Blueshirts break through late, down Isles in overtime
by Christian Arnold/Correspondent
UNIONDALE, N.Y. – The Islanders played with fire in the third period and got burned, as they fell 2-1 in overtime to the New York Rangers at Nassau Coliseum.
Grinder Matt Martin described the loss as “frustrating,” especially since the Islanders played a solid 40 minutes to start the game. Defensively, they kept the Rangers – and one of their most potent weapons in Rick Nash – at bay and were able to cling to a 1-0 lead.
But the visiting Rangers took it to the home team and put the Isles back on their heels in the third. With just over five minutes left in regulation, Nash broke through and tied things up.
The Islanders held on to come away with one point and get the game to overtime.
Unfortunately for the home team, Michael Grabner took a hooking penalty 21 seconds into the extra period. Marian Gaborik scored the game winner 21 seconds later to extend the Rangers winning streak to four games
“We just didn’t quit,” Gaborik said after the game. “We kept going and going and we got the goal. Kind of a fluky goal, but we had a lot of chances. That line with [Stepan], [Hagelin] and Nash, especially, were carrying us all game. They got the tying goal and it was a huge win for us.”
The game-winning goal scorer said he was just trying to get in the lane so that he could get a clear shot. “[Callahan] was in front there and did a good job screening.”
The Islanders only goal came 11:51 into the first period. Grabner was on the finishing end of a pass from behind the net from Colin McDonald
After the game, the Islanders weren’t just mad about losing, but also over the lack of calls made against the Rangers. Through 60 minutes of play they did not receive a single minute of power play time. This was the second time in a week that a full 60 minutes was played and the Islanders did not receive any power play time.
“Yeah it’s definitely frustrating,” Martin said about the lack of calls. “They’re by no means a soft team. So I don’t know if you can go through 60 minutes without a penalty, but maybe we’re wrong. Maybe they played a really clean game. There’s nothing we can do about it now.”
John Tavares seemed rather perturbed by the lack of calls after the game and said that it wasn’t the Rangers play that decided the game. And when asked what was, Tavares responded, “The call that was made and the ones that weren’t called in the third.”
Michael Del Zotto wasn’t as sympathetic over the non-calls and the displeasure the Islanders had over the hooking call that cost them the win.
“I have seen the replay, but just from the play itself I felt like it was a pretty easy call.” He said.
Del Zotto added: “A penalty is a penalty. Regardless of what time of the game it is, especially with a grade ‘A’ scoring chance. It takes away from an opportunity. It has to be called.”
The Rangers have a quick turnaround, hosting the Ottawa Senators Friday night at the Garden, while the Islanders don’t play again until Saturday at 1 o’clock when they take on the Washington Capitals on Long Island.