Tuesday night, the New York Islanders continued their progress toward a playoff berth by defeating the Winnipeg Jets 5-2 at Nassau Veteran’s Memorial Coliseum.
Tuesdays game marked the debut of New York Islanders 2009 draft pick (6th round, 152nd overall) Anders Lee. Lee, Captained the Notre Dame Fighting Irish Hockey team to the final CCHA Mason Cup before having his season ended by St. Cloud State and then signing a 2 year entry level contract. During the first period of play, Lee served as a catalyst for the Islanders offense, on only his fourth shift on ice. Lee threw a wrist shot that just got past Winnipeg Jets Goaltender Ondrej Pavelec to score his first career NHL goal, on his first career NHL shot. Two Minutes later, Winnipeg Jets Defenseman Paul Postma answered with his own wrist shot that sailed past New York Islanders Goaltender Kevin Poulin to tie the game 1-1.
Though the Islanders out-shot the Jets 18-8 the game remained a close contest throughout the second period, as Winnipeg Jet Paul Postma scored his second goal of the night on a tip in for the lead, only to be answered by New York Islander Colin McDonald just minutes later. The game stay tied 2-2 till the final minute of the period when New York Islander Frans Neilsen scored the game winning goal on a power play.
With the lead already in hand in the third period, the Islanders locked down the Winnipeg offense for the majority of the period, before sending out their 1st line, Matt Moulson, John Tavares and Brad Boyes. With only the final 2 minutes remaining the line managed to score 2 more goals and put the icing on top of a solid performance. The first of the two goals was a two on one breakaway headed by John Tavares, who at the last second passed to Matt Moulson for a wrist shot past Ondrej Pavelec. The Final goal came with only 36 seconds left in the game, with Winnipeg’s net empty John Tavares went on a breakaway uncovered and sealed the game with the fifth and final goal. By the end of the night, the Islanders out-shot the Jets 39-25 and with the win tallied 39 points, 2 more than the New York Rangers, (who have two games in hand) to secure the eighth and final playoff spot for the night.
The 3 stars of the game were:
1: Frans Neilsen
2: Anders Lee
3: Paul Postma
Winning Goaltender: Kevin Poulin
Losing Goaltender: Ondrej Pavelec
Brandon Titus photographed the game for Inside Hockey.