The Upshot: Oh shoot! The Islanders falter in shootout again; lose 2-1 to Wild

Feb 28, 2023; Saint Paul, Minnesota, USA;  Minnesota Wild center Frederick Gaudreau (89) scores on
Feb 28, 2023; Saint Paul, Minnesota, USA; Minnesota Wild center Frederick Gaudreau (89) scores on / Bruce Fedyck-USA TODAY Sports

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The Isles' issues in the shootout continued as the Minnesota Wild extended their point streak to seven games with a 2-1 shootout win over the Islanders at Xcel Energy Center on Tuesday night. Filip Gustavsson continued his remarkable season, stopping 39 shots for the win, including five saves in overtime. Ryan Reaves scored his first of the season for the Wild (34-21-6), who got the shootout winner from Frederick Gaudreau. For New York, Josh Bailey scored at 14:15 of the first period to open the scoring, and Ilya Sorokin had 30 saves in the loss for the Islanders (31-25-8), who have points in four of five (3-1-1).


A lot went right in this game. The islanders had more shots on goal, more scoring chances, and more high-danger chances than Minnesota. They were even the better team in overtime, getting five shots on goal, including a pair of great chances for Zach Parise to end it against his former team. They just couldn't beat Gustavsson, who continues to be on the top of his game, for the second time.

"We played good. Really good. Lots of chances, said head coach Lane Lambert after the game. "Great structure. Good road game. Total compete. Really a fantastic game. It's a shame we didn't get two points. We deserved it."


We can talk about the shootout, but what's there left to say? The Islanders are now a pitiful 1-for-14 on the season in the skills competition that decides the extra point. Of the three skaters that took their chance on Tuesday night, only Simon Holmstrom tried to make a move, having the puck slide of his stick blade. Bo Horvat and Kyle Palmieri are both shooters, and did just that, but didn't make the goalie move much to make the save.

Meanwhile, what really went wrong was the turnover by Noah Dobson that led to Ryan Reaves' first goal in a Wild uniform and his first since April 27, 2022, when he was a member of the Rangers. '

Dobson, not under much pressure, blindly clears the zone toward the middle of the ice, where it is easily intercepted, leading to a two-on-two rush and the Reaves goal when he batted the Sorokin rebound out of the air and into the net. It's plays like this that, despite all of Dobson's offensive skills, keep him from getting to the next caliber of NHL defenseman.


When the Islanders acquired Bo Horvat, they were getting a 30+ goal-scorer, but they were also getting an elite face-off man. Horvat was incredible in the dot on Tuesday, winning 9-of-11 faceoffs for a win percentage of 81.82%.


This technically happened before the game, but Islanders superfan Frankie Borrelli wanted to let everyone know exactly what the Islanders were getting by trading for Pierre Engvall from the Toronto Maple Leafs. We'll see what type of skills he has on the ice come Saturday.


The Islanders have three games off before their next game on Saturday afternoon when they host the Detroit Red Wings at UBS Arena.