Remember when John Tavares was the most lethal scorer in the NHL? Remember when the New York Islanders were the odds-on favorite to win the Stanley Cup? They both happened around the same time.
Now, while the Islanders Cup chances fell off a cliff, Tavares remained as one of the top scorers in the league. He finished 18th in the NHL with 84 points.
His prolific scoring period I’m referring to occurred between October 21st and November 5th. In those 15 days, Tavares put up an outstanding 15 points including five multipoint nights and two hat-tricks.
Out of all that I want to focus on the second hat-trick. It was his second in three nights and took place against the previous season’s Stanley Cup Finalist and future President’s Trophy winner Nashville Predators.
Sure Juuse Saros was in nets, but the Predators were still stocked with talent from top to bottom. They still had that insane defensive unit of Roman Josi, P.K. Subban, and Mathias Ekholm.
Tavares put up half the goals as the Islanders routed the Predators on the road 6-2.
The best of the three was the last in the bunch. It came on the power play right from the top of the key and straight past Saros. It was a perfectly worked goal. Something the Islanders hasn’t done too frequently at that point of the season.
The next game Tavares would score another two goals. Leading some fans to expect nothing less than a hat-trick from the captain.