The Upshot: NY Islanders dominated in 6-2 loss to Boston Bruins
HOW IT HAPPENED
Playing for the first time in 17 games, Jake Debrusk returned to the lineup and led the Boston Bruins to a 6-2 win over the New York Islanders at TD Garden on Saturday. Debrusk had a goal and assist in his first action since the NHL Winter Classic at Fenway Park on Jan. 2. Nick Foligno also had a goal and an assist, Trent Frederic scored twice, and Linus Ullmark had 26 saves for Boston's third consecutive win, improving their record to an NHL best 42-8-5.
New York forward Mathew Barzal exited the game at the 6:05 mark of the first period and did not return. Kyle Palmieri and Matt Martin had the goals for the Islanders (28-24-7), while Semyon Varlamov made 21 saves in the loss.
WHAT WENT RIGHT
Kyle Palmieri, wearing the "A" with Josh Bailey out of the lineup, had a very strong game, scoring the team's first goal of the game. If Barzal misses time, you could see Palmieri get shifts with Bo Horvat and Anders Lee. "We've got to turn the page, we don't have an option, we're in the chase for a playoff spot" Palmieri said. "We've got an opportunity to kind of turn out a pretty good weekend with a win on Monday. Leave this one in the past and it is what it is. Whether it was 2-1, 5-1, 10-1, it's a loss."
WHAT WENT WRONG
A lot. Even before Barzal left the game in the first period, the Islanders were having difficulty generating much against the Bruins and were unable to carry momentum from the previous night's comeback victory over the Penguins.
A questionable penalty to Casey Cizikas set up Boston's first goal on the power-play as Debrusk went five-hole on a backhand. It was the start of "just one of those nights" for Semyon Varlamov, who has started all three games against Boston this season.
STATS OF THE GAME
Per Eric Hornick in The Skinny, Brock Nelson saw his career-high twelve-game point streak end; it matches John Tavares (2012) and Mark Parrish (2001) for the longest Islander point streak in the 21st century. Noah Dobson has a career-best five-game assist streak (1-6-7).
SOCIAL MEDIA MOMENT OF THE GAME
There wasn't much going on during the game, so here's a picture of Paul Rever's tombstone as taken by The Athletic's Kevin Kurz on his afternoon walk through Boston as he awaited puck drop.
The Islanders return to the ice in Pittsburgh to take on the Penguins on Monday night.
Face-off is at 7 p.m.