3 reasons fans can still be optimistic about the Islanders in Round 1 of the NHL Playoffs

The New York Islanders may be down 2-0 following a crushing loss on Monday to the Carolina Hurricanes, but there is still reason for optimism.
Apr 22, 2024; Raleigh, North Carolina, USA; New York  New York Islanders center Bo Horvat (14)
Apr 22, 2024; Raleigh, North Carolina, USA; New York New York Islanders center Bo Horvat (14) / James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports
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Wow, the New York Islanders did not enjoy a fun second half of what was a complete meltdown on Monday night. While the Isles took a three-goal lead and looked like they would tie the series at one, it wasn’t meant to be, as the Carolina Hurricanes responded with five straight goals. 

To Isles fans everywhere, this one was tough to swallow, and when you look at some of the game’s advanced analytics, they are nothing short of eye-popping. Here are a few of the more discomforting numbers per Natural Stat Trick:

Carolina outshot the Isles in the Corsi For 85 to 20, and as for shots on goal, the final tally was 39 for the Hurricanes and just 12 for New York. The Canes forged 15 high-danger chances while New York had just four, and Carolina led by roughly two-and-a-half in expected goals for. 

Islanders fans have a right to be concerned heading into Game 3

Game 3 takes place back on Long Island tomorrow evening, and in a way, it can be a make-it-or-break-it game for the Islanders. If they win, it’s a series again for at least another few days, but if they lose, the Isles will find themselves in a 3-0 deficit, with little-to-no chance of clawing their way back in. 

Despite the horrific advanced and even basic numbers stemming from Game 2, not only do the Isles still have hope to make things interesting with a win in Game 3, but there are still plenty of reasons for the fans to remain optimistic. 

Sure, things look bleak a day out from Thursday’s game, and it’s also true that the Canes currently hold the momentum. But let’s look at three reasons why, if you’re an Isles fan, there should still be plenty of hope that the team will turn this around starting tomorrow evening.