Jaroslav Halak made 20 saves in his franchise-record 11th straight victory, and the New York Islanders held on for a 2-1 win over the Ottawa Senators on Thursday night.
Jaroslav Halak made 34 saves for his ninth straight win, and Cal Clutterbuck scored his third goal of the season as the New York Islanders got back to their winning ways with a 3-1 victory over the New Jersey Devils on Saturday night.
The Islanders will try for their first six-game winning streak in seven seasons when they take on the Capitals in Washington on Friday in the back end of a home-and-home set.
This is a completely different hockey team than we’ve seen in years past. The Isles have tons of offensive firepower, defensive depth and quality goaltending.
How’s this for a stat: the Isles have more wins than the Jets (2), Giants (3), Knicks (4) and Nets (5) combined.
Anders Lee scored the go-ahead goal early in the third period, Jaroslav Halak made 27 saves, and the New York Islanders beat the Pittsburgh Penguins 4-1 on Saturday night to sweep a home-and-home series.
The mob formed at the gate armed with pitchforks and torches. It mattered little that it was just the eighth game of the season. The crowd wanted blood. They wanted Jaroslav Halak’s head on a stick.
Just as the wheels appeared to be falling off, the New York Islanders pulled over to the side, brought out their toolbox and, sure enough, got back on the road.
At this point, it would be reckless to say the Islanders will challenge for the top seed in the East, but a 3-0 start that includes a 6-3 win over the Rangers is absolutely delicious for this affection- and attention-starved franchise.
Had John Tortorella still been coaching the Rangers, turnover-prone defenseman Mike Kostka would have been glued to the bench for the rest of Tuesday night’s 6-3 loss to the rival Islanders. As it were, Alain Vigneault had other ideas.
Whether or not they’ll keep this up remains to be seen, but there’s certainly a lot to like about how they’ve played out of the gate.
The Islanders and Rangers — and their fans — have been at each other’s throats for years. The rivalry lost some luster over the last decade, but it now appears to be back and healthier than ever.
For the first time in ages, the Islanders are built to contend. It’s now on fifth-year head coach Jack Capuano to get this team to the next level. Will he? We’re certainly going to find out.
If their offseason activity is any indication, the Islanders fully intend to leave Nassau Coliseum on a high note.
There is nothing new about the New York Islanders heading into a new season trying to improve on the one before. Yet, this one has a different feel even though last season ended again without a trip to the playoffs.