ELMONT, NY– The New York Islanders took it to the Pittsburgh Penguins early on and ran away with the game after the first period as they won 5-1 at UBS Arena.
The Islanders have won two in a row, in dominating fashion, and are 20-14-2. They sit a point shy of the second wild-card spot.
Josh Bailey-Mat Barzal-Oliver Wahlstrom
Anders Lee-Brock Nelson-Anthony Beauvillier
Zach Parise-Jean-Gabriel Pageau-Casey Cizikas
Matt Martin-Aatu Räty-Hudson Fasching
Robin Salo-Ryan Pulock
Alexander Romanov-Scott Mayfield
Sebastian Aho-Noah Dobson
Anders Lee gave the New York Islanders a 1-0 lead just over a minute into the contest as he sniped Penguins netminder Tristan Jarry blocker side following an odd-man rush feed by Brock Nelson for his 12th of the season.
Brock McGinn tied the contest at one at 15:13 of the first period as he deflected a P.O. Joseph point shot for his second of the season.
Mathew Barzal scored his sixth of the season just 50 seconds into the second period as he deflected a Hudson Fasching shot to give the Islanders a 2-1 lead.
Josh Bailey scored his sixth of the season at 11:32 of the second period as he scored on a wide-open cage following a strong setup by Noah Dobson. Dobson and Romanov were credited with the assists.
Barzal scored his second of the contest as he hopped on a loose puck and banked it off Jarry’s shoulder and in for his seventh of the season.
Lee scored his second of the contest to give the Islanders a 5-1 lead at 3:33 of the third period. Brock Nelson and Ryan Pulock were credited with the assists.
Strong Starts to Periods the Difference Maker
The New York Islanders got off to strong starts in both the first and second periods against the Penguins, which set the stage for a dominating performance.
Just 1:05 into the first period, the Islanders capitalized on a Kris Letang turnover, with Anders Lee potting the contest’s first goal.
Despite the Islanders allowing the tying goal before the end of first, a Mat Barzal goal just 50 seconds into the second catapulted them to victory.
The Islanders then scored another early in the third, at the 3:33 mark, as Lee scored his second of the contest.
Dobson Fakes out UBS Arena For Special Assist
New York Islanders defenseman Noah Dobson has shown off the offense this season, but his assist on Josh Bailey’s 3-1 tally was something else as he faked out the entirety of UBS Arena.
After receiving the puck inside the Penguins’ blue line, he seemed to be winding up for a slapshot on goal. Instead, he hesitated and made a no-look pass to teammate Josh Bailey.
The pass from Dobson & the goal from Bailey. pic.twitter.com/J7kfvb3kaY
— New York Islanders (@NYIslanders) December 28, 2022
With everyone fooled, Bailey had a wide-open cage and buried his fifth of the season.
Islanders Lose Oliver Wahlstrom
The New York Islanders cannot catch a break on the injury front.
With four players already on Injured Reserve in Adam Pelech, Cal Clutterbuck, Kyle Palmieri, and Semyon Varlamov, and one likley on their way in Simon Holmstrom, you can add forward Oliver Wahlstrom to the group of battered Islanders.
Before his first shift could come to a close, Wahlstrom left the game with an injury and did not return.
UP NEXT: The New York Islanders host the Columbus Blue Jackets Thursday night at UBS Arena with puck drop at 7:30 PM.