Throughout this hot stretch of Islanders hockey, fans throughout the NHL have turned their head to see Lou Lamoriello and the streaking Islanders. A team whom people predicted would be in the bottom half of the league standings wise has now won 10 games in a row.
With all of the attention that the Islanders have received, fans of other teams have compared the Islanders streak to the Buffalo Sabres streak from last season where they won 10 games in a row. There are rumblings that the Islanders will fall off the rails and not qualify for a playoff spot, just like the Sabres.
Comparing the Islanders streak to the Sabres is quite astonishing. During the Sabres streak, six out of their ten games went to overtime or a shootout, a number in which the Islanders winning streak had only three of those instances.
When it comes to the Islanders, they were able to excel and win handedly in various outings. Even after the streak ended, with the Islanders taking a loser point against the Penguins, the Islanders have been winning still. After the Sabres streak ended, they lost five straight.
During the Sabres streak, Jeff Skinner scored 10 goals and Sabres goalie Carter Hutton played in seven games, while the Sabres other goalie, Linus Ullmark, played in just three games. For the Islanders, the scoring has come from the entire team.
Yes, Mat Barzal is playing well and scoring a lot of points during this span, but there have been goals from a variety sources. The Islanders goalkeeping has also been split even between Thomas Griess and Semyon Varlamov.
The Islanders have been playing a depth game while the Sabres played the hot hand. After the Sabres streak ended, Jeff Skinner already had 17 goals on the year and it was only November.
However, after Skinner stopped scoring as frequently as he did during that run, the Sabres fell. Skinner scored 40 goals last season, but his 10 goals in 10 games carried the Sabres offensively.
Stop comparing the Islanders to the Sabres of last season.
The Islanders have been consistent with their play and have been reaping the benefits of that as of late. With the season still being in its young stages, there is no saying what will happen when it comes to the Islanders season. The analytics could catch up to them and the Islanders could fall of the rails, or the Islanders could continue their strong play and make a run.
One thing is for sure and that is that Barry Trotz and Lou Lamoriello know what they are doing. Just like they have done for two years, the Islanders will continue to prove people wrong. When people doubt them, they thrive, and that will continue.