Islanders even series the hard way
By Jerry DiPaola
Published: Friday, May 3, 2013, 10:36 p.m.
The New York Islanders didn't do it the easy way.
Rather, left wing Matt Moulson said the Islanders did it the “dirty” way.
The Penguins keep giving th Islanders opportunities. Who knows where this series might end up if the Islanders ever start taking advantage?
As it is, the Islanders are going home with the series tied at 1-1 after a 4-3 victory Friday night at Consol Energy Center. The series resumes Sunday in Long Island.
“I don't think any of them were too pretty,” said Moulson, the only Islanders player to score a power-play goal in the series' first two games. “We'll take them. They don't ask how.”
The difference Friday, compared to a 5-0 Penguins victory Wednesday, was the Islanders mostly throwing pucks toward the net — 42 in all — and seeing what happens.
Moulson said his goal in the first period was a good example.
“I got a lucky bounce off (defenseman Doug) Murray's stick,” he said. “That's a dirty goal, a greasy goal.”
Islanders coach Jack Capuano liked his team's forechecking and ability to beat the Penguins to loose pucks. He didn't necessarily see it as dirty.
“I thought for the most part we did a lot of good things from a structural standpoint,” he said.
The Islanders, the No. 8 seed, have scored only one goal in eight power-play chances in this series, a bit of a surprise with the Penguins struggling when the opponent has the man-advantage most of the season. Before the playoffs, the Penguins were 25th in the 30-team NHL after allowing 34 goals on 167 shots (a 79.6 percent success rate) when the other team was on the power play.
The Islanders were sixth in power-play goal percentage (19.9) in the conference in the regular season.
The problems on the power play didn't matter Friday. They didn't have any power plays in the final period when the game was decided. The Islanders scored three times at even strength after the Penguins built a 3-1 lead after the first period.
The winner came with 7:37 left in the game on a shot by Islanders right wing Kyle Okposo that went behind the net, hit the back of Marc-Andre Fleury's pads and trickled into the net.
The one time the Islanders did score with the manpower edge, the Penguins responded 18 seconds later with Sidney Crosby's second goal of the game. That gave the Penguins a 3-1 lead after the first period, but the Islanders managed to tie the score at 3-3 going into the third period on even-strength goals by Colin McDonald and Matt Martin.
The Penguins were able to neutralize the Islanders' power play thanks to defenseman Kris Letang jumping John Tavares at most opportunties.
Murray also made a key play while killing a power play in the second period. Murray slammed his 6-foot-3, 245-pound body to the ice to block a shot by right wing Brad Boyes. On one knee, Murray cleared the puck out of danger.
In the end, the Islanders were better on even terms with the Penguins, and that was the difference.
Jerry DiPaola is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. Reach him at email@example.com or via Twitter @JDiPaola_Trib.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Penguins’ Neal suspended five games for Marchand hit
- Penguins notebook: Dumoulin gets his chance
- Young defensemen lift Penguins to win
- Penguins players are not out looking for fights
- Penguins have never been better on power play
- Rossi: Penguins’ Orpik among select NHLers going without gluten
- Fleury, Crosby lead Penguins to victory over Sharks at Consol
- Penguins notebook: Injury keeps Malkin out against Sharks
- Penguins’ Orpik taken off ice on stretcher in loss to Bruins
- Penguins notebook: Scuderi could practice within a week
- Jokinen takes center stage as fill-in for Pens’ Malkin