YORK NETS WINNER
By Kerry Gwydir and Corey Witt
Goals were hard to come by in this contest, but Mike York was in the right place at the right time as he scored the game-winner to give the Islanders a 2-1 win over the Detroit Red Wings. York, who was participating in his 400th career NHL game, netted the winner with just 3:41 left in the third.
"I was just glad it hit my stick," York said after the game. "This was a huge win for us tonight. This was a great start to the road trip for us."
A giveaway by Jason Blake led to the first goal of the game when Mathieu Schneider beat DiPietro at the 4:21 mark. Jason Williams harassed Blake at the Islander blueline when Blake cut-back into his own zone. The puck was dislodged and allowed Schneider to walk in and rip a slapper inside the far post.
Alexei Yashin followed that up with 1:45 to go in the same period on a goal Howard probably would want back. The rookie goaltender initially stopped a blast from the Islanders captain in which the rebound went to the right corner. Yashin put the puck right on net from a sharp angle where it looked as if Howard was caught awkwardly moving off the post. The puck then bounded off the goaltender and over the goal line.
The Islanders had the better of the chances in the second period, but could not convert. Miroslav Satan had a great chance to put the Isles up early in the second when Kirk Maltby was in the penalty box. Instead, an acrobatic right arm stop prevented what look like a sure goal off a rebound chance following a blast by Chris Campoli.
Yashin could have had his second of the contest with two minutes to go following a giveaway by Nicklas Lidstrom in his own end. After failing to clear the Detroit zone, they allowed a wide-open opportunity in the slot to Yashin; who wound up rifling a blast over the net.
The Islanders were tested midway through the third when they took two consecutive penalties that put Detroit on the man advantage for what turned out to be almost four straight minutes. The penalty killers held the Red Wings in check for the most part, but Brendan Shanahan nearly put his Wings ahead when he rang a slapper off the post.
Jason Blake had the Islanders best scoring chance of third when he skated down the ice with Trent Hunter on a 2-on-0 towards the Wings netminder. Blake attempted a deke, but was stopped by Howard's right pad.
With 3:41 remaining in the third, Mike York buried his fourth goal of the season to put the Islanders ahead 2-1. Blake blasted a slap shot towards the net, which appeared to hit Trent Hunter in front. After hitting Hunter, York jumped on the loose puck and slammed it into the back of the net for the tally.
Detroit pulled Howard with about a minute left in the third, but the Islanders held off the Red Wings for the win.
YORK PLAYS IN 400TH GAME
When Mike York skated onto the ice at Joe Louis Arena tonight it marked his 400th NHL game. York, a veteran of six NHL seasons is in his first with the Islanders. He was acquired in a trade with the Edmonton Oilers last August.
"It's just great knowing you've played at a high enough level in NHL to be here for 400 games,' said York before the Islanders-Detroit game. "I hope to play in another 400 and more before I hang my skates up."
York was originally drafted by the New York Rangers in the sixth round (136 overall) in the 1997 NHL Entry Draft. He went onto play in 230 games for the Rangers before being traded to Edmonton in March of 2002. He played in 144 games with the Oilers. This season, he has played in all 26 games with the Islanders.
Earlier this season, York scored his 100th NHL goal in the Islanders 5-2 win over the Boston Bruins on Saturday, November 12, 2005 at the Nassau Coliseum. Entering tonight's contest, York has 102 goals and 146 assists for 248 points in his career.
Defenseman Bruno Gervais made his NHL debut tonight... It was the Islanders first win over Detroit since November 19, 1997...
Robert Nilsson tallied for the second-straight game in as many days with a pair of scores Sunday vs. Hartford - which turned out to be a 5-3 loss. The Swede also recorded a goal in his first game with the Bridgeport Sound Tigers on Saturday night, notching the first tally of the night in a 3-0 victory over the Philadelphia Phantoms. Nilsson corralled a swift pass from Jeff Hamilton for a tap-in powerplay goal. Rob Collins and Hamilton had the other scores while Wade Dubielewicz stopped 33 shots for the goose egg...
The thoughts and prayers of the hockey world continue to go out to Detroit defenseman Jiri Fischer. The Red Wing is recovering from two heart-related incidents during the last few weeks. He visited his Red Wings teammates Saturday morning at Joe Louis Arena. According to head coach Mike Babcock and teammates, Fischer doesn't sound as if he is through playing, either. "He said for sure he wants to be a hockey player," Babcock said told the Detroit News.
Fischer, 25, had a convulsion on the bench and his heart stopped during a game against Nashville on Nov. 21. He was revived that evening, with CPR and an auto defibrillator, by team doctor Anthony Colucci and trainer Piet Van Zandt.
On Monday, Fischer was rushed from his home to a hospital after he experienced discomfort because of a brief, abnormal cardiac rhythm (irregular heartbeat). He was released from the Detroit Medical Center on Wednesday morning...
Old friend Chris Osgood backed-up rookie Jimmy Howard for Detroit. It was Howard's third-straight game between the pipes for the Wings. Osgood hasn't played since defeating San Jose, 7-6, Nov. 26. Osgood was with the Islanders for a season and a half, from 2001-02 to 2002-03...
Petteri Nokelainen (knee), F Oleg Kvasha (ankle) and Shawn Bates (hamstring) were the Islanders' scratches.
(45) Arron Asham-(79) Alexei Yashin-(81) Miroslav Satan
(55) Jason Blake-(16) Mike York-(7) Trent Hunter
(11) Mattias Weinhandl-(28) Wyatt Smith-(37) Mark Parrish
(62) Kevin Colley-(49) Eric Godard
(77) Alexei Zhitnik-(3) Brent Sopel
(44) Janne Niinimaa-(25) Brad Lukowich
(14) Chris Campoli-(24) Radek Martinek
(6) Bruno Gervais
(39) Rick DiPietro
(30) Garth Snow
(40) Henrik Zetterberg-(21) Pavel Datsyuk-(96) Tomas Holmstrom
(37) Mikael Samuelsson-(33) Kris Draper-(14) Brendan Shanahan
(18) Kirk Maltby-(39) Johan Franzen-(29) Jason Williams
(44) Mark Mowers-(19) Steve Yzerman-(11) Dan Cleary
(5) Nicklas Lidstrom-(3) Andreas Lilja
(15) Jason Woolley-(24) Chris Chelios
(22) Brett Lebda-(23) Mathieu Schneider
(35) Jimmy Howard
(30) Chris Osgood