New York Islanders defenseman Andy Greene, center, celebrates with teammates...

New York Islanders defenseman Andy Greene, center, celebrates with teammates after scoring against the Anaheim Ducks during the third period on Feb. 27, 2022.  Credit: AP/Alex Gallardo

DENVER — It hasn’t been the other teams that have been the Islanders’ biggest opponent this season. Rather, it’s been their maddening inability to sustain any consistency.

So while the NHL-best Avalanche are a formidable foe, the Islanders’ biggest test on Tuesday night at Ball Arena will be to see if they can end their five-game road trip with back-to-back wins.

That’s something they haven’t done in regulation since Nov. 4-6.

"We can’t get some traction going, right?" defenseman Andy Greene said. "We have a great game. We can’t seem to find that next one. There’s no better test than going into Colorado. They have a great team."

The Islanders are coming off one of their more solid efforts in Sunday night’s 4-0 win over the Ducks. But that followed one of their more lackluster performances in Saturday night’s 5-2 loss to the Kings.

The Islanders have not won successive games since Jan. 17-21, when they beat the Flyers on back-to-back nights, including a shootout win in Philadelphia, and then shut out the Coyotes.

The Islanders were good in the opening two games of this trip, a 5-2 win over the Kraken on Feb. 22 and a 4-3 shootout loss in San Jose on Thursday as they took a season-high 47 shots.

But the Kings were the only opponent among the first four to be in a playoff position, and the loss in Los Angeles continued the Islanders’ futility against the NHL’s elite.

The Islanders are 3-16-2 against teams holding playoff positions and have been outscored 73-38. The Central Division-leading Avalanche (39-10-4) are 22-3-2 at home and 12 points ahead of their nearest competitor in the Western Conference. They have won three straight and seven of their last nine.

"You look at their record, they’re a great team," Ross Johnston said. "They’re going to be an excellent test for us to see where we’re at and I think we’re up for the challenge We’ve played a lot of good teams over the past few seasons and the Avalanche will be another one of those."

But coach Barry Trotz discounted the notion of the Avalanche being a measuring stick for the Islanders. He said the true test will be whether the Islanders can carry over the way they played in beating the Ducks.

"We’ve been trying to get traction all year," Trotz said. "It’s not a test. We’ve been tested. There’s good teams all the time. If it wasn’t Colorado, it would be someone else. We’ve just got to play the type of style we played [Sunday]. I think the guys had fun doing it the right way. That to me is the key, is doing it the right way. We got rewarded with a hard-fought, committed effort."

The Islanders did not practice on Monday after the weekend back-to-back so there was no update on either Mathew Barzal (lower body) or Zdeno Chara (upper body). Both were injured against the Kings and did not play on Sunday.

Trotz listed both as day-to-day.

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