The New York Islanders are aware they probably can’t count on overcoming multi-goal deficits for wins every night.
It just seems like that this week.
The Islanders look to continue their early season surge Thursday night when they host the Arizona Coyotes in Elmont, N.Y.
Both teams were off Wednesday after earning road wins Tuesday night.
The Islanders came back from another two-goal, third-period deficit to edge the rival New York Rangers 4-3, while the visiting Coyotes never trailed in a 4-1 victory over the Buffalo Sabres.
New York’s seventh victory in eight games was particularly notable for the Islanders, who overcame a two-goal, third-period deficit in a second straight win for the first time in franchise history. New York scored twice in the third Monday night before Noah Dobson scored in overtime to cap a 4-3 win over the Calgary Flames.
In addition, the victories marked just the fourth time in NHL history a team has overcome multi-goal, third-period deficits to win on consecutive nights. The Carolina Hurricanes did so twice — Oct. 28-29, 2005, and Dec. 15-16, 2010 — while the Detroit Red Wings pulled it off on Nov. 9-10, 2018.
New York also overcame a two-goal, third-period deficit — in a game the Isles trailed 3-0 in the opening period — in a 5-4 win over the defending Stanley Cup champion Colorado Avalanche on Oct. 29.
The Islanders had just two third-period comeback wins, both from a goal apiece, last season. They followed up a pair of trips to the NHL semifinals by finishing in ninth place in the Eastern Conference, 16 points out of the final playoff spot.
“This is a veteran group — this group’s been through a lot, so a two-goal deficit going into the third, nothing to lose but an opportunity to have a great 20 minutes,” said Islanders captain Anders Lee, who scored the game-winning goal with 5:30 left Tuesday.
Then, with a grin, Lee added, “We’ll take that sometimes. Not all the time.”
The Coyotes began a franchise-record 14-game road trip with their own dramatic comeback Saturday, when they scored three unanswered goals in the third period to edge the Washington Capitals 3-2.
The Coyotes are on the lengthy trek because of construction at Arizona State’s Mullett Arena, the 4,600-seat facility the team is playing at after the city of Glendale, Ariz., didn’t renew the franchise’s lease at Desert Diamond Arena.
The win Tuesday was much less dramatic for the Coyotes, who improved to 5-6-1 after their third victory this season in which they never trailed. Last season, Arizona needed 22 games to record five wins (5-15-2) on its way to finishing with 57 points, the second-fewest in the NHL.
“Taking the lead early was really good for us because we didn’t have to chase the game,” Coyotes head coach Andre Tourigny said. “It’s a good feeling sometimes to protect a lead.”
–Field Level Media