Many Isles fans thought that Mathew Barzal would be a nice addition to the lineup this year, but nobody thought he’d be a difference maker just 20 games into the season. So far, Mathew Barzal has 4 goals and 15 assists for a total of 19 points. He has certainly been in the early discussions for Rookie of the Year, but more importantly, how has he made the Isles a better team?
We all joined in on the Duchene rumors this offseason, as we knew the Isles desperately needed scoring from lines without John Tavares on them. We thought Duchene would be the perfect fit, but little did we know, Mathew Barzal is arguably better than him, and is certainly cheaper.
Mathew Barzal has provided an excellent offensive spark for the Islanders, as the Isles are currently scoring 3.6 goals per game, which is 8th best in the NHL. The issues for the Isles don’t have anything to do with the offense, and that is because of the depth the Islanders have. With a first line of Tavares, Lee, and Bailey performing extremely well, along with players like Eberle, Barzal, Leddy, Ladd and Nelson adding secondary scoring, the Isles have one of the best offensive units in the league.
If the Islanders can tighten up their defense, and get stronger performances from their goaltenders, they will be a serious threat to the League’s best, and could make a deep postseason run.