If the New York Islanders were looking for a signature win Thursday evening on Long Island, they didn’t get it.
Alex Ovechkin assisted on goals by Jason Chimera and Nicklas Backstrom, and rookie Braden Holtby turned away 24 shots as the Washington Capitals skated to a 2-1 win over their hosts at Nassau Coliseum.
Trailing 2-0, Michael Grabner got the Islanders (14-24-7) on the board in the second period, but it was not enough to prevent another loss for a team skating with 35 points to date. Goalie Rick DiPietro stopped 22 shots for the Isles, who were coming off of a Monday loss to the last place New Jersey Devils.
On the bright side for New York, both Kyle Okposo (New York’s second-leading scorer in 2009-10) and Frans Nielsen both returned from injuries, a shoulder and groin, respectively.
“I was a little rusty the first couple of shifts,” Nielsen told the Associated Press afterwards. “Once I got into it, it was OK but it definitely wasn’t my best game this year.
The Islanders will look to play their best games of the year this weekend in back-to-back contests (tonight on the road) and Sunday versus the Buffalo Sabres.
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Written by Dave Thomas