(March 2) The Islanders take on the Penguins again Tuesday in Pittsburgh, following Sunday's matinee overtime loss on Long Island, in which Oleg Kvasha picked up a point in a third-straight game. The Isles' playoff push takes to the road for seven of the next eight games, starting in the Steel City.
The Isles earned a point for a second straight game Sunday, to push their lead over ninth-place Buffalo to nine points. But when they gave up the overtime goal against Pittsburgh, it was the first time the Isles lost two-straight at home since the beginning of December. They'll get a chance to get away for a while, playing seven of their next eight games away from the Coliseum.
With nine goals on the road this season, Trent Hunter will be a big part of any success the Isles have from here on out. The youngster picked up his 45th point of the season in Sunday's contest, assisting on the first goal. The point gave him sole possession of the team scoring lead once again, putting him on pace for 55 points this year.
The Book on the Penguins
Sunday afternoon, the Penguins bettered their road record to 6-22-3-4, with an overtime win on Long Island. Though they boast the league's worst penalty kill, they were able to hold the Islanders off the board through five powerplay chances. They're also the proud owners of the NHL's worst defense, allowing an average of 33.1 shots per game and 3.88 goals per outing.
Blueliner Dick Tarnstrom is the Pens' top gun, picking up 25 assists and 36 points, while rookie Ryan Malone has posted the most goals with 20. L.I.'s own Rob Scuderi holds the best plus/minus rating, checking in at -1. Kelly Buchberger missed the last game, but has been called for a team-high 109 minutes in penalties.
Heading into the game in Pittsburgh Tuesday, rookie sensation Ryan Malone has four points in his past four games. One of the few bright spots for the fans in Pittsburgh, Malone is the quintessential local boy done good, leading his team in goal-scoring in his first NHL season, playing for his hometown team. In five games against the Isles this season, he's scored two goals.
(Feb. 29) The Islanders meet up with the Pittsburgh Penguins tonight to complete a home-and-home series at the Igloo. The Pens are feeling good about themselves after taking the first game of the series, 3-2, in overtime on Sunday. Pittsburgh hosts the Islanders at the Mellon Arena as they try to snap a 14-game home losing streak.
Where They Stand:
Despite ranking in the cellar of the NHL standings, the Penguins have recently been playing some of their best hockey of the season. Overall, they sit in last place among all 30 NHL teams with a record of 13-43-5-4 in 65 contests. In their last 10 games, they have gone 2-7-0-1, which includes a loss to the San Jose Sharks, which head coach Eddie Olczyk said was the team's best game of the season. The Penguins also have a home record of 7-21-3-0.
Can the Isles show some heart, please? It seems clear that the Pens want this game more and that is unforgivable. How can you take this team lightly, as it seems to me they are, when they just beat you less than a week ago?
I know Rick still "feels sore" but maybe he should be sucking it up and playing because the team needs him. I wish I knew if I should be upset with him or the coach for the fact that he isn't playing.
Last edited by Isle Be Back: 03-02-2004 at 10:09 PM.
This is a game thread? There have been more goals than posts here. Where are you guys? How has the game been? Is Chiodo the story again? What about Hunter?
I guess everyone is disgusted by the Islanders effort and have nothing to say.
All due respect to Pittsburgh, but the Islanders played like a team struggling and they should have lost and as opposed to the last game Pittsburgh was skating but not getting many chances either. Isles were not smart or disciplined and for every goal that may have been questionable Snow gave them some saves in the third and bailed them out.
Blake was benched, Manlow did not play.
Chiodo was good, he did not have to be great. That two on one Bates has to lift the puck and finish. Hunter was losing battles all night and the Isles in general were a step slow for a second straight game. Blake had a lucky screen for a goal and Ronning made a nice play on a shot Chiodo should have had.
Only shift of the last two games I liked for the Isles was how the Isles wore down Pittsburgh for Parrish's goal.
PP? Horribly slow and predictable. Four minutes and Chiodo did not have to do much of anything. Turning point.
They are not going to make anyone sellers playing like this. Florida/Atlanta gain a point, Buffalo gains a game in hand.
What did you guys think of Orpik? As most of you have seen him a few times (since the beginning of the season) how would you rate his progression? Where do you see him ending up in terms of the peak of his career?
Orpik reminds me of Dallas Drake. He'll lead the Pens in penalties every year probably. There was one good sign in last night's debacle, Blake and Parrish scored. It's been a long time for both of them. The Isles sure could use a scoring streak from those guys. Garth was mediocre in goal. Which team was Niinimaa playing for in the overtime? Next up Toronto. Buckle up, boys.
Team Self-Destruct appears to be rearing its ugly head.
NYI have played poor their last four games (NYR, BUF, PIT, PIT) and only get two points from BUF game because of Ricky. One point from each BUF game when NYI were leading is terrible.
Has anyone seen Hunter shoot the puck lately?
Bates, Peca: zero excuses for not scoring on several golden opportunities.
When was the last time Peca scored?
NYI have a total 180 in terms of opponents the next four games: TOR, STL, STL, SJ w/3 of these on the road.... may turn into holding onto 8th spot or a return to pushing for the 7th.
They have 2 games in their Last 12 games that have not result in points
(4-2-5-1 ---both losses to the $tRanger$)
Take your pessimism to the $tRanger$ board. There's more reason for it over there with their current ownership/management.