After a much needed win in Washington, the New York Islanders traveled back home to the Nassau Coliseum to face the Calgary Flames Thursday night. The Islanders are scrambling for as many points as they can get, as the Olympic break is days away and the Islanders will only have 22 games remaining after the break to make a run for the playoffs.
After a scoreless first period both teams seemed to turn up the physicality. After a back and forth rally the Flames finally put the first score on the board at 14:15 in the second period. Four minutes later, the Flames found the back of the net again on a power play opportunity for the 2-0 lead. With seven seconds remaining in the period, Thomas Hickey finds Josh Bailey’s deflected attempt and rips it to the back of the net to send them into the third period down by one.
The Islanders showed some promise in the third period. At 7:31, Calvin de Haan finds the puck above the left circle after a John Tavares pass. De Haan would put the puck top shelf, lighting the lamp to even the game at 2-2.
The game winning goal would come off of a controversial play, however. Calgary would put a sharp-angled shot in the crease as David Jones was crashing the net. Although Jones deflected the puck in the net he ran over Evgeni Nabokov in the process. The controversy was whether or not Nabokov was interfered, but the call would stand as a Flames goal, 3-2.
To try and tie up the game, the Islanders would pull Nabokov to have the six-man advantage. After fumbling the puck around in the neutral zone, the Flames would take the puck and shoot on the empty net with three seconds remaining to finish the game at 4-2.
The Islanders play their last game before the Olympic break at home on Saturday against the Colorado Avalanche. Puck will drop at 7:00 p.m. EST.