UNIONDALE - The Islanders dominated for stretches of tonight's game, but never seemed to really assert themselves until late in the second. They seemed to more out-last the Colorado Avalanche than simply beat them, as both teams were in a different city the night before. In a game like this, you expect an unlikely hero, and that means Milan Jurcina getting two goals and the Islanders winning their second straight at home, beating the Avs' 5-2 at the Coliseum.
John Tavares scored an empty net goal for his first of the year after coming back from a concussion, and Michael Grabner tallied for the Isles in the third, while TJ Galiardi beat Dwayne Roloson for the Avs' only tally of the period. The Avs' out-shot the Isles 30-25. Roloson looked solid, coming in after Rick DiPietro played last night. He told me it didn't make much difference playing the second game in two after the rest of his team played last night, saying "Our guys are in good enough shape to be used to it and be ready for it." Roloson made 28 saves.
The Islanders were 1-for-7 on the power play, while the Avalanche were 0-for-4. Cody McLeod and Kyle Quincey both took four minutes in penalties each. Zenon Konopka and Chris Stewart dropped the gloves to an even, all-out brawl at only five seconds in.
UNIONDALE, NEW YORK - Halfway through the second period, both teams were starting to look a bit weathered, but Milan Jurcina put in two and Josh Bailey added another to make it 3-0 Islanders over the Colorado Avalanche at the end of the period.
Jurcina's first goal, at 13:06, came right off the faceoff win by Bailey shorthanded at 13:06. It was his first career shorthanded goal. He scored on a shot from a weak angle that went off the post, off Avalanche goaltender Craig Anderson and in at 18:01. Shortly afterwards, the Avs took a penalty and the Isles cashed in :59 after the second Jurcina goal. P.A. Parenteau threw a beautiful cross-crease feed to Josh Bailey to make it 3-0. Bailey now has seven points on the season (3G, 4A) to lead the club.
The teams are even in shots, 17-17. Islanders goaltender Dwayne Roloson, starting his second game of the year, has stopped all 17 shots he's faced through 40 minutes, while Craig Anderson has made 14 saves for Colorado. The Islanders will start the third period on the power play yet again, for 1:44. The Isles are 1-for-4 on the power play, while the Avs are 0-for-1.
UNIONDALE, NEW YORK - After one period, the Islanders and Colorado Avalanche are scoreless at Nassau, Coliseum. Colorado outshot New York 9-7, but each team had about an equal control of play, with both teams getting a couple stretches of a shift or two controlling the other.
John Tavares looked good in his return, setting up a couple of decent chances, and getting perhaps the best of the first period when he re-directed a Doug Weight pass on goal. Craig Anderson probably had the better quality of saves to make than Islanders goaltender Dwayne Roloson. Nonetheless, both keepers were perfect through 20.
The Isles went 0-for-2 on the power play in the first.
UNIONDALE, NEW YORK - After a tough loss in overtime last night, the Islanders look to rebound back at the Coliseum against the Colorado Avalanche, who held on to beat New Jersey last night despite being outshot 44-22.
The Isles look for their second win of the season, and second straight at home after beating the Rangers in Uniondale on Monday afternoon. The Avs look to win their third straight on the road, with a shootout victory in Detroit on Tuesday before the aforementioned win in Newark last night.
The Islanders will welcome back John Tavares, who has been recovering from a concussion the past week, and Dwayne Roloson will start in net, with the game being the second in two nights. Roloson's making his second start of the season, the first being Wednesday's loss in Washington. Trent Hunter will miss tonight's game with a foot injury.
Join SB Nation New York tonight for live coverage of the game. We'll be updating in-between periods at worst, and hopefully after each goal is score at best. Stay tuned after the game for locker room quotes.