The second round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs has been just as interesting as the first. There has only been one sweep in the second round as the Carolina Hurricanes swept the New York Islanders. The Hurricanes are one of the three teams to earn a sweep as they join the Columbus Blue Jackets and the New York Islanders
New York Islanders are Now Guilty of a Second Round Sweep
New York Islanders
In the first round, the Islanders played great hockey as they swept the Pittsburgh Penguins. The tables are turned and they are now victims of a sweep in the second round. The Islanders had a great year as they finished second in their division behind the Washington Capitals. Coach Barry Trotz turned this team around. They lost their best player in John Tavares to a trade but yet somehow this team got better. The defense was outstanding all year along with the goaltending and that propelled them to the second round. They just ran out of gas and ran into a hot Carolina team who is looking to continue their crazy season.
Reasons They Got Swept
1. No offense
The Islanders failed to score more than two goals in any of the four games against the Hurricanes. They scored only four goals in five games and they got shutout in game one. They scored only two goals at even strength. The two players who lead the way for the Islanders in round one was Jordan Eberle and Matt Barzal but both were almost shutdown in round two. Barzal scored only two goals and Eberle recorded only three assists and this all came on the power play. This was more than half of the offense in round two and that will get you nowhere in the playoffs. Having great defense and goaltending is great but if you can’t score then it is going to be a short series and that’s was it was for the Islanders.
2. Momentum stopped
Momentum is a big part of this sport and the Islanders couldn’t get any going. At any point where it seemed that the Islanders had momentum, the Hurricanes took it away from them whether it was a goal or just puck possession. The crowd couldn’t really get into the game and when they did they just got silent again. The Hurricanes did a great job staggering the Islanders and the crowd from ever getting into the game. The Islanders were able to do the same thing to the Penguins in the first round but it got reversed in round two.
3. Finishing Slow
Late in games, it seemed like the Islanders ran out of gas while the Hurricanes had the legs to finish the job. The Hurricanes finished every game stronger throughout the playoffs and that is what lead them to success. Going back to the offense, the Islanders scored next to nothing late. The Hurricanes outscored the Islanders 7-1 in the third period or overtime in the series. In a couple of games, the games became close late. It would be tied or the Islanders would be down by one but the Islanders couldn’t close out the deal. The Islanders would explode for several goals late or have the better play to finish off the job.
The Islanders will regroup for next season and try to find out how to get even better. They ran into a very hot team. The Hurricanes got fuel by the criticism of their regular season celebrations by T.V analyst Don Cherry and now it has become a national headline. Them “Bunch of Jerks” are onto the Eastern Conference Finals to face the Boston Bruins and will look to continue their hot play.
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