Game Recap: Red Wings 4 – Islanders 1

Recap: The Islanders lost to the Red Wings 4-1 this afternoon in Detroit.

Need to know: Tomas Tatar got the scoring going quickly in the first period for the Red Wings as they jumped out to an early lead. Brendan Smith added a one-timer goal with just 47 seconds remaining in the second period to make it a two goal deficit.

Lubomir Visnovsky scored the Islanders lone goal in the third period on a power play to make it a 2-1 game. But the Red Wings finished strong as Jonathon Ericcson and Gustav Nyquist scored goals down the stretch to close out a 4-1 victory.

Islanders goalie Chad Johnson recorded 15 saves on 19 shots.

The Islanders have now lost two straight games.

Links: AP Recap | Box Score

What’s next: The Islanders will host the Florida Panthers Tuesday night at 7 p.m.

Game day (49): Islanders at Red Wings, 2 pm

Joe Louis Arena — Detroit, MI
TV: MSG Plus Radio: WRHU 88.7 FM, WRCN 103.9 FM

The Least You Should Know About the Red Wings… Detroit enters Saturday afternoon’s contest off a loss to the Tampa Lightning on Thursday. Prior to that the Red Wings had been on a six game win streak… Henrik Zetterberg leads the Red Wings in points with 45 (15 goals, 30 assists) in 49 games this season. Tomas Tatar holds the team lead in goals with 21… Detroit recalled defenseman Alexey Marchenko from AHL Grand Rapids of Friday.

Christian Arnold, Islanders Point Blank:

The Islanders success against the Detroit Red Wings has been pretty well documented.

They are hoping to keep their success going when they face the Red Wings this afternoon. The Isles are 1-1 in their first two games since the All-Star break. A 4-1 win against the Rangers was dampened a bit by the 5-2 loss they to the Boston Bruins Thursday.

Casey Cizikas was also banged up during the Boston loss and may miss Saturday’s contest. The Islanders recalled Colin McDonald from Bridgeport, but Islanders’ Coach Jack Capuano would not say if he would play.

Capuano will address reporters at noon to discuss the lineup and upcoming matchup.

If Cizikas does not play, Ryan Strome will likely take his place as the fourth line center. The fourth line has been a big part of the Islanders’ success this season and their aggressive, up-tempo style has given opposing teams fits. The mindset of the two other members of that line will not change too much if Strome is there, according to Matt Martin.

“I think for me and [Cal Clutterbuck] we play the same way,” Martin explained. “You might put the puck in [Strome’s] hands a little bit more, because he’s a guy that loves to possess the puck. He has a ton of talent and sees the ice so well and can make a lot of plays. It changes the dynamic a little bit I think. Me, Casey and Clutter really like to chip pucks in and grind it down and cycle the puck. Where I think with Strome we’ll focus on getting him the puck and getting open.

“…We’ll  try and get open for him, get to the net, be physical and get some room for him if he happens to be on our line.”

Colin McDoanld will also likely be in the lineup if Cizikas is out. He practiced on Friday with the third line.

The Red Wings will have Petr Mrazek start in goal. He is 10-4-1 in 16 appearances this season.

Visnovsky activated off injured reserve

Defenseman Lubomir Visnovsky has been activated off the injured reserve list by the Islanders, the team announced Saturday morning. Visnovsky has been on IR since January 4 with an upper body injury.

The Islander defenseman will likely appear in Saturday’s game against the Detroit Red Wings at Joe Louis Arena. Head coach Jack Capuano will address reporters at noon with the Islanders’ lineup. Visnovsky has recored 11 points (three goals, eight assists) in 29 games this season.

Cizikas’ status unknown for game in Detroit

Christian Arnold, Islanders Point Blank:

UNIONDALE, N.Y. – The Status of Casey Cizikis is still unknown as the Islanders prepare for their Saturday afternoon date with the Detroit Red Wings.NHL: New York Islanders at New York Rangers

Cizikas, who was in visible pain after blocking a shot during Thursday’s loss to the Boston Bruins, did not practice with the Islanders on Friday. The team also called up forward Colin McDonald on emergency recall.

Head coach Jack Capuano called Cizikas’s absence a “maintenance day.” Cizikas will likely make the trip to Detroit with the rest of his teammates, but who will be in the lineup on Saturday is unclear.

Colin McDonald’s presence would suggest that Cizikas might not play, but the Islanders were likely going to call up an extra forward regardless. With Both Kyle Okposo and Eric Boulton placed on injured reserve on Tuesday, the Isles were only left with 12 healthy forwards.

“We’re going on the road and a few guys got some bumps and bruises,” Capuano said. “So we just want to make sure we have an extra player.”

McDonald spent the morning skating on the wing of Brock Nelson and Michael Grabner. Capuano moved Ryan Strome to fourth line center to take Cizikas’s spot.

If McDonald plays on Saturday, it will be the first time since he’s suited up for the Islanders on October 21 against the Toronto Maple Leafs.

“If he plays you know what you’re getting,” Capuano said about McDonald. “He played with us last year. He understands the system, understands the way we need him to play and he’s a hard nose guy. He’s gone down to Bridgeport and done everything we asked him to do.

“…If he gets the opportunity I know he’ll go in and work hard for us.”

Below are the lines from Friday’s practice at Nassau Coliseum:

Josh Bailey-John Tavares-Mikhail Grabovski
Anders Lee-Frans Nielsen-Nikolay Kulemin
Michael Grabner-Brock Nelson-Colin McDonald
Cal Clutterbuck-Ryan Strome-Matt Martin

Power play and penalty kill report card, presented by Long Island University

Christian Arnold, Islanders Point Blank:

The Islanders special teams continues to be the achilles heel of the 2014-15 season. Both the power play and penalty kill have struggled to get momentum going during the course of the season.

Long Island University SmallThe Islanders power play went 0-for-2 on Thursday night during the team’s 5-2 loss to the Boston Bruins. They failed to generate many chances during the man advantage — something thats been an ongoing issue — and the Islanders seemed hesitant to put shots on net. The Islanders reluctance to take shots and their desire to set up the perfect play has limited the chances they have gotten. In the last five games, the Isles power play has capitalized on just four of 15 chances.

The penalty kill has faired better this season. During Tuesday’s win over the Rangers the PK came up with an especially big kill on late second period penalty called on Cal Clutterbuck. The Isles’ penalty kill has given up seven goals in their last 13 time shorthanded, in a five game span. Prior to that the PK had been operating at a very efficient rate, killing off 27 of the 29 penalties they took.

Grade: C

colin mcdonald

Isles recall Colin McDonald, Cizikas misses practice

UPDATE, 11:10 AM: Casey Cizikas did not practice on Friday.

Ryan Strome centered the fourth line, while McDonald played wing on the third line with Brock Nelson and Michael Grabner.

The Islanders have emergency recalled Colin McDonald from Bridgeport, the team announced on Friday.

McDonald has played in two games this season for New York. He was sent down to the team’s AHL affiliate in October.

McDonald has 15 goals and 20 assists in 117 games as an Islander. In 38 games with Sound Tigers this season, McDonald scored 14 goals, 20 assists, and 34 points and was a -7.

Brian Erni

The fourth line took some lumps on Thursday, hence the Islanders to getting McDonald up for Saturday’s game in Detroit. Casey Cizikas was hobbled after blocking a shot and Cal Clutterbuck was also banged up, forcing both players to miss the third period. It’s likely that one or both will need some time to get healthy.

The Isles can certainly do worse than McDonald, who was just a victim of the roster crunch early in the season. I like his hustle, and his scoring touch is a nice added bonus, so New York shouldn’t miss a beat with the former Sound Tigers captain rounding out the fourth line.

Isles comeback falls short in loss to Bruins

Christian Arnold, Islanders Point Blank:

UNIONDALE, N.Y. — The Islanders found a way to come back from a two-goal deficit on Thursday night, but Bruins goals in the final seconds of the second period and opening minutes of the third led them to a 5-2 victory over the Isles.NHL: Boston Bruins at New York Islanders

The Bruins had a 2-o lead before the Islanders rallied in the second period. John Tavares scored 8:25 into the second to cut the Boston lead to 2-1 and Michael Grabner deflected Johnny Boychuk’s shot in to even the score at 2. However, an error in judgement by Jaroslav Halak led to a goal by Kevan Miller with 3.4 seconds left in the period.

Boston added two more goals in the third.

“It wasn’t our best effort that’s for sure,” Travis Hamonic said after the loss. “It just didn’t seem like we could get any second or third efforts and extended zone time. Things are going to happen and every game isn’t going to go as planned. You’re not going to win every game, so we have to be better in Detroit.” To read more of this story, click here