You would think that someone who has over 200 career goals and five 20 goal seasons under his belt that Anders Lee would have scored a hat trick earlier than his 568th career game. Well, that wasn't the case for the New York Islanders captain.
Countless times he's had multi-goal games but has never been able to get over that hump, until last night that is:
With just two seconds remaining, Anders Lee scored on the power play to secure a 6-0 win and a first career hatty. It was on this day last year where his season came to an end due to a freak ACL tear against the New Jersey Devils.
It was almost too fitting that 364 days later he netted his first hat trick. It's been tough for him this year, as before this little five goal stretch in the last two games he's been struggling a little bit registering just one point over his last eight games.
He still might not be "100 percent" recovered from that injury but his goal scoring the last few nights brings a return to normalcy for Anders, who now has 203 career goals to his name. After the game, he mentioned the healing process and how it took a little bit longer than he would've liked:
"“I think it took me a little longer than I would’ve hoped for,” Lee said of his healing process. “It’s one of those things, you just gotta keep going and keep working through and right now it’s feeling pretty good.”"
Anders now has 19 goals on the season, and is on pace for 29 goals this year. He has an outside chance of 30 goals, which would be nice considering where his season started.
Don't count out this Islanders captain. Every time it seems like the doubt creeps in for how much longer he can continue to play his net front presence role, he gets back on track. Finding some assists is the next step as he's stuck on just seven on the year. I'm happy for Anders Lee though, and glad the captain had something to smile about last night.