Kovalchuk Destroys Islanders Playoff Hopes- Devils 5 Islanders 1
What a difference home ice advantage makes.
After a poor performance in a 1-0 loss to the New York Islanders on Sunday Afternoon, the New Jersey Devils found their game, and the back of the net.
Ilya Kovalchuk scored three goals for his second hat trick in a month pacing the Devils to a comfortable 5-1 victory over the fading Islanders.
Kovalchuk started the scoring barrage 8:07 into the first period. After missing a one-time attempt, he took the rebound chance and snapped over a fallen Evgeni Nabokov for an early 1-0 advantage.
The line of Kovalchuk, Zach Parise, and Adam Henrique combined for 7 points after being held pointless on Sunday.
Kovalchuk’s second goal came on the power-play, 14 seconds after Steve Staios took yet another minor penalty. Marek Zidlicky found a wide-open Kovalchuk that he blew right past Nabokov.
After Parise nearly made the game 3-0 on a 2-on-1, the Islanders found their legs. The second half of the 2nd period was mainly in the Devils end. After countless missed opportunities to score, Andrew MacDonald cut the lead to 2-1 on a flukey shot that banked off of Martin Brodeur. The Islanders, through two periods, outshot the Devils 19-11.
The third period was all too familiar for the Islanders. On a delayed penalty, Patrik Elias had not one, not two, but three chance in front of Nabokov. Third time was the charm as Elias found the back of the net for a 3-1 advantage. The wind officially was out of the sails at 8:09 as Kovalchuk completed his hat-trick.
David Clarkson would score the 5th and final goal of the game late in the third period. Martin Brodeur yielded only one goal for the third consecutive game. Brodeur finished with 29 saves.
The season series is tied at 2 with the teams meeting Saturday night on Long Island.
Not much to say here, just an awful job from the 4th line to the head coach. In a must-win game, losing 5-1 is difficult to swallow. Hopefully a new coach will be brought in for the 2012-13 that has passion and emotion. For the coach to go on TV and say they defended well is an absolute joke. You just got dominated 5-1 and you defended well? Did he watch Kovalchuk made them look like pee-wee’s. Nabokov looked horrible again, hopefully we get Nilsson Saturday. At least he wanted to be there. Nabby quit these past few weeks. Even the Rangers game, he wasn’t good, the Islanders played like it was game seven and got lucky to get the game to a skills competition. He might be tired, but I haven’t seen the same goalie as I did earlier this year.
Always next year for the Islanders. Nothing else to say here, just terrible.