Sometimes your team just has to find a way to come back after falling behind, and sometimes your team just has to find a way to hang onto a lead. In the Thursday night game between the Nashville Predators and the New York Islanders, that is exactly what both teams were struggling to do.
The Predators would be the first team to try to hang onto a lead, as Austin Watson scored an unassisted goal just 134 seconds into the game. That goal would be the first to reach the net behind Thomas Greiss. Greiss would have his work cut out for him tonight as the Predators were circling their prey early and often in this game. But despite Anders Lee giving up a power play in the opening period, as he was called for hooking near the midway point, Greiss only allowed the lone goal during the period. That's especially impressive when you know that the Predators had 17 shots on goal to the fact that the Islanders only had a mere seven.
During the second period the Predators got their shots going early and often again. It took a little bit longer but Filip Forsberg was able to score his second goal of the season with a friendly assist from James Neal. But the Islanders would start their comeback in just a few minutes. As they would light up the lamp behind Pekka Rinne just 40 seconds after Forsberg scored his goal. Lee made up for his earlier penalty as he was able to score his first goal of the season as he received assists from both John Tavares and Ryan Strome. Kyle Okposo would get into the action later in the second period as he took a pass from Mikhail Grabovski to tie the game up at two goals a piece. That's the way the second period would end as the Predators again got another 17 shots on goal in this period, while the Islanders upped their game by putting 13 shots on goal themselves, and of course getting two past Rinne.
Nikolay Kulemin would be the man to break the 2-2 tie. Grabovski would get another assist on this goal and so would Brock Nelson. A few minutes later in the period Lee would return the favor that Tavares had given him in the second as he would get an assist on a John Tavares goal that would be his third of the season. Travis Hamonic also had an assist on that goal. There were still nine minutes left in the game for the Predators to come back, and they tried their best as Neal would score this time with Forsberg and Roman Josi getting the credit for the assists. That would be the final goal of the game though as the Islanders were able to hang on with some great goalie play by Greiss down the stretch to hang on by a final score of 4-3.
Greiss deserves some major credit in this game as he saved 44 shots on the night and despite giving up three goals, he achieved a 93.6% save percentage.
Next up for the New York Islanders (2-1-1, 5 points) is another home game as they will face the San Jose Sharks (3-0, 6 points) at the Barclays Center again on Saturday, October 17 at 7:30 PM Eastern. Meanwhile the Predators (3-1, 6 points) will travel further North as they face the Ottawa Senators (3-2, 6 points) at the Canadian Tire Centre on Saturday, October 17 at 7 PM Eastern.