John Tavares glided from one end of the ice to the other, skating circles around Devils like they were merely props to his personal highlight reel as the Nassau Coliseum crowd gasped in awe.
The play didn’t result in a goal — Tavares’ shot was stopped — but the face of the Islanders franchise was mesmerizing even when he wasn’t lighting up the scoreboard.
It was that kind of night for the steadily improving Tavares and the suddenly resurgent Islanders, who have now won two straight games over the Rangers and Devils after a five-game losing streak.
The first line center notched his fourth career hat trick and added an assist in the Islanders’ impressive 5-1 victory over the Eastern Conference-leading Devils last night in front of 15,488 at Nassau Coliseum.
“I always thought he was an elite player since he’s come into the league and he’s starting to figure it out more and more as he matures naturally,” line-mate Matt Moulson said. “He’s one of the best in the world.”
The Islanders (6-7-1, 13 points) first win over the Devils (9-3-3, 21 points) at home in three contests also snapped their four-game losing skid on Long Island, important since they will be on home ice for eight of their next 11 contests, starting with tomorrow’s matchup with the Flyers.
Devils' destroyed by Tavares’ hat trick
New York Post | Feb 17