Monday, January 14, 2008

Game recap: Islanders 3, Senators 1

Tre-MEND-dous end to the road trip, beating the Senators on the road for the first time in more than five years.

And a successful trip it was. Six points in those five road games, and in the last 12 games, beginning with a road win in Pittsburgh on Dec. 21, the Islanders have managed at least a point in 10 of them, with seven victories. Take a look at the standings and the Islanders are only six points behind the first-place Devils and Penguins, with a game in hand on the Pens.

Look closer at the standings and while the Isles' 122 goals allowed isn't horrible, the 108 goals for is pathetic. Worst in the league. This looks like a playoff-caliber team when you consider the effort and the overall play under Ted Nolan, but it's going nowhere if it can't figure out how to score more often and more consistently.

Two goals by Marc-Andre Bergeron, and you think back a couple of weeks when he was a healthy scratch and you wondered what his future held. Now we're seeing how productive he can be, and when a team works as hard as it does for goals as this team does, getting production from the blue line is critical.

Another great game for DiPietro, making 31 saves against one of the top-scoring teams in the league.

Up next, les Canadiens in what should be a warm welcome home at the Coliseum.

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