Allowing two early goals to the Senators was too much for the Isles as they fell 6-0 on Monday afternoon at Nassau Coliseum.
The Senators came out with a purpose and Erik Karlsson scored his first of two goals at 1:08. Twenty-seven seconds later, Jason Spezza chased Islanders goalie Kevin Poulin.
“There wasn’t any intensity in our game,” Mark Streit said. “We can’t start a game like that, down two goals right away. We didn’t find a way to respond and get back in the game.”
Things didn’t get any easier for Al Montoya, who faced 10 shots and allowed the second Karlsson goal before the first period ended. Midway through the second period Chris Phillips extended the Ottawa lead to 4-0 with a power play goal.
The Islanders frustrations were personified by PA Parenteau, who was given a 10-minute unsportsmanlike misconduct in the first period. Parenteau finished the game from the locker room after receiving a game misconduct at 9:49 of the third period.
The Senators did not let up in the third period, scoring two more goals as time wound down. Brian Lee scored his first goal of the season at 9:49 and Spezza hammered home his second goal 1:08 later. Assisting on Lee and Spezza’s goals, Karlsson finished the game with four points.
Jack Capuano said that the coaching staff had to take some responsibility for the slow start, but that with 57 minutes of hockey left to play he wanted to see more physicality from the players.
“At this time of the year you need physicality,” Capuano said. “You have to pay the price. I’ll never ask anybody to fight but we weren’t physical enough. We need an injection in our lineup, we need something to happen here. We can’t have the emotion that we had on the bench here tonight.”
Craig Anderson wasn’t the busiest goalie on Monday, seeing 10 shots through the first two periods, but stopped 18 in the third en route to his third shutout of the season. Montoya made 23 saves in relief.
After posting a 7-5-1 record in January, the Islanders have yet to win back-to-back games in February, alternating wins and losses in their last 10 games. Ottawa widens the gap to 12 points over the Islanders with two meetings left between the two clubs. The Islanders remain six points back of the Toronto Maple Leafs, but lose their game in hand.
The Islanders get a chance at redemption tomorrow night as they travel to Buffalo for their fourth and final meeting with the Sabres. Puck drop is 7 p.m. from the First Niagara Center.