders zone. Isles having a tough time clearing the zone.
- Matt Donovan on one shift struggled handling the puck two separate occasions.
- John Tavares gets called on a high stick, leading to the first Coyotes power play of the game (17:09)
- Pass from Frans Nielsen intended for Michael Grabner doesn’t connect, which leads to a two on one chance for the Coyotes. Shot wide.
- Just under four minutes into the second period, the Coyotes have full control of the Isles zone. Looks as if the Coyotes are on a power play and takes the Islanders just about a minute to finally clear the zone and get new legs on the ice.
- Nabokov doesn’t get much help after a pass from Mikkel Boedker finds Martin Hanzal who manages to shot the puck through Josh Bailey’s legs, which may or may not have screened Nabokov (12:30). 3-1.
- After the whistle, everyone gets together in front of Nabokov. Matt Donovan gets into it and is sent to the box for roughing (01:33).
- Power play was flat in the third. It looked as though the Isles were getting a little too comfortable with their lead. Lots of passing, not a whole lot else.
- Colin McDonald gets into it with Shane Doan in front of the Islanders bench and takes a two minute penalty for roughing (13:11).
- In very uncharacteristic fashion, Frans Nielsen didn’t like what happened to him in the corner. Nielsen hacked Martin Hanzal’s legs and in Hanzal’s defense came Mikkel Boedker. Nielsen to the box for slashing (13:42).
Post-Game Responses & Reactions
O: Moulson-Tavares-Okposo; Grabner-Nielsen-Bailey; Nelson-Regin-Bouchard; Martin-Cizikas-McDonald.
D: MacDonald-Hamonic; Hickey-Visnovsky; Strait-Donovan
G: Evgeni Nabokov
The Islanders came out to play tonight. They clearly worked on the weaknesses they showed on Saturday and the win was a result of a complete 60 minute team effort.
One of the questions we posed was regarding the played of the goalies on both sides of the ice. The Islanders provided the offense needed to break Mike Smith by putting five goals past him before being replaced by Thomas Griess at the start of the third period. On the Isles end, Evgeni Nabokov played great between the pipes. He limited rebounds, his glove was on point, and most importantly, received help in front of him. Overall, Nabokov looked great in net tonight.
The team looks to be clicking in terms of chemistry. The couple of days off proved to be beneficial for the team. It was seen most noticeably in special teams, by converting on two of five chances and killing off all three of the Coyotes power play chances.
A fun, high scoring game any Islanders fan should be pleased with. Next up, the Isles head to the Windy City to take on the defending Stanley Cup Champion Chicago Blackhawks.