The New York Islanders lost a back and forth contest with the Toronto Maple Leafs as the Leafs sweep the season series between the two.
Chris Gibson got the start in net for the New York Islanders as their season continues to wind down. The Maple Leafs came to town looking to sweep the season series with the Islanders, and we got an entertaining game.
In the first Anthony Beauvillier remained hot with his 18th goal of the season. Beau now has 20 points since being sent to the AHL and then recalled, that would put him on a 51 point pace over the course of a full 82 game season.
That one goal lead didn’t last very long. Nazem Kadri would tie up the game with his 31st of the season at the 16:22 mark of the period. The Islanders would nab one more on the power play thanks to Johnny Boychuk. His sixth of the year gave the Isles the lead after one period of play.
In the second period, Nikita Zaitsev tied up the game at two nearly eight minutes into the period. The Isles would then capitalize with an extra skater on with the delayed penalty. Brock Nelson netted his 19th of the year.
Somehow, someway Brock Nelson is going to finish the year with 20 goals. It always amazes me how he can catch fire at the end of the year and get that 20 goal mark.
Mitch Marner would add one before the period was over. It was his second point of the evening and he also extended his point streak to 11 games. At the end of two, the score was once again tied at three goals apiece.
Early in the third period James van Riemsdyk netted his 36th of the year. JVR is heating up right before he’s set to become a UFA, a good business decision for him.
The lead wasn’t safe, in familiar fashion for this game, Tavares tied it up with his 34th of the year. Not only did J.T. find the back of the net but he also got physical:
I’ve never seen Tavares hit somebody like that. He was clearly upset about a noncall and took it out on Morgan Reilly. He then proceeded to show more forms of life by yelling at the ref once he got back to the bench.
Tavares was in rare form tonight. He looked like a man on a mission, which is a positive sign for the Islanders if they hope to retain him.
Auston Matthews would score the final goal of the game, giving the Leafs a 5-4 victory over the New York Islanders. One of the most glaring stats we can see is the giveaways. The Isles gave away the puck 18 times while Toronto only did it eight times.
Only four more games to go and the tank is back on. If the season ended right now the Isles would have the seventh-best odds in the draft lottery.