Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports
Islander captain John Tavares continued his recent torrid scoring pace, recording five points including the 300th of his career in Monday’s game against the Dallas Stars. Tavares connected for three goals and added two assists as the Isles cruised to a 7-3 victory.
Playing without regular winger Kyle Okposo, who missed the game due to the birth of his first child, Tavares connected with various teammates throughout the course of the evening. Trailing 2-0 after the first period, Tavares came out swinging in the second, recording a goal and an assist on the first two of an Isles four-goal second period. The assist set up the first career NHL goal of rookie Ryan Strome just 1:41 into the frame. He kicked off the third period in similar fashion, setting up defenseman Brian Strait’s second goal of the season after just 1:24 of play. Tavares went on to add a pair of power play markers to round out the five point evening.
The five point night ties for the highest single game output of Tavares NHL career. His last five point effort came on March 16, 2010. Monday’s three goal effort was the fifth career hat trick for Tavares. He recorded his first on October 23, 2010. The stellar evening gives him 20 goals and 51 points in 43 games on the season. At his current scoring pace Tavares would amass totals of 38 goals and 96 points, both of which would be career highs.
The seven goal output represents the most goals the Islanders have registered in a game to date this season. With the win over Dallas the Isles improve to 2-1 in January, 4-1 in their last five. Despite a forgettable November, the win moves the Isles to within nine points of second place in the Metropolitan Division. Tavares has accumulated twelve points over those five games, including seven goals and five assists.