"I'm pissed off right now." That's how Barry Trotz addressed the media after his New York Islanders 3-0 loss at the hands of the Seattle Kraken. A sentiment shared by just about every single Islanders fans right about now.
It wasn't just that the Islanders lost. Of course, losing is never a good thing. But like we've all said a number of times now, it's how they lost that matters the most. Against the Kraken, the Islanders just didn't show up. That's why Barry Trotz - and the rest of us - is pissed off.
New York Islanders enter break with tail between their legs
Through 60 minutes they managed 19 shots on net and eight high-danger chances. Matt Martin led the way in high-danger chances with 2 while linemate Case Cizikas had one. The Isles top six (Barzal, Lee, Bailey, Beauvillier, Nelson, Palmieri) combined for three. The fourth line - two-thirds of it anyways - created just as many high-danger chances as the entire top six combined.
And I'm being generous with that "top-six". Kyle Palmieri - who had one of the top six's HDCF - played a total of 12:19, the lowest for any skater on the night. So including him in the top-six is kind of a stretch. But he was listed on L2 in the official lineup so I'm listing him there.
Getting so little from the top-six, who are responsible for creating offense, is bad. Not to mention they were facing one of the worst defensive teams in the league. The Kraken have the sixth most goals-against in the NHL with 159.
The Islanders had done well in the two games prior. They played a good game against the Wild (outside of the first 5 minutes of the contest) and followed that up with a strong effort against the Senators. They were trending in the right direction.
But in a single game, that trend was undone. Now the Islanders go into the All-Star break with their tails between their legs. Pissed off and embarrassed and maybe more importantly pondering some pretty important questions about the second half of the 2021-22 season. Do they try to push up the standings or do they get started on re-tooling for 2022-23?