Goaltender Evgeni Nabokov lead the NY Islanders to a 41-save, 2-0 shutout victory over the visiting Columbus Blue Jackets during Sunday’s matinee game at Nassau Veteran’s Memorial Coliseum.
Following their 6-0 loss to the Minnesota Wild Tuesday night, the NY Islanders made good use of the four days off that they had to prepare for their game against Columbus on Sunday.
Nabokov, who made 41-saves on the night, was the Islanders best player both on the ice and on the penalty kill, where he shut the Blue Jackets out, despite having six-power play opportunities.
Cal Clutterbuck lit the lamp behind Columbus Goaltender Sergei Bobrovsky at 13.26 of the first-period, notching his 10th goal of the season, and the eventual game-winning goal on Sunday. The play started out as a chip in by Defenseman Kevin Czuczman, Johan Sundstrom scooped up the puck behind the net and pass it through the goal-crease to Frans Nielsen at the right face-off circle. The puck hopped over Nielsen’s stick, and bounced to the slot where Cal Clutterbuck buried it high over the glove of Bobrovsky.
Later on during an Islanders power-play in the second period, Defenseman Travis Hamonic showed off his offensive prowess when he went end-to-end, skating past all four Columbus defenders on a 200-ft rush, before beating Bobrovsky between his pad and blocker.
The Columbus Blue Jackets move to 36-29-6 for 78 pts, and the NY Islanders move to 27-35-9 for 63 pts.
The Blue Jackets will head home to will play the Detroit Red Wings at the Nationwide Arena on Tuesday at 7:30 pm. The NY Islanders will head to Raleigh, North Carolina to play their Metro Division rival Carolina Hurricanes at PNC Arena on Tuesday at 7 pm.
Three Stars of the Game
1) Evgeni Nabokov
2) Travis Hamonic
3) Cal Clutterbuck
Notes: NY Islanders were without Lubomir Visnovsky (upper body), John Tavares (knee), Michael Grabner (concussion), Brian Strait (hand).