Familiar slow start for Islanders
The Islanders (3-3-1) closed out the first month of the season with a 5-2 home win over the New Jersey Devils. It’s been a slow start for the defending Stanley Cup champions, but there’s a lot of hockey left to play. Three players lead the team in scoring, all with 7 points: C Brock Nelson, LW Anthony Beauvillier, and RW Oliver Wahlstrom. Mathew Barzal has recorded a team-high 5 goals, and the Islanders key free agency signing, RW Bryan Rust has 5 points, 3 assists and 2 goals. Goalie Semyon Varlamov (2-3-1) hopes to improve on his 3.16 GAA.
Season Opener vs Avalanche, not so good
ELMONT, NY — Center Nathan MacKinnon scored twice to carry the Colorado Avalanche to a 4-2 victory over the Islanders in the season opener for both clubs. MacKinnon struck midway through the first period, then later early in the second, breaking a 1-1 tie. Gabriel Landeskog’s first of the season 12 minutes later added on to the lead (3-1). New York would only cut it to 3-2 in the third frame before Valeri Nichushkin’s empty-netter sealed the win for Colorado.
The Islanders’ first goal of the 2022-23 campaign was put in by Casey Cizikas late in the first period. Anders Lee owned the second Islanders goal, scored in the third period. Bryan Rust and Mathew Barzal skated on the 1st-line for the first time and the results weren’t good, minus two for both players.