Capuano says Isles ‘didn’t deserve’ Game 2, hints at lineup changes

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As the 1-1 series shifts to Long Island, both the Washington Capitals and New York Islanders fumed about a different game so far.

That might seem like a no-brainer with a loss apiece, but sometimes teams are happy with efforts and unhappy with results. The Islanders didn’t seem happy about the way they dropped a 4-3 loss tonight, and it sounds like head coach Jack Capuano is mulling over changes, as the New York Daily News’ Stephen C. Lorenzo reports.

“These are the tough decisions you have to make as a staff and now it comes down to personnel,” Capuano said. “We have to make sure we put the lineup in that’s going to help us win Game 3.”

The harshest comment from Capuano was “we didn’t deserve it.”

Here’s a list of the scratches from Game 2, excluding injured blueliner Travis Hamonic (who would be an obvious add-in):

Eric Boulton
Matt Donovan
Tyler Kennedy
Colin McDonald
Griffin Reinhart

That’s not an awful collection of players to insert into the lower level of the lineup. Playing armchair coach for a moment, one obvious scratch possibility would be Michael Grabner, who didn’t manage a single shot on goal and whose numbers look especially hideous when you consider “fancy stats.”

A swap or two might not change everything, yet with a switch to home ice in a rowdy old barn – and with a team that’s one game removed from leaving the Capitals worried about slow feet – the tenor of the situation could change quickly.

Going further, John Tavares didn’t seem too upset:

However they feel about the overall level of play, the Islanders had 2-0 and 3-1 leads, but go back home with the series tied.

Now Capuano’s key is to put his team in the best position possible to have the Capitals picking up the pieces next.