Calgary 5, New York 2

New York Islander Fan Central | 1/08/2009 11:34:00 PM |

Congratulations to Trevor Smith on his first NHL goal.

AP: Has the recap of New York's 5-2 loss to Calgary on Thursday.

NYI Fan Central Comments:
This game was there for the Islanders.

They hung in, killed the double-minor to Okposo, another penalty and then tied the game on a great shot by Tambellini off a Gervais play who did a nice job on offense tonight and was better with Streit. Right off the faceoff Calgary seemed to have an immediate odd-man rush MacDonald stopped where the defense disappeared.

And therein lies the story of this game and many others, what happened to the coverage?

Calgary did not turn into the 1981 Islanders at this point and bury them, the current Islanders simply faded away.

Soon after Calgary scored the 3-2 goal on another breakdown where a bounce, a breakdown or a deflection finds it's way onto someone's stick for a high quality chance that leads to a goal.

It's the theme of almost every loss.

Martinek stumbled on a goal against, Pock threw a nice hit but was not in position later for a goal. Witt is struggling an awful lot out there with the speed of the other clubs and is getting no bounces as we saw on the second goal.

Calgary for their part did not play great but created better chances MacDonald stopped (who was fantastic) than the ones they actually scored on.

Physically the game was a mismatch and anyone who tells you a defense with it's top five only missing two man games to injury vs what's happening here is not telling you the entire story.

On the other end of the ice the young players just keep getting better and it's not the goals but the little things. Okposo diving to keep a puck in on a powerplay and taking a few full windup shots and his work down low. Trevor Smith driving the net and not just shooting the puck into the goalie but showing the hands/composure to pull the puck back and give himself the open net, just before that Jackman and that line had another good shift and Jackman almost finished.

Bergenheim early got into a good spot to shoot.

Islanders just missed a few goals tonight and seemed to go for it on offense and got in close on Kiprusoff, when they did a price had to be paid. To their credit they skated well and forced Calgary to take a lot of penalties, the powerplay did not have a good night.

Islanders also got no breaks. The goal Glencross scored a puck shot from the point is redircted/blocked and out of nowhere it's on his stick in perfect shooting position in the middle of the ice. The second goal Witt blocks the pass it goes right to Rene Bourque who shoots it through him and past MacDonald.

Without MacDonald it could have easily been eight or nine but he failed to handle a soft shot early and it forced the Islanders to take a penalty that led to the 1-0 goal where Mike Cammalleri not only scored but in his motion put down Martinek and no Islander stood up for him.

That I did not like all with no response from his teammates.

Disappointing but there were a few good signs from the young players. Scott Gordon in the post-game talking about Hilbert and Nate Thompson coming back soon cannot mean any of these young players sit?

All due respect to Hilbert but Trevor Smith has shown better hands in five games than he has in almost two years.

Only thing that's going to get worse is the frustration from the players losing to this degree.

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