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It was a night of firsts for the Islanders who put an end to Colorado's three-game win streak on Saturday night at the Coliseum.

Sunday, 10.17.2010 / 12:06 AM / News
By Dyan LeBourdais
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Hearing that a team is on a three-game road winning streak may be a little intimidating, especially when you know you’re the next team on their schedule. But when you’re the New York Islanders, that statistic just raises the level of play.

“I think it’s not so much they’ve come to it now,” said Islanders head coach Scott Gordon about the teams’ winning mentality. “I think they came to training camp with the idea, ‘You know what, we are going to win. Enough’s enough and now it’s time to play with confidence and now maybe what other people don’t know is that we’ve got more than just potential. We have abilities.’ ”

And Saturday night that’s exactly what the Islanders showed in their 5-2 victory over the Colorado Avalanche. With two goals from defenseman Milan Jurcina coming less than five minutes apart in the second period and then a fast power play goal from Josh Bailey to top it off, the Avalanche seemingly had no chance at a victory inside the Nassau Coliseum.

And while the second period was fast paced, the first was scoreless with out many scoring opportunities by either team. But it was the Islanders who regrouped and stuck to their game plan, giving Avalanche their second loss this season (3-2-0) as well as propelling their home winning streak against the Avalanche to six.

“You don’t want to find yourself in holes, losing two or three in a row,” said Islanders forward John Tavares. “It was a great bounce back for us tonight, to get a big win and two points. There aren’t (that) many home games the next few weeks so it’s always important to play strong at home and make it tough for teams when they come here.”

One of the biggest story lines has been about the quality of Josh Bailey’s game this season. The forward has clearly learned a lot in his young professional career and has begun his third season with the club by establishing himself as one of the Islanders top forwards. It was huge when he tallied the Islanders third goal of the game while on the power play.

As the Avalanche struggled to kill the penalty, Wisniewski passed the puck to PA Parenteau just on top of the goal line and set Bailey up in front of the net to wrist the puck up and over the shoulder of Colorado’s goaltender Craig Anderson.

“I think it’s just Josh (Bailey) being one more year mature,” said goaltender Dwayne Roloson. “He’s not complacent and he knows what he has to do to score goals and get his linemates opportunities to get points. He’s working hard and it’s great to see. He’s a great person off the ice and he’s a great teammate. I’m so happy for him that he’s having the start that he’s having.”

Before Bailey was able to score the game winner, Islanders defenseman Milan Jurcina tallied the Islanders first two goals of the game and his first of the season.

Exactly one minute after Andrew MacDonald found himself in the penalty box for cross-checking, Bailey won the faceoff from the right circle in front of Anderson and passed the puck off the boards deflecting back to Jurcina, who took the slapshot for the Islanders first shorthanded goal of the season.

There’s no question he’s (Milan Jurcina has) probably one of the hardest shots. Dean (Chynoweth) joked with me that had that missed the net, it probably would have gone around the rink twice. - Scott Gordon
“There’s no question he’s (got) probably one of the hardest shots,” Gordon said about Jurcina. “Dean (Chynoweth) joked with me that had that missed the net, it probably would have gone around the rink twice.”

But that wasn’t Jurcina’s only point in the game, as he scored his second goal at 18:01 of the second when he shot from about two feet out front of the goal line along the boards, trickling in past Anderson. The defenseman also tallied an assist on the final score of the game when Tavares earned his first point of the season after sliding the puck into an empty net with 20 seconds left in regulation.

Jurcina and Tavares weren’t the only one to tally firsts in Saturday night’s game. Michael Grabner showed what Islanders General Manager saw in the forward when he picked him up off waivers this preseason.

Grabner, alongside PA Parenteau, showed his speed in a two-on-two rush down ice. Just before reaching Anderson, Parenteau made a beautiful pass right on Grabner’s stick for a tip past the Colorado goaltender at 4:11.

“This is a kid that, with the style we play, (Grabner) should be able to flourish,” Gordon said. “His speed, he’s got good skill. We’re working him slowly. Ideally we’d like to be able to get him into some special teams situations. I’ve found him to be a low maintenance guy that just wants to get the opportunity to play and he’s going to get it.”

Even though the Isles tallied three straight goals in the second period, the Avalanche didn’t give up, coming back in the third period to score two goals. Chris Stewart tallied Colorado’s first goal of the night at 2:19 of the final period, while TJ Galiardi tallied the second at 10:08.

Winning the game couldn’t have been a possibility without an outstanding performance in goal from Roloson, who saw 30 shots and made 28 saves. Even though Roloson had a lot to do with the Islanders second regulation victory of the season, the goaltender is extremely humble and really just cares about helping his teammates be the best team they can be.

“It’s huge for our team,” Roloson said about the win. “We’ve talked from the beginning of the year, from our veterans down to our younger guys, about trying not to lose back-to-back games, try to nip it in the bud early and we were able to succeed tonight. Coming out of a start that we had, we’re looking pretty good right now.”

The Islanders leave for a four-game road trip on Sunday afternoon, making their first stop in Toronto, before playing their next game at home on Oct. 29 against the Canadiens.




1 MTL 63 41 17 5 171 139 87
2 NYI 65 41 21 3 207 182 85
3 NYR 62 39 17 6 196 153 84
4 TBL 65 39 20 6 213 171 84
5 DET 61 35 15 11 180 159 81
6 PIT 62 36 17 9 181 155 81
7 WSH 65 35 20 10 193 162 80
8 BOS 62 31 22 9 165 161 71
9 FLA 64 28 23 13 156 181 69
10 PHI 64 27 25 12 170 186 66
11 OTT 61 27 23 11 173 166 65
12 NJD 64 27 27 10 144 165 64
13 TOR 64 26 33 5 173 195 57
14 CBJ 63 26 33 4 163 201 56
15 CAR 62 24 31 7 144 167 55
16 BUF 64 19 40 5 123 215 43


J. Tavares 65 30 35 4 65
K. Okposo 46 14 30 -2 44
R. Strome 65 14 28 23 42
B. Nelson 65 17 20 7 37
F. Nielsen 65 11 25 13 36
A. Lee 59 21 13 13 34
J. Bailey 53 13 19 11 32
J. Boychuk 55 7 23 14 30
N. Leddy 65 8 18 16 26
T. Hamonic 55 4 21 16 25
J. Halak 33 13 1 .911 2.47
C. Johnson 8 8 1 .889 3.08 is the official Web site of the New York Islanders Hockey Club, L.P. and are trademarks of New York Islanders Hockey Club, L.P.  NHL, the NHL Shield, the word mark and image of the Stanley Cup and NHL Conference logos are registered trademarks of the National Hockey League. All NHL logos and marks and NHL team logos and marks as well as all other proprietary materials depicted herein are the property of the NHL and the respective NHL teams and may not be reproduced without the prior written consent of NHL Enterprises, L.P. Copyright © 1999-2015 New York Islanders Hockey Club, L.P. and the National Hockey League. All Rights Reserved.

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