Jan 23, 2014, 10:36 PM EDT
It’s anyone’s guess if the New York Islanders can surge to a playoff spot this season – don’t look at Sports Club Stats, Isles fans – but Thursday’s game against the Pittsburgh Penguins evoked the two teams’ high-flying 2013 playoff series. Unfortunately for John Tavares & Co, that also meant they lost, as Pittsburgh prevailed 6-4.
The Islanders charged out to a 2-0 lead thanks to goals by Michael Grabner and Brock Nelson, but that margin lasted just a little more than three minutes, as Sidney Crosby assisted on a Chris Kunitz goal and scored one of his own. Crosby collected three points overall, expanding his league-leading total to a whopping 72 points.
Ultimately, the Penguins out-gunned the Isles in a thriller of a game, as Pittsburgh’s top guys came through. The larger stats really highlight the Penguins’ dominance (via Liam McHugh during the NBCSN telecast):
- The Penguins have taken seven straight regular season series against the Isles.
- The Pens are 28-8-2 against the Isles in the two teams’ last 38 contests.
- Pittsburgh’s been strong lately, too, with wins in four of five games.
As fun as this contest was to watch, the Islanders have a long way to make it to the playoffs once again. The Penguins highlighted that difference on Thursday.
- On carrying three goalies, and which teams might be forced to do it 2
- Bettman: NHL won’t expand ‘just to fulfill somebody’s notion of symmetry’ 8
- Report: Johansen lowers demands, but not low enough 32
- Injuries piling up as preseason schedule begins 11
- Report: Fedorov denies contract offer was made to Johansen 8
- Report: Johansen has gotten no shortage of KHL offers 44
- Update: Drouin out with upper body injury, not expected to miss preseason 1
- Report: NHL officials to participate in preseason without new CBA 1
- Evander Kane: I know I can score 50 goals 16
- ‘C’-less Thornton comes out swing against Wilson’s ‘tomorrow team’ talk 19
- Heeeeeere’s Johnny! Davidson shreds Johansen’s agent for ‘baffling, nonsensical’ contract demands (65)
- Jackets reveal Johansen offers — including an eight year, $46M deal (55)
- Report: Johansen has gotten no shortage of KHL offers (44)
- No icing on the PK? The USHL will see how that looks (43)
- Just how damaging are heated negotiations between Jackets, RFA Johansen? (38)