On paper, Monday was an excellent night for Barry Trotz and the New York Islanders.
The Islanders topped the Colorado Avalanche 4-1, keeping the Avs’ scorching-hot top line mostly in check. Nathan MacKinnon grabbed an assist on Gabriel Landeskog‘s power-play goal, but Mikko Rantanen was held pointless for the first time in ages. Also, with the Pittsburgh Penguins falling to the Ducks in regulation, the Isles regained control of the third spot in the Metropolitan Division.
So, the Islanders mostly contained the NHL’s hottest scoring line, and with this win, would be in the 2019 Stanley Cup Playoffs if they began right now.
It wasn’t all good news, though.
Two injuries hang over this win, and one brings potential controversy. As you can see in the video above this post’s headline, Avs defenseman Ian Cole seemingly engaged in a knee-to-knee hit on Isles forward Brock Nelson. Cole received a kneeing minor on the play.