The Upshot: The NY Islanders play a losing hand in Vegas; fall 5-2 to Golden Knights

Jan 6, 2024; Las Vegas, Nevada, USA; Vegas Golden Knights goaltender Logan Thompson (36) makes a
Jan 6, 2024; Las Vegas, Nevada, USA; Vegas Golden Knights goaltender Logan Thompson (36) makes a / Stephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sports
facebooktwitterreddit

HOW IT HAPPENED

Jack Eichel scored twice, including a power-play goal in the third period, as the Vegas Golden Knights defeated the New York Islanders 5-2 on Saturday night at T-Mobile Arena. Nicolas Roy also had a pair of goals for Vegas, who had lost six of their previous seven games. Pavel Dorofeyev also scored, and Logan Thompson made 28 saves in the win. Mathew Barzal and Matt Martin had the Islanders' goals, while Ilya Sorokin made 25 stops in the loss. The Isles finish their four-game road trip with a 1-2-1 record.

WHAT WENT RIGHT

Fans watching at home had a nice surprise coming back from a commercial break when they learned that referees had looked back at play before the whistle, which showed that Mathew Barzal had scored by banking a shot off of the left arm of goaltender Logan Thompson that deflected into the roof of the net. Barzal reacted immediately that it was a goal, but play went on until the next whistle.

With the goal, Barzal is on now pace to establish career highs in goals and points this season, surpassing his totals from his Calder Trophy-winning campaign (22-63—85 in 82 GP in 2017-18).

WHAT WENT WRONG

After Nicolas Roy scored at 18:41 to give Vegas a 3-1 lead, Lane Lambert elected to challenge for goalie interference on the play. The replays showed that the Isles had a case, as some contact was made with Ilya Sorokin inside the blue crease, but after a lengthy review, the referees announced that the call on the ice stood, which meant the Isles were assessed a delay of game penalty.

Following intermission, Jack Eichel scored his second goal of the game on the power play 31 seconds into the third period for a 4-1 Vegas lead.

STATS OF THE GAME

Per NHL PR, Mathew Barzal (11-29—40 in 38 GP) collected his 40th point of the season in his 38th game. The only other Islanders players in the previous 25 years to reach the mark in 38 or fewer games are Josh Bailey (33 GP in 2017-18), John Tavares (33 GP in 2017-18), and Alexei Yashin (37 GP in 2001-02).

SOCIAL MEDIA MOMENT OF THE GAME

Casey Cizikas missed on a hit and found glass leaving him shaken and bloodied, but he didn't miss a shift. Zeeker returned to the ice with blood dripping down from his brow and down his cheek leading to Mathew Barzal calling him a maniac during the first intermission.

WHAT'S NEXT

The Islanders return home to UBS Arena on Tuesday night to host the Vancouver Canucks.

Face-off is set for 7:30 PM EST.