The New York Islanders welcome the Colorado Avalanche to the Barclays Center in a reverse fixture from the first meeting between the two at the start of January. Avalanche are still the worst, but the Isles could reach the playoffs.
The New York Islanders are back at home after stumbling on the road in an afternoon game in Canada’s capital. To be fair, the narrative was against the Islanders from the start with Craig Anderson was making his first appearance for ten weeks.
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But now, heading home, the Islanders can get their playoff push back on track with a date against the worst team in the NHL. The Avalanche are on pace to 50 points this season. That’s worse than the not-at-all-ashamed to admit it tanking Buffalo Sabres who picked up 54 points in their failed quest for Connor McDavid. (Jack Eichel was a fantastic runners-up prize, though).
Think about that, a team with Gabriel Landeskog, Matt Duchene, and Nathan MacKinnon either in or just about to enter their prime is having a worse go than a team that had….Brian Gionta and Matt Moulson?
Yet, that Colorado team was able to take two points from the Islanders back in January with a 2-1 overtime win.
With a win today, the Islanders can sit level with the Toronto Maple Leafs and the Philadelphia Flyers for that final wild-card spot in the Eastern Conference.
Who’s Hot, Who’s Not
New York Islanders
Last Five Games: 1G, 5A, 6PTS
Shades of the 2013-14 Ryan Strome are starting to come through. Save for that little blip in late October, we haven’t seen this type of production from Ryan Strome. But with a four-game point streak before the entire team was shut out in Ottawa Ryan Strome looks like a new player.
Who knows what Doug Weight has told the 23-year-old, but it’s working so far. Strome is once again playing with confidence and it’s starting to manifest itself on the scoresheet on a consistent basis.
New York Islanders
Last Five Games: 0G, 0A,0PTS, 10 Shots
Beauvillier has been pretty quite in the last five games, putting up a total of zero points, and it’s not because he’s been a healthy scratch either.
Beauvillier has had flashes here and there, but nothing is finding its way to the back of the net. Maybe he needs more time on the ice because his 13:12 average ice time, only Alan Quine is lower. Maybe it’s because “Beau” is being bounced around lines day-to-day.
New York Islanders Lineup
Lee-Tavares-Bailey Leddy-Boychuk Beauvillier-Nelson-Strome Hickey-Pelech Ladd-Quine-Chimera de Haan-Seidenberg Prince-Cizikas-Kulemin Berube (Greiss)