February 25, 2013

Canes Score Four Straight, Isles Drop Another Home Game

Despite taking a 2-0 lead in a period in which they were grossly out-shot, the Islanders gave up four unanswered goals to the Carolina Hurricanes, giving them the 4-2 victory as the Islanders perplexing play at home continued.

The Islanders had some solid moments where they had great board play and kept the puck deep, particularly in the second period. But with about 5 minutes remaining you could sense things were beginning to unravel, and a bad penalty call on Matt Martin didn't help matters. Naturally, the Canes got a goal from Eric Staal and the tailspin for the Isles was in full force.

Kevin Poulin would give up a very weak goal to Jordan Staal shortly after, allowing the Canes to tie it and walk into the break with all the momentum. Aside from this goal, I thought Poulin played pretty well despite some scary moments and gave his team a chance to win.

The Islanders loosened up on defense a bit and this made the job for the Canes easier as the Islanders seemingly had no answer for their transition game. As the third period drew on, several Islanders defensemen were caught in bad positions from trying to do too much and over-aggressive pinches, which is what helped give the Hurricanes the lead when Matt Moulson was forced to act as a defenseman. If there is one forward you don't want to see doing that, it's Moulson.

It wasn't all bad for him however as he did score a goal to get the scoring going for the Isles. John Tavares got the Isles other goal on a 2-on-1 break, with Tavares shifting his eyes and flinching ever so slightly to fool the defenseman into moving the other way. Tavares would roof the puck past Cam Ward.

Jack Capuano's post game press conference is somewhat concerning as he does call his team out for appearing "not excited" when he reminded them they were just two points out of a playoff spot. As angry as he was in the post game, it is alarming that his team couldn't 'get up' for a big game like this. And it's not only him; it falls on everyone - the other assistant coaches, the General Manager and the Owner.

After falling asleep and doing a lot of standing for much of the third period, the Islanders have to get back to the level of play seen in Buffalo and the last half of the game in Montreal if they are to have even a remote chance on Tuesday night against Boston.

- Chris

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