The New York Islanders have had a tough season to say the least. From the 13-game road trip at the start the season to the many injuries and COVID outbreaks, it has been tough to stay consistent. Even with the team being far out of the playoffs, the Isles encouraging play in March and early April provides hope for next fall.
Since March 1, the Islanders have a record of 12-7-1, by far their best stretch of the season record wise. There are many reasons contributing to the team's current success.
Islanders Players Second Half Surges
Brock Nelson, Kyle Palmieri, and Anthony Beauvillier are three Isles players who have turned it on in the second half of the season. Nelson was already far ahead with the team lead in goals and is now up to 33 on the season. Brock's goal total is even more impressive with the fact that he missed a few weeks in December.
Kyle Palmieri only had one goal in the entire first half of the year, now he has 13 goals combined with 14 assists. He is a player who most likely will not be able to be traded, so it is definitely a good sign that he is starting to produce. The same goes for Anthony Beauvillier, who had a slow start but has continued to have a good second half.
Islanders Lines Firing On All Cylinders
The team has struggled to gain chemistry throughout the year. The Parise-Barzal-Wahlstrom combination has been buzzing and creating scoring chances every shift. Brock Nelson has been on a tear contributing to his linemates, Beauvillier and Lee having success. Kyle Palmieri and Josh Bailey have rebounded with JG Pageau in the middle.
Distraction Free Hockey
The biggest reason for the Islanders' recent success is that there have been zero distractions. Even though the team is trying to chase down the Capitals and sit eleven points behind them, there are no outside issues.
Early in the season, the Islanders were ravaged by COVID-19 outbreaks, injuries, and the long road trip. They have had most of their main roster in the season's final months, gaining chemistry and finally playing their brand of hockey.
Some changes still need to be made in the offseason to improve the roster, but many fans have been encouraged by the Isles fight down the stretch. The Islanders have restored hope for next season.