Postgame 11/19: Islanders @ Maple Leafs
In this matchup of fast paced teams, it was no secret that there was going to be a good amount of wide open action.
It didn't take long at all for the Maple Leafs to strike. 22 seconds into the game, the Islanders comitted a defensive breakdown and give up a goal to Trevor Smith. The Islanders would settle down after this. They played much more composed hockey and were able to finish the period stong. The score was 1-0 Leafs after one period.
In the second, the Maple Leafs went to work on the power play. Phil Kessel scored on a perfect wrist shot by Kevin Poulin. There wasn't much for Poulin to do at all here. Joffrey Lupul also picked up his second assist of the game. With 12 seconds remaining, Casey Cizikas scored on a breakaway goal to cut the deficit to one. This was his third goal in as many games.
The Islanders controlled the pace to start the third period. They had some excellent chances and really put some pressure on Jonathon Bernier. But, Mason Raymond put a rebound home to give the Maple Leafs a 4-1 lead. Yet another defensive breakdown lead to the goal. The Islanders have really been struggling on the back end. Halfway through the third, David Clarkson netted his first goal as a Toronto Maple Leaf. The Islanders were simply outworked in their own zone.
Frans Nielson scored a goal late in third to pull them within 2. But, their late efforts would not be enough. Phil Kessel would answer a few minutes later to ice the game with his second of the game. The final score was 5-2 Maple Leafs.
Although the Islanders had more shots than the Leafs, the reality is that the Islanders have not had a consistent defensive game. They are going nowhere until they either make changes to the lineup or some younger defenseman start sticking to their assignments.
William Tranfaglia (@BillyTran51) (@TCLIsles)