Series (Game 1 of 4)

Washington leads 4-0

Game 1: Saturday, October 12th
Game 2: Saturday, December 21st
Game 3: Monday, January 13th
Game 4: Friday, February 7th

Capitals 2

(2-0-0, 4 pts)

Islanders 1

(0-2-0, 0 pts)

7:00 PM ET, October 12, 2002

Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum, Uniondale, New York

1 2 3 T
WSH 0 1 12
NYI 1 0 01

S. Konowalchuk (Capitals - LW): Goals: 0, Assists: 0

J. Jagr (Capitals - RW): Goals: 1, Assists: 0

O. Kolzig (Capitals - G): Saves: 35, Save Pct.: .972

Jagr's power-play goal sends Caps past Isles

UNIONDALE, N.Y. (AP) -- Jaromir Jagr says he's not at the top of his game yet, even after scoring in each of the Washington Capitals' first two contests.


Jagr scored a power-play goal with 4:36 left Saturday night, lifting Washington to a 2-1 victory over the New York Islanders in a game in which the Capitals had only 14 shots.

The five-time scoring champion with the Pittsburgh Penguins slumped last season in his first year with the Capitals. But he's off to a fast start now. The Capitals are 2-0 and Jagr has two goals and two assists.

"Of course I'm happy. I'm happy to play hockey, that's the whole key,'' he said. "Hopefully I'm going to get better, then we're going to have a better chance to win.''

Calle Johansson's poorly struck shot trickled to Jagr near the right post. He sent the puck toward goalie Chris Osgood, who got his right pad on it but knocked it into the net.

The Capitals have mastered the art of banking in shots off goalies. On Friday, Peter Bondra scored when his shot struck the glass behind the net and caromed in when it hit the back of Nashville goalie Mike Dunham.

"It's hockey,'' Jagr said. "Sometimes the good one you miss, the bad one goes in. Early in the season I'll take anything.''

Well, almost anything.

Rookie coach Bruce Cassidy shook up his lines following the first period after Washington was outshot 16-3 by the Islanders, who played their home opener. A worn-out Jagr took seven shifts and was on the ice for 6 minutes, 45 seconds of the second period.

"He's in great shape,'' Cassidy said. "He wants the puck and he wants his minutes. He wants to be the go-to guy.''

Jagr got to the point, though, where he wanted Cassidy to go to someone else.

"He killed me in the second period,'' Jagr said with a laugh. "I didn't want to be there then. He kept playing me like every other shift. I couldn't go anymore. I was so tired in the second period.''

Glen Metropolit tied it 1-1 at 15:08 of the second period during a delayed New York penalty.

The Islanders nearly took the lead 2:29 into the third when Jason Wiemer jammed a puck at Olaf Kolzig at the right post. Wiemer raised his hands in celebration, and the goal light went on, but video replay showed the puck didn't completely clear the line.

"It doesn't matter if it's game No. 2 or game No. 82, if you get a lot of chances and lot of shots and they don't go in it gets frustrating,'' Islanders right wing Mark Parrish said.

The Capitals continued their parade to the penalty box that began Friday when they committed 10 infractions against Nashville. Washington was whistled for 10 more, and a call for too many men on the ice led to the Islanders' goal.

"If you're not on the special teams you shouldn't even dress because you're not going to get to play that much,'' Jagr said.

Just 38 seconds after Metropolit went to the box to serve the penalty, Alexei Yashin fired a wrist shot from the left circle that cleared Kolzig's glove and went into the top right corner with 5:07 left in the first period.

Kolzig kept the Capitals in it. After the rough first 20 minutes, Washington was outshot 8-6 in the second period and 36-14 for the game.

"We managed to get out of the first period with only being down one. That's the goalie's job,'' Kolzig said. "It's not so much how many saves you make, it's when you make the saves.''

Except for a partial breakaway by Bondra in the second period, Osgood was hardly tested by anything difficult until the third. He was helped twice when pucks struck the goal posts in the second period before Washington tied it.

New York, which opened 9-0-1-1 last season and reached the playoffs for the first time since 1994, fell to 0-2.

"I think this year is a lot more realistic,'' said defenseman Adrian Aucoin, who played his 450th NHL game. "We can forget about the first game, and tonight we were more the team we wanted to be.''

The Islanders have only two power-play goals in 18 chances this season, going 1-for-9 in both games.

"Everything pretty much went the way we wanted except the score,'' Aucoin said.

Game notes

It was the 30th anniversary of the Islanders' first victory at Nassau Coliseum -- a 3-2 win over the Los Angeles Kings on Oct. 12, 1972. ... Kip Miller, New York's leading goal-scorer in last season's playoffs, is now with Washington. His older brother, Kelly, a longtime Capitals player, is an Islanders assistant coach. ... Washington began an eight-game road trip and is not home again until Oct. 30 against Boston.

Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press