November 14, 2011

Early tally troubles leads to Islanders 4-1 loss to Vancouver

The New York Islanders (4-7-3) gave up an early first period goal to the Vancouver Canucks (9-8-1), who never looked back in their 4-1 victory over the Isles. Vancouver was able to use their defense to create scoring opportunity against the Isles-who have now lost three straight games.

In the only meeting between these teams, the Isles are still looking for their first victory on the road-as the guys could not get their feet going until the later part of the game. Having an outstanding game in the cage for New York was Evgeni Nabokov, who recorded a season-high 32 saves in the cage.

Vancouver was able to use all of the personnel on the ice to help score their goals, earning the first score of the game at the 1:57 mark, as Aaron Rome (3) banged home a wrap-around attempt by David Booth (6) for a 1-0 lead.

The Canucks were able to find another early scoring opportunity, as with 0:34 minutes into the second period Henrik Sedin (6) took advantage of a screen set up by his teammates to add on to the Vancouver lead.

New York had plenty of opportunities throughout the night, but was stoned by Canucks keeper Roberto Luongo, who earned his 200th victory in a Vancouver uniform. The cager now has 315 wins in his career thus far, and is climbing his way up the ranks of winning keepers in the NHL.

The Islanders were able to break through on Luongo, when at the 15:09 mark Matt Moulson (4) banged home a nine foot backhanded shot, on a great effort by teammates Michael Grabner (2) and John Tavares (6).

Tavares played the puck aggressively to Grabs, who made an amazing diving pass to Moulson, who banged the puck twice on the cage to cash in on the first New York goal.  The goal for Mat is his second in three games, as the determined forward kept working at the puck until it banged home.

It was at this point in the game that the Islanders needed momentum, and great skating to try to pick up their first victory on the road. Instead it was Vancouver who rose to the occasion, starting the period off with a barrage of shots.

The Canucks took over the momentum of the game at the 2:47 mark when Cody Hodgson (4) deflected a power play goal, which was assisted by Aaron Rome (1) and Chris Higgins (4). David Booth (2) capped the victory off at the 16:59 mark, cashing in on an empty-net goal.

New York returns home to Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum, to host three of the Original Six teams in a week that’ll test this Islanders team. Fans of the Isles need to keep an eye on the horizon, as there is a storm brewing by the name of ‘El Nino.’ It was reported on the MSG Plus network tonight that Nino Niederreiter, who was injured before the start of the season, has now finished with his conditioning program with the Bridgeport Sound Tigers. Now the question is when can fans get the chance to see the young star in action.

The first opportunity for ‘El Nino’ to strike for the Islanders will be on Tuesday night, when the red-hot New York Rangers come to the Coliseum. The game is scheduled to air on the MSG Plus network, with face-off slated for 7:00 p.m.

Stacy Podelski

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