Kevin Schultz, Islanders Point Blank:Tuesday night, the Islanders broke a four-game losing streak with a 3-1 win against Nashville to move to 3-4 in the month of November. Nashville had come into the game outscored 10-0 in their previous two games and are now in a three-game slump that sees that score differential pushed to 13-1. Not good times in Nashville.
So while the Islanders performance last night was great, no less should have been expected against a struggling Predators team playing bad hockey and their third string goalie on the road.
The Islanders had a chance to earn some “easy” points in November over the four-game road trip against a couple of teams that were not playing well. If they want to improve upon their 3-4 November record, they’ll have to do it against some very tough opponents, much tougher than what they faced last night.
The month closes out against the Kings (11-6-1), Red Wings (9-5-5), Maple Leafs (11-6-0), Penguins (11-6-0), Flyers (6-10-1), Jets (9-9-2), Red Wings again and Capitals (10-8-1). Only two of the eight games feature teams under .500, and the majority of the teams are over .500, even when OT/SO losses are factored in.
The first test comes against the Kings on Thursday night at the Coliseum. The Kings are in the middle of their own four-game road trip, which started off on the wrong foot in Buffalo last night. They lost 3-2 in extra time against the Sabres, despite having more than double the shot attempts, 79-34. LA is also second in the league in shot attempt differential, behind only the Blackhawks.