A 4:28 stretch of the third period on Thursday night in Washington gave the Islanders a little glimpse of how they were not so long ago.
They scored three goals in that span, capitalizing on only a handful of scoring chances to turn a scoreless game into a 3-0 cushion that held up until the final horn. After a stretch of eight games in which they failed to score more than two goals, the Isles posted eight total in consecutive nights and seemed to get some confidence back with the puck.
“You could see even after we scored those goals, we were whipping it around pretty good,” Andrew Ladd said. “Hopefully we’ve turned a corner a bit and we can feel like shots are going to go in and build off that.”
After a day off Friday, the Islanders will go back to work Saturday in advance of a visit from the Red Wings on Sunday night, the first of a stretch of three straight and five of the next six at Barclays Center.
There are no slouches coming to town. The Rangers make their season debut at Barclays Center on Tuesday, the Blues are there on Thursday and the Capitals and Blackhawks visit next week. Each will be a stiff test for the Isles as they try to put their ugly first 20 games behind them.
The wins over the Penguins on Wednesday and the Capitals on Thursday were not without their issues. Obviously, the blown 3-0 lead in the third period against Pittsburgh was less than ideal. The six power plays they gave the Capitals made for hairy moments, with Jaroslav Halak bailing out his team.
“The effort has been there,” Jack Capuano said. “Obviously, it’s results that matter. It’s good to see the effort rewarded because we weren’t seeing that for a while.”
Notes & quotes: Scott Mayfield, who had two assists on Wednesday and was a healthy scratch on Thursday, was returned to Bridgeport. With Dennis Seidenberg back healthy and Adam Pelech (upper body) on injured reserve but still up with the Islanders, Mayfield was sent down to get back on the ice with the Sound Tigers.