The Islanders welcomed season ticket holders home for the first time in over a year tonight as they hosted the Flyers. They were only at 10% capacity, but it was still fantastic to see real people in the stands and hear all the familiar Islanders’ chants throughout.
Islanders 1st Period
At the beginning of the game, the Isles came out very conservatively. After a particularly bad loss to the Capitals on Tuesday, the Isles needed to be better.
Early on, the Islanders got to almost every loose puck possible. They generated a few scoring chances, including Ryan Pulock ringing a post once again this season. The Isles were playing much smarter to start the period.
Seven minutes in, each team had just two shots. However, the Islanders also hit a post. Their chances were also better to that point.
At 8:36 elapsed in the period, Mat Barzal was called for a double-minor for high sticking.
The Islanders managed to kill off the scary powerplay in which the Flyers mustered only four shots, but several chances that went wide.
With 6:27 left in the period, Obe Kubel was called for roughing and sent to the penalty bench for two minutes.
New York struggled to get set up on the powerplay, at first. Jordan Eberle managed to get a solid chance that he hit the crossbar on.
Trotz sent out the fourth line to get something going after the man-advantage ended. Little did he know that his guys would generate something in the final eight seconds of the powerplay. They just couldn’t capitalize on the chance.
Keiffer Bellows then had a chance late in the period and couldn’t capitalize. Anthony Beauvillier did, as well.
After one, the Isles and Flyers were still had no score.
Islanders 2nd Period
Philadelphia came out of the locker room to start the second period as a totally different team than they were in the first. They got to every loose puck just as the Islanders normally do.
Not only did New York look extremely flat early on, but Cal Clutterbuck got tied up with Jakub Voracek and went down awkwardly. At first, it looked like it could be another Anders Lee situation, but he got up and got right to the bench.
This was the beginning of a very rough period for the Isles. They went on to be outshot 12-5 in the period, and they didn’t get much offensive zone time. The first shot for the Isles came at 6:06 in.
They still only had one shot when Philly potted their second goal of the night. This time, it was Claude Giroux from Nate Prosser and Travis Konecny at 10:04.
The Josh Bailey line got a chance immediately following the Flyer goal that went by the wayside. The Isles desperately needed a goal, and they couldn’t seem to get one.
The Isles were outshot 12-5 in the period, and Philadelphia took a 3-0 lead into the locker room.
Islanders 3rd Period
The Flyers initially came out playing well in the third. They were really just trying to milk the clock down and play chip-and-chase hockey.
They succeeded in that until the Isles got a chance on net. Not only did they get a chance, but they capitalized on it. Michael Dal Colle potted his first goal of the season. Nick Leddy and Josh Bailey got the assists. The goal came at 7:53 elapsed in the period and would begin a pattern for New York.
Casey Cizikas then immediately brought the puck back into the Philadelphia zone. This continued the string of pressure for the Isles.
At 13:53, exactly 6 minutes after the Dal Colle goal, Sebastian Aho scored on a goal that was assisted by Nick Leddy and Dal Colle. The pattern continued. More importantly, the Isles were still alive.
Just 25 seconds later, the game was tied. Oliver Wahlstrom stayed hot, scoring again to tie the game at 3-3. Nick Leddy got his third assist of the night and Adam Pelech got his first. The Isles were back in business at the Coli.
The Flyers would get lucky and capitalize on their only real chance of the period, and it was cancer survivor Oskar Lindblom again. This time from Travis Konecny and Travis Sanheim at 17:38 to make it 4-3 Flyers.
The Islanders would pull Varlamov just seconds later and get quite a few chances, all of which were shut down by Carter Hart.
New York Wrap-Up
While the Isles played well in the final 20 minutes, the first 40 were simply too sloppy to come away from tonight’s game with any points. They have now dropped 2 in a row in regulation, but they are still 8-2-0 in their last 10. They still sit tied atop the East division with Washington, who has two games at hand. New York will play their next game at the Coli on Saturday at 7:00 PM against these same Flyers.
1st Star – Oskar Lindblom – 2G, GWG
2nd Star – Travis Konecny – 3A
3rd Star – Nick Leddy – 3A