It would be fair to say that Jaroslav Halak's 40-save night at MSG could rival even the best Broadway shows playing just a few blocks away. And after make the big stops the Islanders so desperately needed after two periods, he was rewarded by his teammates with a four-goal third period.
Halak made 19 fewer saves in his first start as an Islander on Friday in the team's 5-3 opening night win, but Tuesday's performance was a true test of how well he can do when he is under pressure.
"It's good. That's what he gets paid to do," Islander Coach Jack Capuano said about the goaltender.
That was why Garth Snow brought him here to do for the Islanders. Although Halak allowed two goals in the first two periods, including a soft goal at 6:21 of the first, he made save after save after save when the team really needed it.
"It helps to have Jaro back there," Kyle Okposo said. "He really backstopped us tonight. He kept us in the game and allowed us to get our legs going. Once we did we took the game over."
Halak was quick to take responsibility for the first goal he gave up after the game and credit his teammates for the strong performance he had.
"I'm not happy about the first goal," he said. "Just squeezed through my legs and bad angle shot. That's got to be stopped, but overall, I felt good out there. And our PK tonight did a really good job killing all the penalties. The first two games we gave up four short-handed goals and we all knew we had to get better, be sharper and we were better tonight."
That penalty kill success also came in large part because of Halak, who was put to the test as the Blue Shirts power play had several chances early on. Halak has taken to his new team well and after the game he said he liked the guys he is playing with.
"Great group of guys over here," he said. "Young guys too. I feel like I'm old, but at the same time it's fun. It's fun to be here and it's fun to play with these guys."