Making the necessary adjustments

The Islanders must be more disciplined moving forward, following a Game 3 in which Pittsburgh went 3-for-5 on the power play

Monday, 05.6.2013 / 3:50 PM ET / News
By Travis Betts
X
Share with your Friends


Making the necessary adjustments
The Islanders must be more disciplined moving forward, following a Game 3 in which Pittsburgh went 3-for-5 on the power play
A big part of keeping the Penguins' power play at bay, Andrew MacDonald says, is to cut down on taking bad penalties (Photo: Getty Images).

After allowing three goals to the Penguins power play in Game 3, the Islanders focus in Monday’s team meetings was staying out of the penalty box in Game 4.

“We’ve got to be more disciplined - there’s no question,” Head Coach Jack Capuano said. “[Pittsburgh] has gotten quite a few goals on the power play. The penalty kill is something we’ve got to clean up. But discipline with and without the puck is a big part of the game, and with their quickness we’ve got to make sure we defend a little bit harder and a little bit smarter.”

The Islanders took six minor penalties in Game 3’s 5-4 overtime loss, and have been on the penalty kill 13 times in the series (4.3 times per game), a significant uptick from their regular season average of less than three times per game. As a result, the Pittsburgh power play, which ranked second in the NHL during the regular season at 24.7%, has struck six times during the series.

“Our penalty kill has to be better,” defenseman Andrew MacDonald said. “The best way to do that is to stay out of the box and not take the undisciplined penalties. Those can end up killing us. There’s a lot of things that play into it, but first and foremost, you’ve got to be mentally aware of not taking a bad penalty. You have to realize that you’re putting your team at a disadvantage. Being in the right positions, being aware and keeping our feet moving are going to be keys going into Game 4.”

Emotions have run high in the series, as the physical play has amped up from the regular season. Often times, one hard hit results in a retaliatory shot from an opposing player, and that’s something Travis Hamonic says the Islanders need to be wary of going forward.

“There’s obviously a fine line to cross, and you don’t want to get caught up in the emotion of the game and do something stupid,” Hamonic said. “It seems like the retaliatory hits are always the ones that get called, it’s not the first ones. Obviously their power play is going pretty well right now, and as a group collectively I think we’ve got to do a better job with discipline all over the ice and within our system as well.”

As Hamonic continued to explain, that doesn’t mean lightening up on the physical play. It just means being able to toe the line between right and wrong.

“When we have an opportunity to be tough on them and hit them, we need to be hard in the corners and grind them down,” Hamonic said. “We can still do a little bit better of a job with that. Obviously you’ve got to watch the fine line that you’re on and try not to cross it.”

The coaching staff also went over some different tactics for the penalty kill moving forward. After going through video meetings Monday morning, it was clear the Islanders have a plan for the Penguins power play this time around.

But good luck getting that information out of Hamonic.

“I don’t want to share secrets,” Hamonic said. “But there’s some areas that we know internally, we have to improve on. We want to keep that amongst each other right now.”

Game 4 is scheduled for 7:00 p.m. Tuesday at Nassau Coliseum. If the Islanders win, they will tie the series at two games apiece, guaranteeing at least a Game 6 back at the Coliseum on May 11.

SCHEDULE

HOME
AWAY
PROMOTIONAL

STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 x - MTL 77 47 22 8 203 174 102
2 x - NYR 75 47 21 7 228 177 101
3 x - TBL 77 47 23 7 249 201 101
4 PIT 76 42 23 11 210 190 95
5 NYI 77 45 27 5 235 215 95
6 DET 75 40 23 12 220 206 92
7 WSH 76 41 25 10 223 188 92
8 BOS 76 38 25 13 201 196 89
9 OTT 75 37 26 12 218 203 86
10 FLA 76 35 26 15 190 207 85
11 PHI 76 30 29 17 198 219 77
12 CBJ 75 36 35 4 207 232 76
13 NJD 76 31 33 12 168 194 74
14 CAR 75 28 36 11 174 204 67
15 TOR 76 28 42 6 198 244 62
16 BUF 76 21 47 8 148 255 50

STATS

2014-2015 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
J. Tavares 77 34 43 -2 77
R. Strome 76 16 32 20 48
K. Okposo 55 16 31 -11 47
F. Nielsen 76 14 28 8 42
B. Nelson 77 19 22 7 41
A. Lee 71 23 16 10 39
J. Bailey 65 15 23 3 38
J. Boychuk 67 8 25 9 33
N. Leddy 73 10 21 14 31
T. Hamonic 67 5 26 16 31
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
J. Halak 36 16 2 .913 2.42
C. Johnson 8 8 1 .889 3.08

NewYorkIslanders.com is the official Web site of the New York Islanders Hockey Club, L.P. and NewYorkIslanders.com 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.

Privacy Policy |  AdChoices |  Terms of Use |  Contact  Us |  Employment |  Webmaster |  NHL.com Terms of Use