One thing that must be done about the Islanders’ diminished play in the last two periods of Monday’s 2-1 victory over Minnesota, coach Jack Capuano said, was “address the penalties.”
Capuano said he was “very happy with the way we came out after Game One,” a 2-0 loss to Florida, “and our play proved that. Everybody that watched us play could see that. But you cannot get yourself into penalty trouble. Five-on-four, then five-on-threes, there’s no flow to the game. Your top-minute guys, your offensive guys are on the bench for five or six minutes at a time, which cuts their minutes down from 19 or 20 to 14 or 15.
“We’ve got to learn to stay out of the box, because you’re not going to win many games taking that many penalties. We were fortunate [against Minnesota]. Our penalty kill did a great job and our goaltender was excellent.”
Goalie Al Montoya, who made 20 saves, praised his penalty-kill unit.
“The first couple of power plays,” he said, “I think [Florida] didn’t even have a shot. So that’s hats off to these guys giving up their bodies. They did a great job. You’re not going to win every night, giving up that many penalties. But at the same time, when you do, you’ve just got to focus and kill ‘em off, and that’s what we did.”