Islanders 3 keys to Game 2: Take advantage of opportunity

Head coach Barry Trotz and assistant coach Lane Lambert of the New York Islanders (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
Head coach Barry Trotz and assistant coach Lane Lambert of the New York Islanders (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images) /
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New York Islanders
An overhead view of the penalty box at the home of the New York Islanders at the Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images) /

Stay Out of the Box, Please

In Game 1, the Islanders handed the Washington Capitals a lifeline with their parade to the penalty box. With seven power-play opportunities, the Capitals were able to get the chances they needed to get on the board and build a 2-0 lead. But without that power play, the Capitals aren’t in Game 1.

Through 36 minutes of 5on5 time through Game 1, the Islanders held a 37 to 26 Corsi advantage (58.73%), a 20-11 shot advantage, a wild 21-9 scoring chances-for advantage, and a 9-3 high-danger chances-for advantage.

Oh, and a 3-0 goals-for advantage. This game was not even close at 5on5.

With 15:11 of power play time, the Capitals had 12 shots on net (that’s 46% of their shots during the game), had ten scoring chances, seven high danger chances, and two goals.

Let that sink in for a second. That 15:11 of time on the power play is a wild number. That’s a quarter of the game on the man-advantage for the Washington Capitals. That cannot, under any circumstance, happen again.

I’m sure Barry Trotz has repeated that numerous times to his team in the leadup to Game 2. Washington will come out firing on all cylinders not only to avenge their fallen teammate but to avenge their 4-2 loss in Game 1.

The Islanders can’t lose themselves in the moment and fall into a game of physical one-upmanship with the Capitals. They will certainly lose that games based on how ineffective the Isles penalty kill is.

The Islanders have the third-worst PK in terms of inefficiency at 71.4 percent. Only the Jets and Coyotes are worse for all 24 teams at 70.6 and 68.8 percent, respectively.

Stay out of the box.