Home SPORTS Islanders fall short in critical stretch vs. Bruins: ‘Brutal’

Islanders fall short in critical stretch vs. Bruins: ‘Brutal’

by NYPost
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BOSTON — The stretch of Tuesday’s game that should have secured the Islanders two points instead consigned them to only one. 

The Isles had all the momentum in their hands late in the second period against the Bruins when, after they had tied the game at two, A.J. Greer was called for roughing at 16:39. But the ensuing power play turned into a complete mess, with the Islanders unable to complete a zone entry and the Bruins getting the better of the chances despite being shorthanded. And before the two minutes were up, Derek Forbort buried one to put Boston ahead in a game it would eventually win, 4-3, in a shootout. 

“Brutal,” Mathew Barzal said of that power play. “Not great.” 

“It wasn’t a great power play, obviously,” Noah Dobson said. 

Although they went 0-for-3 on the man-advantage Tuesday, the Islanders don’t see a bigger issue with their power play and there’s good reason for that. They came into the night converting at a 22.99 percent rate, which puts them middle of the pack in the NHL, but have scored on the man-advantage in seven of their last 10. 

In their last two games, though, both losses, they’ve gone a combined 0-for-6. Tuesday, it cost them in a big way. 

Mathew Barzal and the Islanders couldn’t get anything going on a second-period power play.
Getty Images

“We had trouble with the entries, so that was the first thing, and then they ended up getting a rush,” coach Lane Lambert said of the stretch leading into Forbort’s goal. “It’s not an outnumbered rush, it’s an even-man rush. Missed an assignment that we shouldn’t miss and it’s in the back of our net.” 

The Bruins, who lead the league in penalty-kill percentage, shouldn’t go without credit, and the Islanders sounded happy to exit TD Garden with a point. But they could just as easily have left Boston as the first team this season to beat the Bruins in regulation in their building. 

“Our execution wasn’t great,” Dobson said. “I think when teams are pressuring you hard, your execution has to be a little better than that, but it happens. We’ll learn from it and get better on the power play for Friday.” 

New York Islanders goaltender Semyon Varlamov (40) looks back on a goal by Boston Bruins defenseman Derek Forbort (
Derek Forbort’s shorthanded goal was the culmination of a poor Islanders’ power play.
AP Photo

Kyle Palmieri and Anthony Beauvillier both continued to be out with upper-body injuries, though both participated in morning skate, and will be traveling with the team out west this week. 

Oliver Wahlstrom took just four shifts in the first period after being hit in the face with a puck, but returned to the game to play a total of 9:28. 

Lambert said the Islanders still don’t know whether Adam Pelech (upper-body) will travel with the team. 

Semyon Varlamov got the start over Ilya Sorokin, stopping 30 of 33 shots.

This story originally appeared on NYPost

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