To say the New York Islanders are off to a lackluster start this season would be putting it lightly. Through 22 games they are a putrid 6-11-5 (17) and sit 12 points out of a playoff spot. They are also 20 points shy of being in the top three for the division.
The one bright spot about their horrid start, there is still a long way to go in the season. They've had a historically long season-opening road trip, covid issues, and injuries. Nobody wants to hear excuses in professional sports however, these have all played a role in their poor start.
Though only winning once since November 6, they have played better of late. The Isles broke their 11 game-winless snide Tuesday night in Ottawa, beating the Senators 5-3. They should have gotten their first win in UBS Arena last night, but alas the Predators scored with 12 seconds left to secure a 4-3 Nashville win.
Last season the Isles were 21-4-3 at home. They used the farewell tour of the Nassau Coliseum to secure 45 of a possible 56 points at home. Through seven games at UBS Arena, they sit at 0-5-2. Eight of the Islanders next ten games will be at home.
New York Islanders Must Reverse Home Woes
The Isles have a chance to build momentum on Long Island. Last night the Isles had a golden opportunity to grab their first home win of the UBS era when Noah Dobson gave them the lead just over five minutes into the third.
Saturday night will see the Devils come to the Island. It's tough to see the Islanders make the playoffs at this point, but they do have 60 games left to turn their season around. It can start Saturday against a divisional opponent.
The Isles have a chance to get back two key pieces as Brock Nelson and Casey Cizikas have been skating and are close to returning. Despite only playing 15 games, and not playing since November 21, Nelson still leads the team with nine goals. Cizikas can easily be looked at as part of the heart and soul of the Islanders.
There is still ample time for the Islanders to turn their season around, but as Yogi Berra said, "It's getting late early."