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Tavares has third four-point night of his career

Islanders center John Tavares put up two goals and two assists in the Islanders 5-1 win over the Tampa Bay Lightning on Thursday night

Thursday, 10.13.2011 / 10:47 PM / News
By Dyan LeBourdais
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Tavares has third four-point night of his career
After a week of having to field questions on why he hadn't put up any points in the Islanders' first two games, John Tavares answered with a statement game on Thursday night.

Tavares tallied four points in the Islanders 5-1 win over the Tampa Bay Lightning.

“He was John Tavares of last year and how he finished,” Islanders Head Coach Jack Capuano said. “The thing about Johnny is that he puts a lot of pressure on himself. Tonight he played relaxed and he went out and did the little things. I thought he had an excellent game. I thought he was the best player on the ice.”

John Tavares celebrates his second goal in the first period during the game against the Tampa Bay Lightning on October 13, 2011 at Nassau Coliseum. (Photo by Mike Stobe/NHLI via Getty Images)
It all began 36 seconds after the opening faceoff as Tavares converted for his first goal of the season and put the Islanders ahead 1-0. Sparking the chemistry and momentum they were hoping for, Tavares and his linemates would have the breakout night they were looking for – each of them would finish the night with a +4 rating.

“I know I wanted more shots on net, so I had a great chance there early on and a lucky bounce, but I think Matt (Moulson) was going to be there anyways to put in a rebound,” Tavares said. “We just did the right things and we fed off each other. We played a simple game. We got pucks to the net, went to the front of the net and got rewarded for it.”

The Islanders win over the Lightning put Moulson and Tavares on the scoresheet for the first time this season. Capuano said he didn’t want to put pressure on them because he knew the points would come, adding “It’s got to come natural for them.”

Matt Moulson knocked in a Tavares rebound (9:28), Tavares scored his second goal of the night (15:15), and then the Isles center sent PA Parenteau in for his first goal of the season (18:39). Including goals and assists, the Moulson-Tavares-Parenteau line put up eight points in the first period.

“I felt like our timing was a lot better today,” Moulson said of his line’s chemistry. “We worked hard in that first period to get ourselves going and sometimes all you need is a lucky goal like that first one Johnny got. Right after he scored, I said, ‘that’s definitely going to spark us’ and it did.”

Although their line wouldn’t convert on any of their opportunities in the final 40 minutes, that energy carried through the second and the third. Tavares played well at all ends of the ice, posting four shots, two takeaways, and two penalties (one of which was a minor for roughing).

Early in the second period, Lightning defenseman Victor Hedman sent Tavares sliding into the boards. After the hit, the Isles center skated slowly to the bench. However, he wouldn’t miss a shift. At 7:38 of the third period, he’d get even. Tavares and Hedman would each take minor penalties for roughing.

More nights like Thursday are exactly what Tavares will need to top his totals from seasons past.

“The sky is the limit for this guy,” Parenteau said of Tavares. “He’s a great player. He’s got tremendous hands, a great shot. He’s fun to play with.”

SCHEDULE

HOME
AWAY
PROMOTIONAL

STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 TBL 50 31 15 4 163 132 66
2 MTL 47 31 13 3 127 108 65
3 NYI 48 32 15 1 157 135 65
4 DET 49 28 12 9 145 128 65
5 PIT 48 27 13 8 143 124 62
6 WSH 48 25 14 9 144 124 59
7 BOS 49 26 16 7 131 123 59
8 NYR 46 27 15 4 135 111 58
9 FLA 46 21 15 10 114 129 52
10 PHI 50 21 22 7 139 151 49
11 TOR 50 22 24 4 144 155 48
12 OTT 47 19 19 9 129 134 47
13 CBJ 47 21 23 3 119 148 45
14 NJD 48 18 22 8 109 135 44
15 CAR 47 17 25 5 102 122 39
16 BUF 48 14 31 3 90 171 31

STATS

2014-2015 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
J. Tavares 48 23 25 -1 48
K. Okposo 46 14 30 -2 44
R. Strome 48 9 25 16 34
B. Nelson 48 15 15 5 30
F. Nielsen 48 9 17 4 26
J. Boychuk 38 4 21 16 25
J. Bailey 36 8 14 7 22
N. Leddy 48 7 14 14 21
N. Kulemin 48 11 9 0 20
A. Lee 42 13 5 6 18
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
J. Halak 26 10 0 .912 2.42
C. Johnson 6 5 0 .870 3.38

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