Saturday, May 04, 2013

New York Islanders Gain A Split In Pittsburgh With Huge 4-3 Win


Penguins        3
Series Tied 1-1

NEW YORK ISLANDERS - We Have A Series!  Isles Take Game Two In Pittsburgh, Gain Road Split.  Next Stop - Long Island.

After going down 2-0 to the Penguins in Pittsburgh just over three minutes into the game, it seemed a perfect time for Long Island to lie down.  Then after falling behind 3-1 after twenty-minutes, with two goals already coming from Sidney Crosby in his first game back from a broken face, it seemed like a perfect time to just punch out, or punch him.  But twenty shots on goal by the Isles were telling a different story.  The Penguins took twelve shots by comparison.  Matt Moulson scored on what is a good Islander PP unit to keep the period respectable.

Then at just 5:12 of the second period, Colin McDonald gained the crowd's attention when he stuffed a puck past Marc Andre Fleury to make it a 3-2 game.  That came on the heels of Kyle Okposo's first ever fight, as he got in some knuckles in against Matt Niskanen.  In fact, the Islanders spent a lot of time in the Pens zone after the fight.  A little later on, when Sindy Crosby got rolled by Brian Strait, Ivgeni Malken got whistled after sticking up for his girlfriend, and the Igloo fans started littering the ice with stuff.  Sensing the home town situation was rattled, Matt Martin tied the game at three goals each at the 10:37 mark of the period.  Shots on goal were a lot more even during the second twenty minutes of play.  But the Islanders were alive and well, and had the Pittsburgh crowd in a really foul mood.  Ivgeni Nabokov made thirteen saves in the second session.  Long Island took fourteen shots against Fleury.

Playing in only his sixth period of playoff hockey, Kyle Okposo translated all his game energy into an ugly, Fleury gaffe, go-ahead goal at the 12:23 mark.  And that's the way this game finished - effectively wiping out a drubbing the Isles suffered in Game One.

Ivgeni Nabokov rebounded from a sub-par Game One, in which he may also have had his bell rung via a puck to the head.  Friday, he made thirty stops in thirty-three chances.  He remained perfect after the Pen's three early first period goals.  The Islanders took forty-two shots on goal.  Fleury made thirty-eight saves.  The Islanders can stand to win some more face-offs though.

It's never a series until the home team loses a game.  Both teams travel back to Long Island now for Games Three and Four.


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