The New York Islanders are starting to show some signs of life after rallying for a 4-3 win on Thursday night to break their five-game losing streak. This team can score goals all day but can’t stop the puck from going in the net. You can only do so much even scoring three goals a game when your goalies are giving up more than that on average each game.
I have talked about John Tavares before and he is up to 16 points on the season with eight goals and eight assists. He did help the Islanders rally, but this team is going to need to depend on much better goalie play to break the .500 mark and try to make the playoffs. Evgeni Nabokov is giving up almost three goals a game while Rick DiPietro, who is signed through what feels like 2050, has given up nine goals in two games. There is plenty of talent on the ice around the goalies but Nabokov needs to get back to the way he used to play with the San Jose Sharks and soon.
The team has traded for Tim Thomas, who is sitting out this season to spend more time with family, but that won’t help this year’s team. The offense should be able to keep up with they are doing but if Nabokov and DiPietro don’t start stopping pucks from filling the nets, all the goals in the world aren’t going to help this team. Tavares can only do so much and may score 70 points this season but it is now on the goalies to step up.