Throughout the week of Dec. 11, the NY Islanders played three games in total. While the Islanders lost their first two games, in the third and final game of the week the Islanders picked up a massive win over a very good Vegas team. Sebastian Aho continued his impressive play all week, as he was able to both get the puck in the net and get the puck to open teammates.
In the first game of the week, the Islanders traveled to Boston to take on the red-hot Boston Bruins. The Bruins are first in the Atlantic Division and are 24-4-2. This looked like a mismatch on paper, but the Islanders were able to go into Boston and come away with one point, losing in a shootout.
Aho made his presence felt that game as he would find Casey Cizikas around five minutes into the third period to tie the game up at three. This goal would force overtime, followed by a shootout where the Islanders would then fall to the Bruins. Leaving Boston with a point, however, was great. A solid performance by the team overall in that game.
""I thought we started well, I thought we outplayed them and then I thought when they gained momentum, we had trouble getting it back," Head Coach Lane Lambert said. "- Lane Lambert on hot start in Arizona
Then came the nightmare game of the week. On Friday, the Islanders traveled to Arizona to take on the Arizona Coyotes. While this looked like a very winnable game for the Islanders, the Islanders would, unfortunately, fall to the Coyotes for the second time this season, 5-4.
Aho wasted no time in this game, scoring a goal with a little over 18 minutes remaining in the first period, giving the Islanders the 1-0 lead. Brock Nelson and Josh Bailey would be credited with assists for this goal. Later on, in the first period, Aho would find Robin Salo, who would then find Mat Barzal to put the Islanders ahead by two.
With the Islanders' schedule only looking tougher, they needed to come away with the win in Arizona. Unfortunately, that wasn't to be and the Islanders would face one of their toughest tasks of the week on Saturday when they traveled to Nevada to take on the very good, Vegas Golden Knights.
The Islanders continued to work their magic of losing to bad teams, but being able to beat good teams as they would defeat Vegas, 5-2. Around five minutes into the second period, Aho would find Hudson Fasching for a goal to put the Islanders up, 2-1. Simon Holmstrom would score his first NHL goal, which also happened to be the game-winning goal of this game.
""It was unbelievable," Holmstrom said. "It's been a long time [coming] and just a great team win as well for us.""- Simon Holmstrom on his first goal
Aho finished the week with one goal and three assists. Aho, who is still young in his career, has now played in 26 games this season, tallying eight points off of three goals and five assists. In his career, he has 89 games played and picked up 26 points off of seven goals and 19 assists. Aho will be a major force on the Islanders' defense in the years to come.