National Hockey League action on Thursday evening and a pair of Metro Division foes will square off as the New York Islanders battle it out with the Pittsburgh Penguins at PPG PAINTS Arena in Pittsburgh, PA. The Islanders come into this game off a 6-2 loss to the Lightning on the road, while the Penguins enter this game off a 4-3 home loss to the Rangers. Goalie Probables: The Islanders will be sending out Thomas Greiss and the penguins will counter with Tristan Jarry.
Islanders Get Lit Up By The Lightning
The New York Islanders have really been playing well of late, but on Tuesday evening, they ran into a better team and it was not a good result for them at all as they fell to the Lightning on the road by a score of 6-2. The Isles are still 8-3 in their last 11 games and their offense has been very good of late as they have averaged 4.09 gpg over their last 11 games. The offense is what has led this team, but it didn’t really show up in their loss to the Lightning as they scored just the two goals in the game. Scoring those goals were Mathew Barzal, which was his 7t of the year and Jordan Eberle, which was his 11th of the year. The Islanders have gone 8-8 on the road so far. Taking the loss against the lightning was Thomas Greiss and he has now gone 8-5 with 3.79 GAA and a .890 save percentage on the year overall, including 4-3 with a 4.11 GAA and a .88 save percentage on the road. In his career, he has gone 44-54 with a 2.76 GAA on the road and 44-41 with a 2.71 GAA against the Eastern Conference, while against the Penguins he has gone 3-1 with a 2.75 GAA. Should it be Jaroslav Halak, then we note that he is 8-6 with a 2.92 GAA and a .905 save percentage on the year, including 4-5 with a 3.03 GAA and a .901 save percentage on the road. In his career, he has gone 92-89 with a 2.69 GAA on the road and 123-84 with a 2.46 GAA against the East, while against the Pens he has gone 8-6 with a 2.28 GAA.
The Islanders enter this contest ranked 1st in the league in scoring at 3.73 gpg, while also ranking 17th in shots taken (31.3 spg) and 7th in power play conversions, converting on 21.7% of their chances. At the defensive end of the ice, they have been very poor as they enter this contest ranked 29th in goals allowed, giving up 3.27 gpg, while also ranking 26th in shots allowed (32.9 spg) and 30th in penalty kill, allowing teams to convert on 25.0% of their chances.
Pens Take A Tough Home Loss To the Rangers
The Pittsburgh Penguins had been riding a nice little four-game winning streak, but two of those wins were against the Sabres and another was against the Flyers. Well, they took a step up in competition on Tuesday night and they feel at home to the Rangers by a score of 4-3. The Pens have really been inconsistent at times this year and are now 15-14 on the year overall and in 5th place in the Metro Division. This is still a solid team that will have things figured out by the time the playoffs arrive. The pens had a 2-1 and a 3-2 lead in the game against the Rangers but just couldn’t close the deal. Scoring in the loss was Conor Sheary, which was his 9th of the year, Phil Kessel, which was his 13th and Patric Hornqvist, which was his 11th. The Penguins are now 9-4 here at home. Absorbing the loss against the Rangers was Tristan Jarry, who allowed four goals on 29 shot attempts to fall to 4-3 with a 2.30 GAA on the year overall, including 3-1 with a 2.65 GAA and a .916 save percentage here at home. He is still getting the starts for the Penguins as Matt Murray will be out until late December. This will be his first meeting with the Islanders.
The Penguins have been above average on offense so far as they come in ranked 14th in the league in scoring at 2.96 gpg, while also ranking 2nd in shots taken (35.3 spg) and 4th in power play conversions, converting on 25.7% of their chances. At the defensive end of the ice, they have been poor as they come in ranked 23rd in goals allowed, giving up 3.21 gpg, while also ranking 15th in shots allowed (31.6 spg) and 20th in penalty kill, allowing teams to convert on 21.2% of their chances.
New York is:
- The Over is 6-1 in their last seven games playing on one days rest
- The Over is 15-5-1 in their last 21 vs. the Eastern Conference
- The Over is 4-0-1 in their last five home games
- The Over is 4-1-1 in their last six vs. the Eastern Conference
The Penguins took two from the Buffalo Sabres and it looked like they were starting to gain some momentum, but they showed that they still have work to do as they then went out and lost at home to the Rangers. The Islanders struggled in their loss to the Lightning on the road, but have still been playing good hockey overall. The Penguins have issues in the crease right now, especially with Matt Murray out and the Islanders are certainly a team that can score on Tristan Jarry as they have averaged 4.00 gpg over their last 10 games. The Penguins have also been scoring well of late as they have averaged 3.60 gpg in their last 10 games and 3.46 gpg at home, while the Islanders have allowed 3.70 gpg in their last 10 games and 3.50 gpg on the road. If you haven’t figured it out yet, i am going with the Over here.