Former Islanders are helping lead the charge on teams around the league. On Friday FIs were active in many of 9 games up for contention accounting for 3 goals, 1 assist and a loss in net. Let us look at the FI efforts:
* Stephen Valiquette, filling in for the recently lackluster Henrik Lundqvist, was saddled with a loss as the New York Rangers dropped a 4-2 decision to the host Atlanta Thrashers. Valiquette stopped 18 of 21 shots but fell to 1-1-1 on the season.
* Where is the Islanders' offense? Not in South Florida as the Isles dropped a 3-0 decision to the Panthers. Tossing in an easy goal was FI Olli Jokinen who scored on the empty net with 12 seconds remaining in regulation. The goal was O-Jok's 15th of the season and his 30th point overall on 29 games.
* Word coming out of Orange County is that the Ducks are going to shift defenseman Mathieu Schneider to a forward position in the coming days. No, not really, but Schneider continues to burn it up as he scored another goal on Friday. The offensively-inclined d-man scored the third Ducks' goal and his 4th of the season to boost Anaheim to a 5-3 road win over the Chicago Blackhawks. Schneider now has 12 points (4 goals, 8 assists) on only 15 games and has 3 points (1 goal, 2 assists) in his last 2 games overall.
* The Edmonton Oilers' Robert Nilsson is on one of the hottest streaks of his young career. On the other hand, the Oilers are still as bad as ever. Nilsson scored his 3rd goal of the season as the Oil dropped a 4-3 home decision against the St. Louis Blues. Nilsson received second star of the game honors and now has 10 points (3 goals, 7 assists) on 22 games this season. He currently has a 5 game point scoring streak in which he has notched 2 goals and 3 assists. The streak is the longest he has ever had.
* Ryan Smyth continues to provide for Colorado while in the midst of a personal high point to the season. Smyth had an assist on the powerplay, game winning goal with 3 seconds remaining in the second period as the Avalanched edged the visiting Philadelphia Flyers 2-1. Smyth has managed 21 points (8 goals, 13 assists) on 28 games this season. Over the last 4 games, Smyth has 7 points on 2 goals and 5 assists.
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