Islanders late rally falls short

Grabner and Tavares score 35 seconds apart in the final minutes

Thursday, 03.15.2012 / 10:40 PM ET / News
By Cory Wright
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Islanders late rally falls short


The New York Islanders made a furious push in the final six and a half minutes of the third period against the Philadelphia Flyers, but fell 3-2 to their division rivals Thursday night at Nassau Coliseum.

The Islanders trailed 3-0 entering the final seven minutes, but Michael Grabner and John Tavares scored 35 seconds apart, sending a jolt of energy through the team.  

John Tavares cut the Flyers lead to 3-2 with his goal at 14:05 of the third.

“We didn’t get the results we wanted,” Matt Martin said. “But when we finally beat [Ilya Bryzgalov] I think we had some life in the arena and the fans were great in the last 10 minutes. It got us going again.”

Scott Hartnell’s second period goal -  a high wrist shot that beat Evgeni Nabokov glove side - held up as the game-winner for the Flyers. At that point, the goal appeared to be an insurance marker, before the Islanders kicked into high gear and found their scoring touch.

“We saw how when we forecheck how successful we can be,” Mark Streit said. “But 10 minutes out of 60 minutes is just not enough against a team like Philadelphia.”

The loss is the Islanders fifth in a row and their second straight against the Flyers. Enforcer Zac Rinaldo opened the scoring Thursday at 8:41 of the first period, throwing a puck on net from a sharp angle that snuck past Evgeni Nabokov.

The Flyers top line widened the gap before the end of the period, as Jaromir Jagr walked out of the corner and fed Claude Giroux, who one-timed a shot stick side on Nabokov. 

The Islanders had an opportunity to answer back at the end of the second period with a 3:58 power play, but could not take advantage of the man advantage. 

“We gave them two gifts,” a fired-up Jack Capuano said after the game. “I thought we could have got some momentum back late in the second period when we had back-to-back power plays, and we didn’t execute at all.”

Bryzgalov entered the game with three consecutive shutouts and was 6:30 away from his fourth clean sheet. Grabner ended the Russian netminder’s streak at 2:49:43, deflecting a Streit slap-pass from the point. Thirty-five seconds later, Streit set up Tavares in front of the net for his 31st goal, but that is as close as the Islanders would get.

After Thursday’s loss, the Islanders embark on a five game, two-week road trip starting in Montreal on Saturday night. Action gets under way at the Bell Centre at 7 p.m.

SCHEDULE

HOME
AWAY
PROMOTIONAL

STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 x - MTL 76 47 21 8 200 169 102
2 x - NYR 74 47 20 7 226 172 101
3 TBL 76 46 23 7 244 198 99
4 PIT 75 41 23 11 207 188 93
5 NYI 76 44 27 5 230 211 93
6 DET 74 40 22 12 216 201 92
7 WSH 75 40 25 10 218 186 90
8 BOS 75 37 25 13 199 195 87
9 OTT 74 37 25 12 216 199 86
10 FLA 75 34 26 15 186 205 83
11 PHI 76 30 29 17 198 219 77
12 CBJ 75 36 35 4 207 232 76
13 NJD 75 31 32 12 167 192 74
14 CAR 74 28 36 10 173 202 66
15 TOR 76 28 42 6 198 244 62
16 BUF 75 20 47 8 144 254 48

STATS

2014-2015 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
J. Tavares 76 34 40 -3 74
R. Strome 75 15 32 19 47
K. Okposo 54 15 31 -10 46
F. Nielsen 75 13 28 9 41
B. Nelson 76 18 22 9 40
A. Lee 70 23 16 12 39
J. Bailey 64 15 23 4 38
J. Boychuk 66 8 25 9 33
T. Hamonic 66 5 25 16 30
N. Leddy 72 10 19 15 29
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
J. Halak 35 16 2 .915 2.39
C. Johnson 8 8 1 .889 3.08

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