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Postgame Mailbag: Islanders Hard on Pucks Against Hurricanes, Sorokin Shines

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New York Islanders forwards Cal Cliutterbuck and Casey Cizikas hugging netminder Ilya Sorokin after the win (Photo courtesy of New York Islanders Twitter)

The New York Islanders had their second strong showing in a row, as they beat the Carolina Hurricanes 6-2 by wearing them down on the forecheck, laying the body, and getting strong performances from each line and netminder Ilya Sorokin.

It’s about building on these wins for New York and Saturday night against the Colorado Avalanche is another chance to do just that.

So, which version of the isles is the real Isles? (@jonnywax)

If you are a New York Islanders fan, this season has been one of up-and-down performances already. But even in the losses last weekend to the Tampa Bay Lightning and the Florida Panthers, there were a lot of positives to build on. And against the New York Rangers and now the Carolina Hurricanes, the Islanders have played strong structurally, which allowed them to limit their opponent’s speed and win hockey games.

It seems that the players have grasped Lane Lambert’s game plan, and if that is the case, this team will be a hard team to play every night. It will just be about sticking to that game plan.

Love, love the game. Best this year. But that grinding style is so hard to play night after night. Can they do it? (@Sofunus)

The win over the Hurricanes was by far the strongest the Islanders have looked all season from start to finish. Each line contributed in one way or another. The fourth line was the Islanders strongest line early, which set the tone for the rest of the contest. But it was a grind the whole way, and especially in the first leg of a back-to-back, Saturday night’s contest will be a huge test to see how they and their style can hold up.

We have seen over the last few years how unsustainable a defensive system is but with Lambert’s addition of more offense and aggressiveness, the ability to generate offense and score should, in theory, allow for less stress on the defense and netminders. Despite the shot totals and shot attempts against on Friday, the New York Islanders did score five before their empty-net goal.

Wahlstrom and Barzal look like a great duo (@Johnmlb3)

In the first game for the duo, there were some positives, but they did not stand out as much as they did against the Hurricanes. Although Oliver Wahlstrom and Josh Bailey scored in the contest, it was the Mat Barzal show in Raleigh.

He is the difference-maker for that line, and when he is moving his feet and using his edges, he can do things no one else can do. And with his awareness and play-making ability, he was able to make two stellar passes to set up his teammates.

For Oliver Wahlstrom, his ability to keep up with Barzal on that 2-on-1 was a positive sign, as speed was a major concern for the duo. Could Wahlstrom, and Bailey, keep pace with Barzal, enough to be effective?

We are just two games in but so far, so good. And as mentioned, with Barzal’s edge work, Wahlstrom and Bailey just need to get open if they are delayed entering the offensive zone, as we saw, Barzal will find them.

NYI Hockey Now Stories:

“A lot of the things that he does aren’t noticed as much as maybe us coaches notice them, but a very valuable guy from that standpoint.” Josh Bailey has made a career of skating under the radar. Tonight he skates in the spotlight. New York Islanders.

After a dominant performance against the New York Rangers on Wednesday, the New York Islanders rocked the Carolina Hurricanes in Josh Bailey’s 1,000th NHL game, winning by a score of 6-2. The Islanders are now 4-4-0 on the young season and have picked up their first win on the road. New York Islanders.

Just the accomplishment of skating in game 1,000 would have made Friday a night to remember. But Josh Bailey said before the game that it would be sweeter if the New York Islanders could get a win on a memorable night. Well, in the second period, with the score knotted at two apiece, Bailey helped the cause as he scored his second of the season. New York Islanders.

If you don’t have a sandwich named after you at Blue Line Deli and Bagels, have you truly made it? A few days after having the UBS Arena press level named after himself, the legendary hockey historian Stan Fischler made his way to the famous New York Islanders deli in Huntington, NY, to introduce “The Stanwich.” New York Islanders.

Every year, over 200 players are selected by NHL franchises during the NHL Draft with the same goal–to make it to the NHL. The majority never get the opportunity, and for some that do make it, they fail to live up to expectations. The New York Islanders have dealt with a handful of those situations, as the latest is 23-year-old forward, Kieffer Bellows. New York Islanders.

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