Four up, four down. That's how it went for the Islanders in the playoffs as after they swept the Penguins in the first round, they just couldn't make enough plays to pull out a victory against the Hurricanes. The Isles dropped Game 4 Friday night, 5-2, and were swept out of the postseason. >> Box Score
Six takeaways from Friday's game...
1) Barry Trotz stayed with Robin Lehner in net to start the game, but Lehner was pulled 3:17 into the second after Carolina took a 3-1 lead. Greg McKegg scored when Lehner made a save but couldn't find the puck and it dropped loose. Thomas Greiss saw his first action of the postseason but it didn't matter as the Islanders wouldn't score again. Andrei Svechnikov's goal with 4:47 left to make it 5-1 put the game and series beyond doubt.
2) The Islanders got exactly what they needed at the outset, getting an early power play on which they converted with Mathew Barzal cleaning up in front 2:30 into the game after Devon Toews threw the puck toward the net.
3) That was followed up by a dumb Leo Komarov roughing penalty as he mindlessly cross-checked Justin Williams. Sebastian Aho was credited with Carolina's goal on the ensuing power play to tie the game 1-1.
4) Lehner couldn't get a whistle on a scramble in front with the puck nowhere to be found for a few moments, and the Canes took advantage. Aho stole the puck behind the net, and Teuvo Teravainen finished off a tic-tac-toe play.
5) More than five minutes after Greiss entered the game, Williams batted a Jordan Staal pass out of the air and in to give the Canes a 4-1 lead. No matter what Trotz tried -- he mixed up all his lines and Michael Dal Colle came in for an banged-up Cal Clutterbuck -- things just didn't go the Islanders' way. Not in the game, not in the series. Brock Nelson added an inconsequential goal with 1:09 left.
6) As close as the first two games of the series were, the Islanders were outplayed in Raleigh by a team which was sharper and had a killer instinct. The Islanders' season was undoubtedly successful given the expectations entering the year, but after they swept Pittsburgh, and with the Lightning and Capitals losing in the first round, the East was wide open. It will be hard not to wonder what could've been if they had made just a few more plays.