To start off their "do-or-die" week, it was the night of the skating dead for the Islanders on their home ice.
The Isles were ready to make a statement this week as they played three division opponents who are all looking for a wild card slot. But, instead of coming out with the same intensity, New York dropped a dud on their home ice as the Blue Jackets waltzed away with a 4-1 win.
Head coach Doug Weight said "we were just flat" as they were outshot 51-30, and allowed four unanswered goals after John Tavares' power-play goal in the first period.
"No executino, that's for sure," Weight told Newsday's Anthony Rieber. "They worked, but they were slow-footed, weren't moving. They just were not good. Guys are emotional on the bench. They're trying to get each other going. I don't know."
Jaroslav Halak looked on the ball to start the game, as shots thrown his way were deflected away before the Isles' took their first and only lead. But he couldn't hang on in the second with both Columbus goals coming on the power play.
The game was close at 2-1 to start the third, but the Blue Jackets made sure to put the Islanders away with two quick goals at 6:01 and 6:44.
We knew they were going to come out hard, they were going to shoot everything," Halak said. "The first two period, I don't think we shot enough."
Anders Lee called the contest "just more of the same," and he couldn't be more right as the Islanders, once again, couldn't challenge another opponent's forecheck with their own. Halak has the ability to hold off teams, but only for so long.
"It comes down to execution and effort and playing with heart," he said. "I think we need to just throw pucks at the net. You don't know, it might bounce off somebody and that might be a winning goal."
The Islanders can make up for not grabbing points on Tuesday when they play the Rangers Thursday and Hurricanes the night after.