The NY Islanders look to snap a six game winless streak when the Detroit Red Wings come to UBS Arena.
The Islanders have really struggled to score, especially in the third period, during the month of January. That continued on Wednesday when the Islanders traveled to Ottawa and mustered just one goal in a 2-1 loss. The Senators jumped out to a 2-0 lead thanks to goals from Shane Pinto and Claude Giroux. Late in the second period, the Isles got one back off the stick of Brock Nelson, his team leading 18th goal, but it was not enough. Isles goaltender Semyon Varlamov got the start and stopped 36 of 38 shots faced on the night.
The Red Wings stayed hot on Thursday by grabbing points for the fourth time in the last five games, as they defeated the Montreal Canadiens, 4-3 in overtime. The game went back and forth all night in regulation as Detroit led 1-0, 2-1, 3-2 but saw the Habs comeback to tie it all three times. Then in the extra session, it took Robby Fabbri 2:36 to get the game winner, his fourth goal of the year. The Red Wings also outshot Montreal 42-23 in the victory as the team improved to 3-1-1 in their last five contests.
The Islanders and Red Wings are meeting for the second time this season. The first was back on November 5th at Little Caesars Arena. It was Detroit who came away with the 3-0 win thanks to goals from Lucas Raymond, Pius Suter, and Dominik Kubalik and a 24-save shutout from Ville Husso. All-time, the Isles are 56-53-6-4 against the Wings.
Players to Watch
In his first 40 games of the season, Mathew Barzal was averaging a point per game. Recently, though, things have not gone well for the former Calder Trophy winner. With just one point in his last nine games, Barzal needs to find a way to make a bigger impact for his team if they have any plans to turn this ship around in the final weekend before the All-Star break.
While the Islanders’ offense runs through the production of Barzal, the same goes for the Red Wings and Dylan Larkin. The captain of the Wings is the only player on the team with at least 35 points this season, which is pretty remarkable for the team that isn’t too far from the playoff picture. With four points in his last five games, Larkin will look to give the Islanders issues on the defensive end.