Nilsson records 24 saves and shuts out Devils in first NHL win

Kyle Okposo's fifteenth goal of the year holds up as winner

Sunday, 03.4.2012 / 5:00 PM ET / News
By Cory Wright
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Nilsson records 24 saves and shuts out Devils in first NHL win

Anders Nilsson turned in a 24-save shutout to earn his first career NHL win, as the New York Islanders beat the New Jersey Devils, 1-0, on Sunday in front of a sold out crowd at Nassau Coliseum.

PA Parenteau and Mark Streit celebrate Anders Nilsson's first NHL win. He's the first goalie in Isles history to record his first win with a shutout.
Kyle Okposo scored the game's only goal at 2:39 of the second period, as the Islanders won back-to-back games for the first time in more than a month. Making his second career NHL start and third appearance, Nilsson made half of his saves in the third period against the Devils' frantic attack.

“I thank all the guys,” Nilsson said. “They blocked a lot of shots and when a shot got through, it was from the boards. They made it really easy for me to play out there today.”

The Islanders blocked 27 shots, but gave the AHL goalie of the month for February credit for the win.

“I don’t think he was ever out of position once,” Okposo said. “When you practice with a guy like that and struggle to score in practice, you know that he has some talent. Tonight he showed it.”

On his 15th goal of the seaon, Okposo pushed his way through several Devils before snapping a shot along the ice past Martin Brodeur's outstretched pad. It was Okposo's second goal in three games and Casey Cizikas recorded his third assist in that same span.

“I was trying to walk off out of the corner,” Okposo said. “There were a bunch of sticks around there, so once I got a good handle on it, I just fired it.”

The Islanders strung together back-to-back wins for the first time since Jan. 21 and did so against two of the Eastern Conference’s top eight teams in Boston and New Jersey.

“I would say that we are focused,” Jack Capuano said. “It’s about focus, attention to detail and having the passion and desire to play every single night. We had some energy tonight and that carried over [from Saturday’s 3-2 win over Boston].”  

The Devils gave the Islanders five power plays to work with on Sunday, including 5-on-3 and 4-on-3 opportunities. The Isles could not convert, but had several quality chances that saw the puck roll behind Brodeur before fluttering wide of the post. Brodeur made 24 saves in the loss and fell to 0-2 against the Isles this season.

After playing three games in four days, the Islanders have three days off before renewing acquaintances with the Devils on Thursday at Prudential Center. Sunday was the first of three games in seven days between the division foes.

“It’s obviously tough to beat teams twice in a row, let alone three times in a row,” Okposo said. “We are going to have to be prepared for the next 120 minutes.”

The next chapter in the trilogy goes Thursday night at 7 p.m.  





SCHEDULE

HOME
AWAY
PROMOTIONAL

STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 p - NYR 82 53 22 7 252 192 113
2 y - MTL 82 50 22 10 221 189 110
3 x - TBL 82 50 24 8 262 211 108
4 x - WSH 82 45 26 11 242 203 101
5 x - NYI 82 47 28 7 252 230 101
6 x - DET 82 43 25 14 235 221 100
7 x - OTT 82 43 26 13 238 215 99
8 x - PIT 82 43 27 12 221 210 98
9 BOS 82 41 27 14 213 211 96
10 FLA 82 38 29 15 206 223 91
11 CBJ 82 42 35 5 236 250 89
12 PHI 82 33 31 18 215 234 84
13 NJD 82 32 36 14 181 216 78
14 CAR 82 30 41 11 188 226 71
15 TOR 82 30 44 8 211 262 68
16 BUF 82 23 51 8 161 274 54

STATS

2014-2015 PLAYOFFS
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
J. Tavares 7 2 4 2 6
J. Bailey 7 2 3 1 5
N. Leddy 7 0 5 0 5
R. Strome 7 2 2 1 4
K. Okposo 7 2 1 1 3
C. Clutterbuck 7 2 1 1 3
B. Nelson 6 2 0 1 2
F. Nielsen 7 1 1 -1 2
N. Kulemin 7 1 1 0 2
L. Visnovsky 4 0 2 5 2
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
J. Halak 3 4 1 .926 2.30
M. Neuvirth 0 0 0 1.000 0.00

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