Kyle Okposo got the New York Islanders on the board, and his night took off from there.
In total, he scored four times, including three consecutive goals in the third period, to propel the Islanders to a huge 6-3 win over the visiting Pittsburgh Penguins on Friday. Appropriate, because Okposo’s goal production against the Penguins in this game matches New York’s current winning streak, as the Islanders have moved to the top of the Eastern Conference.
Further proof they should no longer be considered just a playoff team, but a Stanley Cup contender as the NHL’s regular season has moved past the midway point?
Okposo’s first goal of the evening was set up on a beautiful move from John Tavares. His fourth goal, which came on a late third-period power play, put the Islanders up two goals. Essentially, it was game over at that point.
The Islanders were able to take advantage of a bad penalty from Penguins’ forward Steve Downie, who was called for slashing with under three minutes remaining in what was a one-goal game.
Pittsburgh’s head coach Mike Johnston wasn’t pleased.
“It was not a smart penalty. We can’t take penalties like that at that time of the game,” said Johnston, as per the club’s Twitter account.