After getting blown out by the Toronto Maple Leafs on Tuesday night and missing a huge opportunity in the Eastern Conference playoff race, the New York Islanders entered Thursday’s game against the Rangers with a playoff mentality.
They ended up bouncing back nicely from that ugly loss the other night to pick up a huge 4-2 win over the Rangers.
The Islanders received a pair of goals from Andrew Ladd in the win to move to within a single point of the Maple Leafs for the second wild card spot in the Eastern Conference Wild Card race and still have a game in hand.
For the Islanders to even be at this point is a pretty stunning turnaround given where this team was just a few weeks ago with a 15-16-8 record on Jan. 11.
A week later they fired coach Jack Capuano.
Since the 11th the Islanders have gone on an 11-4-2 run and made up some significant ground in the playoff race.
Still, the road ahead is going to be quite a challenge for the Islanders, and we should emphasis “road.”
Of the 26 games remaining on their schedule the Islanders will play 18 of them on the road, including a nine-game road trip that starts on Feb. 21.
The Islanders are only 7-12-4 away from the Barclays Center this season.
The loss for the Rangers snapped what had been a six-game winning streak.