Welp, that was 10 kinds of suck. But hey, at this point a 5-0 regulation loss counts the same as a 2-1 regulation heartbreaker.
The Islanders still need points to punch their ticket, they didn’t get them last night, but they have another chance tonight in Raleigh (as well as next week in a rematch with the Lightning).
The Penguins lost in regulation, but the Panthers won big in Columbus — former never-used Islanders property Carter Verhaeghe scored four goals, to reach 40 on the year — so the wild card standings are indeed tighter, with Florida jumping over Pittsburgh and pulling to just two points behind the Isles.
Leave First Islanders Goal picks for tonight here.
About last night:
- Yuck. Burn the tape...unless you need it to learn what not to do. [LHH]
- You might call it “garbage,” as Anders Lee labeled the second period. [Post]
- Or “uncharacteristic mistakes,” if you want to be more kind about it. [Isles]
- Another meeting with the Lightning ends poorly. [Newsday]
- Dominated again by the Lightning, wild card margin now slimmer. [THN]
- The Lightning clinched a playoff spot with the win. [NHL]
- As noted yesterday, Lou Lamoriello said Mathew Barzal’s road back is taking longer than originally expected, but he is expected to resume skating this weekend. [Newsday | THN | Post]
- With Sebastian Aho taking yesterday’s morning skate, a remix of the defense could be looming. [Newsday]
- Larry Brooks’ hot take is that Ilya Sorokin deserves the Vezina over Linus Ullmark. But the entire case is invalidated in the opening by calling both “Shesterkin-like.” No, no, no...just because Sam Rosen regularly slobbers out “SHESSHHTURKIN!” like he singlehandedly landed man on the Moon doesn’t make him the standard for...anything. [Post]
SO many NHL games yesterday, though the key ones for us were the Penguins’ regulation loss and the Panthers’ romp over Columbus. The Sabres also won, so they’re four points behind the Panthers with a couple of games in hand.
Tonight the Penguins host the Flyers, while the Panthers are next in action Monday to host the Sabres.
- Overall, there were five hat trick yesterday — the first time that has happened since 1989, when defense was optional. [AP via Sportsnet]
- Boohoo, so soon after Kane and Tarasenko supposedly made them Cup contenders, the Smurfs’ offense is struggling. [Post]
- After being acquired from the Red Wings, Filip Hornek got into four games with the Canucks, now a shoulder injury may have him done for the year. [TSN]