Mar 8, 2018; Ottawa, Ontario, CAN; Ottawa Senators defenseman Erik Karlsson (65) skates with the puck in the third period against the Buffalo Sabres at Canadian Tire Centre. Mandatory Credit: Marc DesRosiers-USA TODAY (Marc DesRosiers)
Mar 8, 2018; Ottawa, Ontario, CAN; Ottawa Senators defenseman Erik Karlsson (65) skates with the puck in the third period against the Buffalo Sabres at Canadian Tire Centre. Mandatory Credit: Marc DesRosiers-USA TODAY (Marc DesRosiers)

After the gut-punch of the loss of John Tavares on Sunday, anyone could understand the desire to rebound. Who among us hasn't been dumped, only to dream of bouncing back with someone just as dazzling?

Otherwise, count me in the minority when it comes to clamoring for the Islanders to make a trade for Erik Karlsson. The Islanders will inquire, and would be right to investigate, but it is not the right move at this time for the club. The reasons...

The Price

Even if the Islanders agree to take on the annual $7.25 million cap hit of the inconsistent Bobby Ryan for the next four seasons, you'd have to believe the price for the Islanders starts with their first pick in 2019. Ottawa would insist on it being unprotected, and the Islanders would be no lock - yes, even with Karlsson - of being a very good team. Karlsson's brilliance certainly wasn't enough to guarantee that for the Senators, who failed to qualify for the playoffs three of the last five seasons.

From there, the Senators - although, to be fair, you never know about the NHL's most troubled franchise - could insist on receiving one of the Islanders' highly-praised picks from the 2018 draft: Oliver Wahlstrom or Noah Dobson. In the mess Ottawa is in, it's doubtful they view Joshua Ho-Sang as a must-have piece. Kieffer Bellows? I'm told most scouts like his scoring touch, but don't view him as a blue-chipper.

If you didn't like the price St. Louis paid for Ryan O'Reilly, a ransom that Lou Lamoriello rightfully declined to meet despite the need for another strong center, chances are you'll get sticker-shock on the cost for Karlsson. Ottawa will get teams in a bidding war for Karlsson. Some borderline contenders believe he's the final piece for a legitimate run at a Stanley Cup. The Senators need to make a statement with this trade. They view it as their launchpad to a major rebuilding program. They will try to get the assets the Islanders didn't get for Tavares.

The Goal

Lamoriello's eyes are on the Stanley Cup. His job is not to plug the hole in the Country's heart after the departure of Tavares. He does not have a mission of making the team fun to watch as it fights for a playoff berth the next two years.

If the Islanders add Karlsson to the current squad, and even if they acquire a solid goaltender while the defense improves under Barry Trotz - let's face it, it will improve because there's no way it could be worse - are the Islanders are a Cup contender any time soon? No, they're not. They're a playoff team, probably.

The Hurt 

Karlsson has a year left on his contract, but the Senators are shopping him now and will give some prospective trade partners the opportunity to discuss a long-term extension with him. So, in reality, Karlsson is an unrestricted free agent now. He and his agent will have a lot of say in what team he is traded to. Karlsson can pick where he'd like to play this season and the following eight.

While the hysteria over #KarlssonWatch inevitably gets out of hand across several markets this month, it should be noted that as an all-zone player, he is not Denis Potvin, Niklas Lidstrom or Scott Niedermayer. However, this is a No. 1 defenseman in the prime of his career, a two-time Norris Trophy winner, a future Hall of Famer who is exhilarating to watch. He displayed remarkable guts by playing through significant injuries as the Sens reached the Eastern Conference Final in 2017.

He would make any team better, if the price was right.

And with that, we go back to reality. The Islanders play in two arenas and have yet to place a shovel in the ground for their future permanent home. Despite the promise that Lamoriello and Trotz bring in the front office and behind the bench, no one would rank the current edition of the Islanders among the top 12 teams currently in the NHL. Most would not have them in the top 20 or 25.

Would the New York Islanders be anywhere near the top of Karlsson's genuine wish list of destinations at this time?

Lamoriello should make the phone call and inquire about the trade price for Karlsson. He wouldn't be doing his job if he didn't at least inquire. If Lamoriello makes the bold move for a reasonable price, and gets Karlsson's name on a long-term contract, it would be cause for celebration.

But that sounds like a lot of hopeful thinking. While the Islanders are in dire need of defense and goaltending, the last thing they need is a desperate, costly move, or more hopes dashed.


Tags: John Tavares, Josh Ho-Sang, Chris Botta
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 (Dennis Schneidler)
(Dennis Schneidler)

By bringing in one of the top sports executives ever and the most recent Stanley Cup-winning coach, the Islanders have turned the page on the John Tavares era and approach Monday's NHL trade deadline atop the Metropolitan Division.

But if the Isles' want to make a Stanley Cup run, Lou Lamoriello will have to bring in at least one skilled forward who can score before the NHL trade deadline passes Monday at 3 p.m. 

Matt Duchene is no longer an option after Columbus acquired him from Ottawa on Friday. Plenty of good options remain on the market, some who will cost more in assets than others. Here's a look at players who can help the Islanders down the stretch and in the playoffs:

Tags: Ilya Kovalchuk, Kevin Hayes, Mathew Barzal, Mats Zuccarello
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Feb 16, 2019; Brooklyn, NY, USA; Edmonton Oilers center Connor McDavid (97) plays the puck against New York Islanders defensemen Ryan Pulock (6) and Adam Pelech (3) during the first period at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Feb 16, 2019; Brooklyn, NY, USA; Edmonton Oilers center Connor McDavid (97) plays the puck against New York Islanders defensemen Ryan Pulock (6) and Adam Pelech (3) during the first period at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

The NHL's Department of Player Safety announced Friday that Oilers star Connor McDavid was suspended two games for an illegal check to the head of Islanders defenseman Nick Leddy during the Isles' 4-3 overtime loss Thursday in Edmonton.

The hit came with 2:28 left in the first period and earned McDavid a minor penalty. It's the first suspension of McDavid's career. The Department of Player Safety said the head was the main point of contact and the hit was "avoidable." 

Leddy cleared concussion protocol and returned to the game. 

Tags: Nick Leddy
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Danny Abriano, SNY.tv | Twitter |

Some of the best movies ever -- including some of the best sports movies ever -- have been filmed in and/or take place in New York. Here is our ranking of the 10 best...

10. Above The Rim (1994)

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Feb 21, 2019; Edmonton, Alberta, CAN; New York Islanders goaltender Robin Lehner (40) makes a save against Edmonton Oilers forward Ryan Nugent-Hopkins (93) during the first period at Rogers Place. Mandatory Credit: Perry Nelson-USA TODAY Sports (Perry Nelson)
Feb 21, 2019; Edmonton, Alberta, CAN; New York Islanders goaltender Robin Lehner (40) makes a save against Edmonton Oilers forward Ryan Nugent-Hopkins (93) during the first period at Rogers Place. Mandatory Credit: Perry Nelson-USA TODAY Sports (Perry Nelson)

The Islanders led by one after a wild first period but they let their lead slip away late in regulation befor Edmonton star Connor McDavid scored in overtime to hand the Isles a 4-3 loss. The Isles allowed at least four goals in consecutive games for the first time since Nov. 18 and 21. Their Metropolitan Division lead is two points after Washington defeated Toronto Thursday.  >> Box score


First period:

  • 5:12 EDM Leon Draisaitl (Power Play;) Assists: Connor McDavid, Ryan Nugent-Hopkins
  • 6:30 EDM Sam Gagner; Assists: Tobias Rieder
  • 12:57 NYI Anders Lee; Assists: Johnny Boychuk, Brock Nelson
  • 19:21 NYI Brock Nelson (Power Play;) Assists: Jordan Eberle, Ryan Pulock
  • 19:49 NYI Cal Clutterbuck (Power Play;) Assists: Ryan Pulock, Devon Toews
Tags: Edmonton Oilers
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New York Islanders head coach Barry Trotz looks on from behind the players bench against the Carolina Hurricanes at PNC Arena. (James Guillory/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Islanders head coach Barry Trotz looks on from behind the players bench against the Carolina Hurricanes at PNC Arena. (James Guillory/USA TODAY Sports)

The Metropolitan Division-leading Islanders arrive in Edmonton after dropping a 4-2 clash with the Calgary Flames on Wednesday night, which snapped a two-game winning streak.

"Too many passengers," fumed Islanders head coach Barry Trotz, who gave his squad a "F" grade after the loss.

After a dismal performance in Calgary, it's possible both Andrew Ladd and Thomas Hickey will make their return from injuries. >> Read More

Tags: Edmonton Oilers
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Feb 20, 2019; Calgary, Alberta, CAN; Calgary Flames center Sean Monahan (23) and New York Islanders defenseman Johnny Boychuk (55) fight for position in front of New York Islanders goaltender Thomas Greiss (1) during the third period at Scotiabank Saddledome. Mandatory Credit: Sergei Belski-USA TODAY Sports  (Sergei Belski)
Feb 20, 2019; Calgary, Alberta, CAN; Calgary Flames center Sean Monahan (23) and New York Islanders defenseman Johnny Boychuk (55) fight for position in front of New York Islanders goaltender Thomas Greiss (1) during the third period at Scotiabank Saddledome. Mandatory Credit: Sergei Belski-USA TODAY Sports (Sergei Belski)

Anders Lee tied it up at two to begin the third period, but the Flames netted two unanswered to send the Isles home with a loss, 4-2, in Calgary. >> Box score


First period:

  • 5:00 CAL Mikael Backlund; Assists: Michael Frolik
  • 15:59 CAL Travis Hamonic; Assists: Mikael Backlund, Elias Lindholm
Tags: Calgary Flames
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Jan 18, 2019; Raleigh, NC, USA; Ottawa Senators center Matt Duchene (95) watches the play against the Carolina Hurricanes at PNC Arena. The Ottawa Senators defeated the Carolina Hurricanes 4-1. Mandatory Credit: James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports (James Guillory)
Jan 18, 2019; Raleigh, NC, USA; Ottawa Senators center Matt Duchene (95) watches the play against the Carolina Hurricanes at PNC Arena. The Ottawa Senators defeated the Carolina Hurricanes 4-1. Mandatory Credit: James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports (James Guillory)

The Islanders' surprising season sees them leading the Metropolitan Division with 24 games remaining, and with the trade deadline less than a week away they have been linked to one of the biggest names on the trade market.

In his weekly 31 Thoughts column for Sportsnet, Elliotte Friedman writes that the Islanders are one of two "stealth desination(s)" for Ottawa's Matt Duchene along with Calgary. Columbus and Nashville are the teams primarily in on Duchene, who has 27 goals and 31 assists in 50 games and is an unrestricted free agent this summer.

Tags: Ilya Kovalchuk, Ottawa Senators
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Feb 16, 2019; Brooklyn, NY, USA; New York Islanders defenseman Ryan Pulock (6) celebrates his goal against the Edmonton Oilers with defenseman Devon Toews (25) and left wing Anthony Beauvillier (18) during the second period at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Feb 16, 2019; Brooklyn, NY, USA; New York Islanders defenseman Ryan Pulock (6) celebrates his goal against the Edmonton Oilers with defenseman Devon Toews (25) and left wing Anthony Beauvillier (18) during the second period at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

Ryan Pulock jump-started the Islanders Saturday night with a power-play goal roughly three minutes into the game and they never looked back, defeating the Edmonton Oilers, 5-2. >> Box score


First period:

  • 3:02 NYI Ryan Pulock (Power Play); Assists: Devon Toews, Josh Bailey
  • 13:30 NYI Valtteri Filppula; Assists: Nick Leddy, Johnny Boychuk
  • 19:57 EDM Ryan Nugent-Hopkins; Assists: Kris Russell, Tobias Rieder
Tags: Edmonton Oilers
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Dec 1, 2018; Uniondale, NY, USA; General view of the opening puck drop between the New York Islanders and the Columbus Blue Jackets during the first period at Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Dec 1, 2018; Uniondale, NY, USA; General view of the opening puck drop between the New York Islanders and the Columbus Blue Jackets during the first period at Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

The Islanders have been splitting their home games this season between Nassau Coliseum and Barclays Center, and if they advance past the first round of the playoffs, the same will be true for the postseason.

On Friday, the club announced that if it makes the playoffs that first-round home games will be played at Nassau Coliseum. However, if the Islanders advance past the first round, they will play the rest of their home games at Barclays Center.

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Feb 14, 2019; Columbus, OH, USA; The New York Islanders celebrate after defeating the Columbus Blue Jackets at Nationwide Arena. Mandatory Credit: Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports (Aaron Doster)
Feb 14, 2019; Columbus, OH, USA; The New York Islanders celebrate after defeating the Columbus Blue Jackets at Nationwide Arena. Mandatory Credit: Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports (Aaron Doster)

Casey Cizikas was named the first star of the game after netting two goal on the Islanders' road to a 3-0 win over the Blue Jackets on Thursday night. >> Box score


First period:

  • 7:06 NYI Casey Cizikas; Assists: Cal Clutterbuck, Thomas Greiss
Tags: Columbus Blue Jackets
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 (Kevin Hoffman)
(Kevin Hoffman)

The Islanders were riding a three-game winning streak heading into Buffalo, but they were outdone by Sabres Tuesday night, 3-1. Johan Larsson scored with 2:25 remaining to ice it. >> Box score


First period:

  • 16:25 BUF Jeff Skinner; Assists: Jack Eichel
  • 19:37 NYI Casey Cizikas; Assists: Matt Martin, Cal Clutterbuck
Tags: Buffalo Sabres
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Dec 31, 2018; Buffalo, NY, USA; New York Islanders left wing Anders Lee (27) takes a shot on goal as Buffalo Sabres defenseman Zach Bogosian (4) looks to block it during the first period at KeyBank Center. Mandatory Credit: Timothy T. Ludwig-USA TODAY Sports (Timothy T. Ludwig)
Dec 31, 2018; Buffalo, NY, USA; New York Islanders left wing Anders Lee (27) takes a shot on goal as Buffalo Sabres defenseman Zach Bogosian (4) looks to block it during the first period at KeyBank Center. Mandatory Credit: Timothy T. Ludwig-USA TODAY Sports (Timothy T. Ludwig)

The New York Islanders have followed up one of their hottest months in years with an almost identical performance. But the Buffalo Sabres have spent the last two months undoing the margin for error they built up during a franchise record-tying 10-game winning streak.

Two teams on the opposite ends of the Eastern Conference playoff race will face each other Tuesday night, when the Sabres host the Islanders.

Both teams were off Monday after playing Sunday, when the Islanders earned their third straight win by edging the visiting Minnesota Wild, 2-1, and the host Sabres fell to the Winnipeg Jets, 3-1.

Tags: Buffalo Sabres
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New York Islanders defenseman Devon Toews celebrates with teammates after scoring a goal against the Minnesota Wild during the second period at Barclays Center. (Dennis Schneidler/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Islanders defenseman Devon Toews celebrates with teammates after scoring a goal against the Minnesota Wild during the second period at Barclays Center. (Dennis Schneidler/USA TODAY Sports)

Devon Toews scored the tie-breaking power-play goal early in the second period as the Islanders beat the Minnesota Wild 2-1 on Sunday at Barclays Center. >> Box score


First period:

  • 14:05 NYI Anthony Beauvillier; Assists: Valtteri Filppula, Leo Komarov

Second period:

  • 0:38 MIN Mikael Granlund (power play); Assists: Jason Zucker, Zach Parise
  • 2:01 NYI Devon Toews (power play); Assists: Ryan Pulock, Josh Bailey
Tags: Minnesota Wild
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New York Islanders head coach Barry Trotz looks on from behind the players bench against the Carolina Hurricanes at PNC Arena. (James Guillory/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Islanders head coach Barry Trotz looks on from behind the players bench against the Carolina Hurricanes at PNC Arena. (James Guillory/USA TODAY Sports)

The Minnesota Wild and New York Islanders were separated by fewer than 20 miles Saturday afternoon, when the Wild served notice they are not ready to fall out of the Western Conference postseason race.

Meanwhile, the Islanders offered another reminder they need to be taken seriously as a legitimate contender to make a deep playoff run in the Eastern Conference.

The Wild and Islanders will look to build on Saturday's momentum on Sunday afternoon, when New York hosts Minnesota at Barclays Center.

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Feb 5, 2019; Boston, MA, USA; New York Islanders defenseman Ryan Pulock (6) takes a shot on goal during the third period against the Boston Bruins at TD Garden. Mandatory Credit: Greg M. Cooper-USA TODAY Sports (Greg M. Cooper)
Feb 5, 2019; Boston, MA, USA; New York Islanders defenseman Ryan Pulock (6) takes a shot on goal during the third period against the Boston Bruins at TD Garden. Mandatory Credit: Greg M. Cooper-USA TODAY Sports (Greg M. Cooper)

Ryan Pulock's second goal of the game sent the Islanders home with a win, as New York beat the Avalanche 4-3 in overtime. >> Box score


First period:

  • 10:19 COL Carl Soderberg; Assists: Erik Johnson, Matt Nieto
Tags: Colorado Avalanche, Josh Bailey, Ryan Pulock
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Jan 12, 2019; Brooklyn, NY, USA; New York Islanders right wing Jordan Eberle (7) shoots against New York Rangers goalie Alexandar Georgiev (40) in front of defenseman Brady Skjei (76) during the second period at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports  (Brad Penner)
Jan 12, 2019; Brooklyn, NY, USA; New York Islanders right wing Jordan Eberle (7) shoots against New York Rangers goalie Alexandar Georgiev (40) in front of defenseman Brady Skjei (76) during the second period at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

The Colorado Avalanche are coming off their fifth straight loss, this time to the defending champion Washington Capitals on Thursday. Now they get to face the man who led Washington to the elusive Stanley Cup last year when they visit the New York Islanders on Saturday afternoon.

Barry Trotz stunned some when three days after the Capitals beat the Vegas Golden Knights to win the title he was hired by the Islanders to be their head coach. It looks like New York made a shrewd move. The Islanders (31-16-6) sit atop the Metropolitan Division, two points ahead of Washington and winners of seven of their last 10.

 

Tags: Colorado Avalanche
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 (Ed Mulholland)
(Ed Mulholland)

Josh Bailey scored the game winning goal in the fourth round of the shootout as the New York Islanders capped a 2-1 win over the New Jersey Devils on Thursday night at Prudential Center with a four-game season series sweep. >> Box score


First period:

  • 5:32 NJD Kevin Rooney; Assists: Kurtis Gabriel, Jesper Bratt
  • 13:43 NYI Mathew Barzal; Assists: Ryan Pulock, Brock Nelson
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Nov 3, 2018; Brooklyn, NY, USA; New Jersey Devils center Nico Hischier (13) and New York Islanders right wing Cal Clutterbuck (15) fight for the puck during the second period at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Nov 3, 2018; Brooklyn, NY, USA; New Jersey Devils center Nico Hischier (13) and New York Islanders right wing Cal Clutterbuck (15) fight for the puck during the second period at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

The New York Islanders are surprisingly sitting atop the Metropolitan Division, ahead of the defending Stanley Cup-champion Washington Capitals and Sidney Crosby-led Pittsburgh Penguins in the hotly contested division.

Not only are they in a good perch, the Islanders (30-16-6, 66 points) have lost one game in regulation in their last nine outings (6-1-2).

So, you'd think they'd be feeling good about themselves these days. Guess again. >> Read More

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Feb 5, 2019; Boston, MA, USA; Boston Bruins center Patrice Bergeron (37) scores a goal on New York Islanders goaltender Robin Lehner (40) during the second period at TD Garden. Mandatory Credit: Greg M. Cooper-USA TODAY Sports (Greg M. Cooper)
Feb 5, 2019; Boston, MA, USA; Boston Bruins center Patrice Bergeron (37) scores a goal on New York Islanders goaltender Robin Lehner (40) during the second period at TD Garden. Mandatory Credit: Greg M. Cooper-USA TODAY Sports (Greg M. Cooper)

A Bruins goal at 6:34 of the third period broke a 1-1 deadlock before an empty-netter sealed the 3-1 loss for the Islanders. >> Box score


First period:

  • N/A

Second period:

  • 2:32 BOS Patrice Bergeron; Assists: David Pastrnak, Brad Marchand
  • 16:40 NYI Jordan Eberle (Power Play); Assists: Mat Barzal, Brock Nelson
Tags: Boston Bruins
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Nov 29, 2018; Boston, MA, USA; New York Islanders center Casey Cizikas (53) handles the puck against the Boston Bruins during the second period at TD Garden. Mandatory Credit: Paul Rutherford-USA TODAY Sports (Paul Rutherford)
Nov 29, 2018; Boston, MA, USA; New York Islanders center Casey Cizikas (53) handles the puck against the Boston Bruins during the second period at TD Garden. Mandatory Credit: Paul Rutherford-USA TODAY Sports (Paul Rutherford)

Few could have imagined last summer that a February meeting between the New York Islanders and Boston Bruins could serve as a potential playoff preview. But the two teams may be sizing each other up for postseason series on Tuesday night, when the Islanders visit the Bruins.

Both teams ended losing streaks in their most recent games. The Islanders snapped a two-game skid by coming back from a third-period deficit to beat the visiting Los Angeles Kings 4-2 on Saturday night. The Bruins broke a three-game drought Sunday when David Krejci scored the only goal in the second period of a 1-0 win over the host Washington Capitals.

Tags: Boston Bruins
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New York Islanders center Casey Cizikas celebrates his goal against the Los Angeles Kings with teammates during the first period at Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum. (Brad Penner/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Islanders center Casey Cizikas celebrates his goal against the Los Angeles Kings with teammates during the first period at Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum. (Brad Penner/USA TODAY Sports)

The Islanders scored three unanswered goals in the final 6:14 of the third period as they beat the Los Angeles Kings 4-2 on Saturday at Nassau Coliseum. >> Box score


Third period:

  • 13:15 LA Ilya Kovalchuk; Assists: Dustin Brown, Anze Kopitar
  • 13:46 NYI Mathew Barzal; Assists: Ryan Pulock, Josh Bailey
  • 17:37 NYI Michael Dal Colle; Assists: Ryan Pulock, Leo Komarov
  • 18:29 NYI Brock Nelson (ENG); Assists: Ryan Pulock, Cal Clutterbuck
Tags: Los Angeles Kings
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It was a battle between goalies on Friday night at the Coliseum, as the Islanders fell to the Lightning 1-0 in a shootout. >> Box score

Tags: Tampa Bay Lightning
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Nov 8, 2018; Tampa, FL, USA; New York Islanders right wing Josh Bailey (12) is congratulated by teammates after scoring a goal against the Tampa Bay Lightning during the third period at Amalie Arena. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports (Kim Klement)
Nov 8, 2018; Tampa, FL, USA; New York Islanders right wing Josh Bailey (12) is congratulated by teammates after scoring a goal against the Tampa Bay Lightning during the third period at Amalie Arena. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports (Kim Klement)

By the time faceoff arrives Friday night, the New York Islanders will have waited nearly 10 days to play a hockey game. The Tampa Bay Lighting will have waited even longer for a rare chance at revenge.

The two division leaders in the Eastern Conference are scheduled to meet Friday night, when the Islanders return from the All-Star Break and their subsequent bye week by hosting the Lightning at Nassau Coliseum.

The Islanders have been off since Jan. 22, when they went into the break with a 3-2 shootout loss to the host Chicago Blackhawks. The visiting Lightning returned to action Wednesday, when they fell to the Pittsburgh Penguins, 4-2.

Tags: Tampa Bay Lightning
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 (Kyle Terada)
(Kyle Terada)

Henrik Lundqvist was not the only New York area athlete to impress at the NHL All-Star Game on Saturday. 

Islanders' Mathew Barzal scored two goals and finished the day with four assists while Devils' Kyle Palmieri also had a goal and an assist in the two games they both played for Team Metropolitan, which won the 3-on-3 style tournament with a 10-5 victory over the Central. 

Barzal and Palmieri both scored in the first period of the NHL All-Star Game final, with Barzal setting the tone with a wrister 22 seconds into the game. 

Tags: Mathew Barzal
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Home is where the Islanders are? 00:00:53
The first question at Gary Bettman?s press conference was about the Islanders and their arena for potential playoff games.

The Islanders have turned their franchise around exactly the way they wanted to this season. From ownership to coaching to renewed success on the ice, the Isles went into the All-Star breakare sitting at the top of the Metropolitan Division at 29-15-5 with playoff hopes in sight. 

But that's the big question: Where will the Islanders play their home playoff games?

During the NHL All-Star press conference, NHL commissioner Gary Bettman addressed the situation, saying the league would ultimately have the final say on where New York will play.

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Toronto Maple Leafs forward John Tavares battles for the puck against New York Islanders defenseman Nick Leddy in the second period at Scotiabank Arena. (Dan Hamilton/USA TODAY Sports)
Toronto Maple Leafs forward John Tavares battles for the puck against New York Islanders defenseman Nick Leddy in the second period at Scotiabank Arena. (Dan Hamilton/USA TODAY Sports)

John Tavares controversially left the Islanders in the offseason to sign a seven-year, $77 million deal with the Toronto Maple Leafs, his hometown team.

But at the All-Star break, his Maple Leafs trail the Islanders in the Eastern Conference standings by one point.

"They're having a tremendous season. Obviously, it's a complete 180 on the defensive side," Tavares said, according to Newsday's Mark Herrmann. "Goaltending has been a big part of that, but just not giving up a whole lot defensively and it's leading to a lot of success, a lot of wins."

Tags: Anders Lee, John Tavares, Mathew Barzal, Toronto Maple Leafs
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Jan 22, 2019; Chicago, IL, USA; Chicago Blackhawks left wing Alex DeBrincat (12) tries to score against the New York Islanders during the second period at United Center. Mandatory Credit: Kamil Krzaczynski-USA TODAY Sports (Kamil Krzaczynski)
Jan 22, 2019; Chicago, IL, USA; Chicago Blackhawks left wing Alex DeBrincat (12) tries to score against the New York Islanders during the second period at United Center. Mandatory Credit: Kamil Krzaczynski-USA TODAY Sports (Kamil Krzaczynski)

The Islanders were unable to hold onto two separate one-goal leads as they fall to the Chicago Blackhawks in a shootout, 3-2, to end a five-game winning streak. >> Box score


First period:

  • 2:19 NYI Valtteri Filppula
Tags: Chicago Blackhawks, Mathew Barzal
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New York Islanders right wing Cal Clutterbuck celebrates the second of his two first period goals against the Anaheim Ducks with teammates during the first period at Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum. (Brad Penner/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Islanders right wing Cal Clutterbuck celebrates the second of his two first period goals against the Anaheim Ducks with teammates during the first period at Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum. (Brad Penner/USA TODAY Sports)

Cal Clutterbuck scored two goals in the first period to lead the Islanders to a 3-0 win over the Anaheim Ducks on Sunday at Nassau Coliseum. >> Box score


First period:

  • 4:50 NYI Cal Clutterbuck (power play); Assists: Josh Bailey, Anthony Beauvillier
  • 9:56 NYI Cal Clutterbuck; Assist: Adam Pelech
Tags: Anaheim Ducks, Cal Clutterbuck
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 (Geoff Burke)
(Geoff Burke)

The New York Islanders and Anaheim Ducks were traveling the most dissimilar paths in the NHL for most of the last month. But the two teams will both carry winning streaks into action Sunday afternoon, when the Islanders host the Ducks at Nassau Coliseum in Uniondale, N.Y.

The Islanders were off Saturday after earning their fourth straight win Friday night, a 2-0 victory over the visiting Washington Capitals. The Ducks will be completing a back-to-back Eastern Conference swing after edging the host New Jersey Devils, 3-2, on Saturday afternoon.

The win Friday was the 14th in the last 17 games dating back to Dec. 15 for the Islanders, who at least momentarily moved into first place in the Metropolitan Division by virtue of beating the Capitals. New York, which hasn't won a division title since the 1987-88 season, has been in first place this late in a season just twice since the 1990-91 campaign.

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 (Geoff Burke)
(Geoff Burke)

The Islanders had a slow start after two periods with no score, then jumped ahead on Josh Bailey's 11th goal of the season to defeat the Capitals 2-0 at Capital One Arena on Friday night. >> Box score


First period:

  • N/A
Tags: Cal Clutterbuck, Josh Bailey, Washington Capitals
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 (Andy Marlin)
(Andy Marlin)

The Islanders jumped to an early lead and didn't look back, defeating the Devils 4-1 at The Coliseum on Thursday night. >> Box score


First period:

  • 5:48 NYI Anders Lee; Assists: Nick Leddy, Jordan Eberle
  • 9:19 NYI Michael Dal Colle; Assists: Scott Mayfield, Leo Komarov
  • 15:12 NYI Jordan Eberle (Power Play); Assists: Nick Leddy, Brock Nelson
Tags: Anders Lee, Josh Bailey
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Jan 15, 2019; Brooklyn, NY, USA; New York Islanders center Valtteri Filppula (51) is congratulated by center Mathew Barzal (13) after scoring the game winning goal against the St. Louis Blues during overtime at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports (Andy Marlin)
Jan 15, 2019; Brooklyn, NY, USA; New York Islanders center Valtteri Filppula (51) is congratulated by center Mathew Barzal (13) after scoring the game winning goal against the St. Louis Blues during overtime at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports (Andy Marlin)

The Islanders picked up a big two points with an overtime 2-1 win over the Blues on Tuesday night. >> Box score


First period:

  • 8:43 NYI Jordan Eberle; Assists: Anders Lee
Tags: St. Louis Blues
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New York Islanders defenseman Devon Toews celebrates his goal against the Tampa Bay Lightning during the first period at Barclays Center. (Dennis Schneidler/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Islanders defenseman Devon Toews celebrates his goal against the Tampa Bay Lightning during the first period at Barclays Center. (Dennis Schneidler/USA TODAY Sports)

Rookie Devon Toews was among three different Islanders to score in the first period en route to a 5-1 win over the Tampa Bay Lightning at Barclays Center. >> Box score


First period:

  • 1:21 NYI Brock Nelson (power play); Assists: Jordan Eberle, Mathew Barzal
  • 4:27 NYI Cal Clutterbuck; Assists: Matt Martin, Casey Cizikas
  • 4:43 NYI Devon Toews
Tags: Tampa Bay Lightning
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Dec 28, 2018; Brooklyn, NY, USA; New York Islanders center Mathew Barzal (13) celebrates his go-ahead goal against the Ottawa Senators during the third period at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Dec 28, 2018; Brooklyn, NY, USA; New York Islanders center Mathew Barzal (13) celebrates his go-ahead goal against the Ottawa Senators during the third period at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

"What a difference a year makes."

The old adage seemingly applies to the New York Islanders' turnaround this season.

The Islanders play host to the scorching hot Tampa Bay Lightning at Barclays Center in Brooklyn on Sunday night as both Eastern Conference teams comes off games the day before.

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Jan 12, 2019; Brooklyn, NY, USA; New York Islanders right wing Jordan Eberle (7) shoots against New York Rangers goalie Alexandar Georgiev (40) in front of defenseman Brady Skjei (76) during the second period at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports  (Brad Penner)
Jan 12, 2019; Brooklyn, NY, USA; New York Islanders right wing Jordan Eberle (7) shoots against New York Rangers goalie Alexandar Georgiev (40) in front of defenseman Brady Skjei (76) during the second period at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

The Rangers finally broke their five-game slump on Saturday, edging the Islanders at the Barclays Center, 2-1, courtesy of a go-ahead goal from Mats Zuccarello 14:55 into the final period and 24 saves out of goaltender Alexander Georgiev. >> Box score


First period:

  • N/A
Tags: Anthony Beauvillier, Mats Zuccarello
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Dec 31, 2018; Buffalo, NY, USA; New York Islanders left wing Anders Lee (27) takes a shot on goal as Buffalo Sabres defenseman Zach Bogosian (4) looks to block it during the first period at KeyBank Center. Mandatory Credit: Timothy T. Ludwig-USA TODAY Sports (Timothy T. Ludwig)
Dec 31, 2018; Buffalo, NY, USA; New York Islanders left wing Anders Lee (27) takes a shot on goal as Buffalo Sabres defenseman Zach Bogosian (4) looks to block it during the first period at KeyBank Center. Mandatory Credit: Timothy T. Ludwig-USA TODAY Sports (Timothy T. Ludwig)

When the New York Islanders and New York Rangers split a pair of high-scoring games in November, it appeared both teams might stay in contention for postseason spots in the Eastern Conference.

Nearly two months later, the Islanders are ascending while the Rangers are dealing with a significant tailspin and falling way behind in the playoff race.

On Saturday afternoon, the teams will get together for the last time this season and for the last time at Brooklyn's Barclays Center when then Rangers visit the Islanders in the back end of a home-and-home set. >> Read more

Tags: Chris Kreider, Josh Bailey
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Isles beat Rangers 4-3 00:01:13
The Islanders have been on a hot streak, while the Rangers are faltering. Tonight proved no different as the Isles won 4-3.

Josh Bailey buried the game-winner with less than two minutes left in a 4-3 win over the Rangers at Madison Square Garden on Thursday night. >> Box score


First period:

  • 1:38 NYR Ryan Strome (Power Play); Assists: Jimmy Vesey, Filip Chytil
  • 2:31 NYI Mathew Barzal; Assists: Johnny Boychuk
  • 8:51 NYI Jordan Eberle (Power Play); Assists: Anders Lee, Mathew Barzal
Tags: Josh Bailey, Mathew Barzal
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 (Adam Hunger)
(Adam Hunger)

A battle against your cross-town rival is one way to snap out of a funk. Both the Islanders and Rangers need a victory Thursday night as the teams prepare to play against each other at Madison Square Garden in the front end of a home-and-home. 
 
The Rangers must find a way to prevent the ship from completely collapsing after an ugly four-game losing streak in which they were outscored 22-5 and Henrik Lundqvist was chased from the net twice.
 
The Islanders fell to the Hurricanes on Tuesday, snapping an impressive six-game winning streak highlighted by a dominant 4-0 win over the Maple Leafs in Toronto. 

Tags: Brock Nelson, Chris Kreider, Henrik Lundqvist, Jordan Eberle, Kevin Hayes, Kevin Shattenkirk, Mats Zuccarello, Valtteri Filppula
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Jan 5, 2019; St. Louis, MO, USA; New York Islanders left wing Matt Martin (17) is congratulated by right wing Cal Clutterbuck (15) and center Casey Cizikas (53) after scoring during the second period against the St. Louis Blues at Enterprise Center. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports (Jeff Curry)
Jan 5, 2019; St. Louis, MO, USA; New York Islanders left wing Matt Martin (17) is congratulated by right wing Cal Clutterbuck (15) and center Casey Cizikas (53) after scoring during the second period against the St. Louis Blues at Enterprise Center. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports (Jeff Curry)

The Islanders scored four straight goals, three of which in the third period, and held off the Blues late comeback effort to secure a 4-3 road victory.  Read more >>

First period

  • 4:11 STL Brayden Schenn; Assists: Jaden Schwartz, Jay Bouwmeester
  • 16:37 STL Zach Sanford; Assists: Vince Dunn, Tyler Bozak
Tags: Anders Lee, Johnny Boychuk, Jordan Eberle, St. Louis Blues
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Dec 18, 2018; Glendale, AZ, USA; New York Islanders center Brock Nelson (29) celebrates with defenseman Ryan Pulock (6) and left wing Anders Lee (27) after scoring a goal in the second period against the Arizona Coyotes at Gila River Arena. Mandatory Credit: Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports (Matt Kartozian)
Dec 18, 2018; Glendale, AZ, USA; New York Islanders center Brock Nelson (29) celebrates with defenseman Ryan Pulock (6) and left wing Anders Lee (27) after scoring a goal in the second period against the Arizona Coyotes at Gila River Arena. Mandatory Credit: Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports (Matt Kartozian)

As expected, the first meeting of the season between the St. Louis Blues and the New York Islanders will pit a team with one of the worst records in the NHL against one vying for a playoff spot.

But the Blues and Islanders will be occupying different spots than most projected Saturday night, when St. Louis hosts New York.

Both teams are coming off home wins Thursday. The Blues beat the Washington Capitals 5-2, and the Islanders edged the Chicago Blackhawks, 3-2 in overtime.

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New York Islanders defenseman Devon Toews celebrates his game-winning goal against the Chicago Blackhawks during overtime at Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum. (Brad Penner/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Islanders defenseman Devon Toews celebrates his game-winning goal against the Chicago Blackhawks during overtime at Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum. (Brad Penner/USA TODAY Sports)

Islanders rookie defenseman Devon Toews scored his first-career NHL goal 1:48 into overtime to give New York a 3-2 win over the Chicago Blackhawks on Thursday at Nassau Coliseum.

"It's pretty special to get your first NHL goal in overtime," Islanders head coach Barry Trotz said, according to Newsday's Andrew Gross.

The 24-year-old Toews, a former fourth-round pick who had spent 130 games with AHL Bridgeport before making his debut on Dec. 23, took a shot from the right face-off circle that Blackhawks goalie Collin Delia initially stopped. But Toews picked up the rebound and shot the puck between Delia's legs for the winner.

Tags: Chicago Blackhawks, Mathew Barzal
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Jan 3, 2019; Uniondale, NY, USA; New York Islanders defenseman Devon Toews (25) celebrates his game winning goal against the Chicago Blackhawks during overtime at Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Jan 3, 2019; Uniondale, NY, USA; New York Islanders defenseman Devon Toews (25) celebrates his game winning goal against the Chicago Blackhawks during overtime at Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

Islanders rookie D Devon Toews' first NHL goal was an overtime winner to lift New York over the Blackhawks, 3-2, at the Coliseum on Thursday night.  Read more >>

First period

  • 3:05 CHI Dominik Kahun; Assists: Brandon Saad, Duncan Keith
  • 6:47 NYI Mathew Barzal; Assists: Anthony Beauvillier, Johnny Boychuk
Tags: Chicago Blackhawks
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Mathew Barzal (13) Mandatory Credit: Sergei Belski-USA TODAY Sports (Sergei Belski)
Mathew Barzal (13) Mandatory Credit: Sergei Belski-USA TODAY Sports (Sergei Belski)

Islanders young star C Mathew Barzal has been selected to represent his team in the 2019 NHL All-Star Game. 

Barzal, who will play in his first career All-Star Game, has been the center of the Isles' success on the offensive end this season. He leads the team with 36 points, and has a team-high 26 assists as well.

This selection comes a few days after being named the Player of the Week in the NHL. He had six points with five goals and one assist last week that came on a hat-trick last Saturday against the Maple Leafs. 

The San Jose Sharks' SAP Center will be the location for the All-Star Game that will take place on January 26.

Tags: Mathew Barzal
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Dec 31, 2018; Buffalo, NY, USA; New York Islanders left wing Anders Lee (27) takes a shot on goal as Buffalo Sabres defenseman Zach Bogosian (4) looks to block it during the first period at KeyBank Center. Mandatory Credit: Timothy T. Ludwig-USA TODAY Sports (Timothy T. Ludwig)
Dec 31, 2018; Buffalo, NY, USA; New York Islanders left wing Anders Lee (27) takes a shot on goal as Buffalo Sabres defenseman Zach Bogosian (4) looks to block it during the first period at KeyBank Center. Mandatory Credit: Timothy T. Ludwig-USA TODAY Sports (Timothy T. Ludwig)

The New York Islanders took care of business on the road against the Buffalo Sabres after grabbing a 3-1 win on Monday. Read more >>

First period

No goals scored

Tags: Brock Nelson, Nick Leddy, Buffalo Sabres
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Dallas Stars right wing Alexander Radulov is called for hooking against New York Islanders right wing Joshua Ho-Sang in the first period at American Airlines Center. (Tim Heitman/USA TODAY Sports)
Dallas Stars right wing Alexander Radulov is called for hooking against New York Islanders right wing Joshua Ho-Sang in the first period at American Airlines Center. (Tim Heitman/USA TODAY Sports)

>> Box score


First period:

  • N/A

Second period:

  • 6:20 DAL Tyler Pitlick; Assists: Mattias Janmark, Jason Spezza
  • 14:10 NYI Casey Cizikas
Tags: Ottawa Senators
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Dallas Stars right wing Alexander Radulov is called for hooking against New York Islanders right wing Joshua Ho-Sang in the first period at American Airlines Center. (Tim Heitman/USA TODAY Sports)
Dallas Stars right wing Alexander Radulov is called for hooking against New York Islanders right wing Joshua Ho-Sang in the first period at American Airlines Center. (Tim Heitman/USA TODAY Sports)

The Islanders won for the fourth time in their last five games when they defeated the Dallas Stars 3-1 on Sunday at American Airlines Center. >> Box score


First period:

  • N/A

Second period:

  • 6:20 DAL Tyler Pitlick; Assists: Mattias Janmark, Jason Spezza
  • 14:10 NYI Casey Cizikas
Tags: Dallas Stars
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Nov 23, 2018; Newark, NJ, USA; New York Islanders center Mathew Barzal (13) skates with the puck in front of goaltender Thomas Greiss (1) during the second period against the New Jersey Devils at Prudential Center. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports (Vincent Carchietta)
Nov 23, 2018; Newark, NJ, USA; New York Islanders center Mathew Barzal (13) skates with the puck in front of goaltender Thomas Greiss (1) during the second period against the New Jersey Devils at Prudential Center. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports (Vincent Carchietta)

The Islanders bid farewell to their three-game winning streak after allowing three goals in the third period to the Vegas Golden Knights in a 4-2 loss. >> Box score


First period:

  • 18:30 NYI Mathew Barzal; Assists: Josh Bailey
  • 19:38 NYI Brock Nelson; Assists: Jordan Eberle, Ryan Pulock

Second period:

  • 8:48 VGK Brandon Pirri (Power play); Assists: Nate Schmidt, Cody Eakin

Third period:

  • 6:22 VGK William Karlsson; Assists: Shea Theodore, Nate Schmidt
  • 7:25 VGK Paul Stastny; Assists: Reilly Smith, Nick Holden
  • 1945 VGK Nate Schmidt (Empty net); Unassisted
Tags: Brock Nelson, Mathew Barzal
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Dec 18, 2018; Glendale, AZ, USA; New York Islanders center Brock Nelson (29) celebrates with defenseman Ryan Pulock (6) and left wing Anders Lee (27) after scoring a goal in the second period against the Arizona Coyotes at Gila River Arena. Mandatory Credit: Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports (Matt Kartozian)
Dec 18, 2018; Glendale, AZ, USA; New York Islanders center Brock Nelson (29) celebrates with defenseman Ryan Pulock (6) and left wing Anders Lee (27) after scoring a goal in the second period against the Arizona Coyotes at Gila River Arena. Mandatory Credit: Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports (Matt Kartozian)

The Islanders continued their winning ways out west with a 3-1 victory over the Phoenix Coyotes on Tuesday night. >> Box score


First period:

  • 9:14 PHO Mario Kempe; Assists: Alex Goligoski, Nick Cousins
  • 17:04 NYI Joshua Ho-Sang; Assists: Ryan Pulock, Valterri Filpulla

Second period:

  • 3:38 NYI Brock Nelson; Assists: Jordan Eberle, Ryan Pulock
  • 8:29 NYI Anthony Beauvillier; Assists: Josh Bailey
Tags: Arizona Coyotes, Brock Nelson
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New York Islanders right wing Jordan Eberle controls the puck behind the Colorado Avalanche net in the first period at the Pepsi Center. (Ron Chenoy/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Islanders right wing Jordan Eberle controls the puck behind the Colorado Avalanche net in the first period at the Pepsi Center. (Ron Chenoy/USA TODAY Sports)

The Islanders started their four-game West Coast road trip with a 4-1 win over the Colorado Avalanche on Monday at Pepsi Center. >> Box score


First period:

  • 18:20 NYI Jordan Eberle; Assists: Brock Nelson, Anders Lee

Second period:

  • 2:07 NYI Johnny Boychuk (power play); Assists: Ryan Pulock, Josh Bailey
  • 6:45 COL Gabriel Landeskog (power play); Assists: Tyson Barrie, Nathan MacKinnon
  • 18:25 NYI Ander Lee (power play); Assists: Nick Leddy, Jordan Eberle
Tags: Anders Lee, Colorado Avalanche, Johnny Boychuk, Jordan Eberle
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