NY Islanders: Three Stars of the Week, 10/30/23- 11/5/23

The Islanders had a bit of a mixed week, with a crucial shutout win sandwiched between two frustrating overtime losses. But they earned four points in three games and remain in good shape at 5-2-3 overall.
Semyon Varlamov shut out his former team in Washington on Thursday night.
Semyon Varlamov shut out his former team in Washington on Thursday night. / Mitchell Leff/GettyImages
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Alex Ovechkin, Semyon Varlamov
Semyon Varlamov has been at the top of his game this season, which has been sorely needed with Ilya Sorokin's surprising struggles. / Patrick Smith/GettyImages

Semyon Varlamov. The Islanders got a much-needed shutout victory in Washington on Thursday night, thanks to the goaltending heroics of Varlamov. Varly- whose four-year, $11M contract extension was widely criticized this offseason for being too long and too expensive- continues to show why having such a secure backup is so important in this league. In particular, the elite duo is the heartbeat of the Islanders, who have built themselves around their strong goaltending.

Ilya Sorokin has been off to a solid start this season, saving 2.7 goals above expected at even strength through seven games this season. However, Varlamov has stolen the show in his three starts, with 6.4 goals saved above expected, two shutouts in three starts, and a .972 (!!) save percentage. Having Sorokin and Varlamov is the key for the Isles as they continue to prove that they are the best goaltending duo in the NHL.


Taylor Hall, Scott Mayfield
A typical New York-Boston showdown. / Bruce Bennett/GettyImages

This upcoming week will see the Isles host the Minnesota Wild, followed by games against the unbelievably good Boston Bruins on the road and Washington Capitals at home before heading on a road trip to Edmonton, Vancouver, Seattle, and Calgary.