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Islanders help out Rangers, beat Penguins in home-and-home set

Mar 29, 2012, 9:47 PM EDT

The Pittsburgh Penguins seem primed for a tough first round matchup against the Philadelphia Flyers, but one could argue that they’re glad the New York Islanders won’t make the playoffs. The Isles landed two crushing blows on the Penguins’ Atlantic Division title hopes this week as they took another regulation win tonight by a score of 5-3.

That matches the 5-3 score from the Islanders’ road win against the Penguins on Tuesday, holding Pittsburgh to 100 standings points – five behind the just-as-hated New York Rangers.

Some Islanders fans will probably find it bittersweet, but considering the slugfest from 2010-11, it’s obvious that New York has no love for the Penguins. (Even if they don’t have the same inner-state rivalry going.)

Josh Bailey has been especially hot lately, factoring into all five Islanders goals with two tallies and three assists tonight. That gives him a staggering eight points in those two contests against Pittsburgh, extending his points streak to six games (four goals, 10 assists for 14 points) and giving the team something to look forward to in 2012-13.

On the bright side for the Penguins, it seemed that Sidney Crosby dodged a bullet by recovering quickly after taking a puck to the face. There might be some panic for the less patient in Pittsburgh, but that nice break highlights the fact that things could get much, much worse.

  1. bcisleman - Mar 29, 2012 at 9:59 PM

    Now all the Isles need is a coach who can motivate them to play this well when it really counts.

  2. stakex - Mar 29, 2012 at 11:19 PM

    Wow, when I saw these two games on the schedual for Pit earlier this week I figured they had 4 points in the bank and that the game between the Rangers and Pens was going to be huge. Now, after a second choke job in a row, the Rangers can all but coast to the top seed. And make no mistake about it, losing back to back games against the 13th place team is nothing short of a strait up choke job when your trying to chase down the top spot.

  3. dgbk - Mar 30, 2012 at 12:40 AM

    i guess everything in this day in age is considered choking… they are in triple digits in pts if they fall short i still wouldnt consider it choking …. they are in the playoffs and still a cup favorite…. home ice advantage dont mean much… i doubt the rangers or blues make it out their conference

  4. spizzjr - Mar 30, 2012 at 1:00 AM

    Um they lost because they underestimated their opponents not because they choked… Most teams don’t just let marty reasoner glide into the slot..that’s why he has one goal on the year…. All the scoring in the second game was done without John Tavares Matt Moulson or PA Parenteau… The entire team is in the NHL because they played well enough to get there if you take any team lightly they can light you up at any given moment… Just saying if the isles can get a solid NHL defenseman this offseason and teams continue to call them “doormats” they WILL make the playoffs next year

    • jpelle82 - Mar 30, 2012 at 9:35 AM

      i think the islanders will be contending soon dont know about next year but soon. if they fix their goalie issues, dump RDP’s contract somehow, and get a true defensive standout they should be in the mix in the next 2 years i would think. the will be like the caps and pens once these high draft picks start developing, they unfortunately missed with RDP where the pens got a good goalie in fleury, i think that makes all the difference…their skaters will develop and they will have another high draft pick again this year too

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