After the New York Islanders 4-3 shootout loss to the San Jose Sharks, Kyle Palmieri said he's taking a "fresh look" to the second half of the NHL season. The first half of the year is certainly something to forget about so taking this new and "fresh" approach is a healthy decision for Kyle.
Maybe we should do the same?
Of course, we can still be disappointed that the playoffs just aren't going to happen. Even if the Islanders still have a mathematical chance of making it. But sitting here and just dwelling on that for the next 35 games isn't going to help anyone.
So, let's take a page out of Kyle Palmieri's book and push the goal-posts on three players. Let's re-write the expectations for these three guys. What can we expect from three guys through the rest of the year?
You knew it was going to start with him, right? Through his first 29 games Palmieri had one goal. Just one. That's not what the Islanders thought they would get from Kyle when they offered him $20 million over four years.
The hope, when the Isles signed him, was that he would return to that 20-25 goal player he was in New Jersey. A 20 goal scorer, over a full 82 game season, produces a goal every four games or so (0.244 goals per game). A 25 goal scorer is a goal just about every third game (0.305 goals per game). The expectation for Palmieri should be to fall somewhere in that range; between 0.244 and 0.305 goals per game the rest of the way.
That's 39 games to put up somewhere between ten and 12 goals. He's already got four goals so he's getting there and quickly.
An injury can quickly derail a season. After a long recovery, Pulock is finally back on the ice for the Islanders and taking his spot at the top of the defensive depth chart.
He's only put up five points this year, all assists. Pulock only has two goals in his last 69 games going back to the last regular-season game in 2019-20. That's not normal for Pulock, who's usually popping in 9-10 goals a year. The Isles need him to get back to that type of scoring from the blueline
Can Pulock add another 4-5 goals through the next 35 games? Judging on the first half of his season no, but we're hitting the refresh button and moving the goalposts for him. In this second half, I expect Ryan Pulock to return to his normal self and hit around 0.12 goals per game the rest of the way.
Through 42 games the captain has 13 goals to his name. Good enough for a 25 goal pace. That's about where you'd expect Lee for goals. But his assists are way down with just six. Those 19 points through 42 have him on pace to score 37 points. A low Lee hasn't hit since 2015-16.
He's got to pick it up. I know that Anders Lee is going to score more than he sets up. But single-digit points through half the year isn't enough. My expectation for Anders Lee now is to double his production when it comes to assists. To add 12 helpers through the second half of the year.
I think that's a fair expectation to make for him. To put up 12 helpers the rest of the way while maintaining his goal-scoring pace. That means finishing the year with 25 goals and 43 points. That's still low for him but a fair return considering the start of the year he and the team have had.