The New York Islanders bested the Boston Bruins 5-2-1 in the regular-season series. Boston went 3-0-1 at TD Garden and 0-3-1 at Nassau Coliseum.
Jean-Gabriel Pageau led the Islanders with five goals and three assists for eight points. The Bruins, meanwhile, were paced by Brad Marchand (4-3=7) and David Pastrnak (2-5=7).
Each team made trade deadline roster moves that have bolstered their clubs. The Islanders acquired Kyle Palmieri and Travis Zajac from the New Jersey Devils. The Bruins added Taylor Hall and Curtis Lazar from the Buffalo Sabres while also picking up defenseman Mike Reilly from the Ottawa Senators.
Hall racked 14 points in 16 regular-season games with Boston. He has continued his scoring ways in the postseason by notching two goals and assisting in five games against the Washington Capitals.
Palmieri nabbed two goals and two assists in 17 games with the Islanders, but in the postseason, he has scored three goals., one of which was a game-winning goal in overtime against the Pittsburgh Penguins in game one of their first-round series.
Palmieri scored five goals against the Bruins in the regular season as a member of the Devils. His play will be something to keep an eye on during this series.
The Islandersbalanced attack is led by Matthew Barzal, Brock Nelson, Jordan Eberle, and Anthony Beauvillier. The defense is held in place by veteran Nick Leddy. During the playoffs, Adam Pelech and Ryan Pulock have become the team’s go-to pairing.
The Islanders’ situation in goal is one of envy for many other teams. Semyon Varlamov lead the team all season, while rookie Ilya Sorokin has won all four of his starts in the postseason in carrying the Islanders to a 4-2 series win Penguins. Sorokin has a 1.95 GAA and a .943 Save Percentage in those games.
Boston has their top two lines humming coming out of their 4-1 series win over the Capitals. But it was an entire roster effort for the club in getting to the second round.
Charlie McAvoy was the big story in the Capitals series. His five assists paced the offensive attack from the back end, but his physical play set the tone against the bigger Capitals.
Tuukka Rask was pretty flawless throughout the five games. He comes into the second round with a 1.81 GAA and a .941 SV%.
This series probably won’t veer off from the way that the regular season went. The Bruins have the home-ice advantage in this series. It mattered in the regular season; it should continue to matter in the spring.
Boston has more depth and experience. That should be enough for the Bruins to power past the Islanders in this series.