Islanders notebook: Showing experience may be overrated
The New York Islanders have 16 players — nearly three-fourths of their roster — who had been in fewer than five career playoff games before Thursday night.
The Penguins are annual postseason participants — seven consecutive seasons, including a Stanley Cup title in 2009 and the current Eastern Conference first-round series against the Islanders.
Yet the No. 8-seeded Islanders are going home for Game 6 on Saturday still holding a chance to upset the No. 1 Penguins.
“You don't need experience in the playoffs,” Islanders defenseman Brian Strait said. “You need guys to step up. That's what we've had so far.”
Strait, who was the Penguins' third-round draft choice in 2006, was claimed off waivers Jan. 18 by the Islanders. He played in three playoff games with the Penguins last season.
He said familiarity with the opponent means little.
“I don't think playing against them in practice really helps you,” he said. “(In the playoffs), it's anything goes. You have to make decisions quicker.”
Three times in the series, the Penguins — on goals by Sidney Crosby, James Neal and Evgeni Malkin — scored less than a minute after the Islanders did.
“We always talk how the shift after a goal is big,” coach Jack Capuano said. “You are facing a team that can strike quickly.”
The Penguins didn't score after an Islanders goal through two periods Thursday — for good reason: The Islanders were scoreless in that time. But Capuano's worst fears were realized. Penguins Tyler Kennedy and Douglas Murray scored 82 seconds apart in the second period.
— Jerry DiPaola
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 â 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.