Singing the Blues After A Blown Three-Goal Lead

If this was last year this would have been a regular headline; one that showed the Islanders blow a multi-goal lead.  Fortunately this year the tune being sung has been completely different, except for yesterday, where the Isles sung the blues.

First Period-

If the game was played for only 20 minutes, it would have been one of the Islanders marquee victories against an elite team.  It isn't, and it wasn't, but damn did they look good in the first period.  They were flying all over the net, chances left & right, & they were granted with three goals for their hard work.  The first came on the PP (yes you read that right) after a scrum in front of the net & a beautiful, blind pass to the slot by Kyle Okposo to a wide-open Frans Nielsen, who buried it in the back of the net.  Play was pretty even throughout the middle of the period until about 2 minutes left in the period, where Ryan Strome threw one at the net from about 20 feet out & it went in.  The third came about a minute later, where Matt Donovan snapped one at Jake Allen, who let a terrible rebound fall onto Michael Grabner's stick and in time back into the net.  The Islanders were confident, probably overconfident, & it would be the death of them for the rest of the game.

Second Period-

It was a tale of two completely different games, the second one where St. Louis completely dominated play.  There was even a new goalie in net, as Martin Brodeur took over for Jake Allen at the beginning of the second period.  As in usual Islanders fashion last year, Nick Leddy got an early penalty to get the Blues PP going.  Paul Stastny started it off by trickling one past Jaroslav Halak's outstretched leg 2:36 into the period, and it was all downhill from there.  A Patrick Berglund deflection 2 minutes later made it a 3-2 game, and even after the first goal given up you could tell momentum was shifting the other way in favor of the Blues.  Halfway through the period the Blues were on the PP again & Kevin Shattenkirk fired one from the point past Halak and tied it at 3.  The Islanders finally caught a break when Matt Donovan more or less fell & the refs called a phantom tripping call on Paul Stastny.  The Isles capitalized again on the PP, as John Tavares put one in from the slot that was almost miraculously saved by the Blues new goaltender Brodeur.  The second period ended with the Islanders up but the Blues with all the momentum, even with the goal to re-take the lead by the Islanders.

Third Period-

The third period was more of the same from the Blues.  Constant pressure, lots of shots on net, & PP opportunities doomed the Islanders.  Another PPG by T.J. Oshie on a very questionable hooking call on Ryan Strome tied the game up.  The Islanders were barely hanging in for the rest of the period until Paul Stastny put one past Halak & essentially ended any chance of an Islanders victory.  Vladimir Tarasenko, one of the future studs of the league, sealed the deal with a snipe that made it 6-4.  The Islanders just did not skate well in the third period, and let St. Louis get great shots on net, which were converted into goals.  Overall it was a pretty poor effort for a 4 goal game, with NY being out shot 40-27.

Quick Hits-

-This is just one game so I don't think it's time to hit any sort of panic button.  The overreaction from some fans is insane.  It's one game folks, & they're playing severely undermanned in the defensive department.  Things will be okay.

-The sign of a good team is that they will come back & beat their next opponent handily, the Minnesota Wild, and make all adjustments so the defense is not out of position as it was against St. Louis.

-The PK continues to struggle, unable to sustain any pressure on the shooters or clear the zone.  Something needs to be done about their alignment.  It doesn't seem like the triangle formation, one that is meant to keep all shots to the outside, is working very well.

-I don't think Jaroslav Halak played as bad as the score indicates today.  He was hung out to dry on a few occasions, and was screened for two of the PP goals. However, the point of a money goaltender is one who is constantly making saves he shouldn't be making.

-Next game is in Minnesota tomorrow.  Puck drops @ 7 PM.  It should be interesting to see what kind of game Nino Niederreiter has against us.  Tweet me @SupRos22 or @TCLIsles for any Isles coverage or questions!

-Chris Passarelli