New York Islanders: Two Steps Forward and Two Steps Back

Frank Trovato@@voiceislanderfnCorrespondent IDecember 14, 2011

Al Montoya is Human
Al Montoya is HumanRichard Wolowicz/Getty Images

The Islanders are on a bit of a merry-go-round right now. 

After ending their annual horrid stretch of futility, the team gave everyone a bit of hope by stringing together some solid performances and getting some points and managed to get to within five points of eighth place in the East. 

Enter Pittsburgh

The Islanders played well enough in the first jumping out to a 2-0 lead before folding like an accordion in losing 6-3. 

Last night against Montreal, they managed to make it competitive coming back from 3-1 down before losing, 5-3. 

The most troubling element of these losses was the play of Al Montoya, who for the first time does not look so good. 

The Islanders will not put together the kind of streak they need unless for the first time this season they can all manage to achieve some level of consistency as a group. The talent is in the locker room, but in these losses it always seems like one aspect of the team, whether it be offense, defense or goal-tending, fails in grand fashion. 

Evgeni Nabokov will probably get the green light on Thursday against the Dallas Stars and hopefully he can rebound from his sore hamstring and give the Islanders some stability in the crease. 

It seems like the Islanders go well enough during a game until something happens that completely derails the team, whether it be a blown call a bad goal against or a failed power play. 

This young team has the talent to compete every night; the problem is they are failing to compete every night because of one problem or another. Jack Capuano and company have to feel like they are trying to plug a leaky dam and are running out of fingers. 

The Islanders are still capable of salvaging this season, hopefully they can develop some consistency before the whole damn gives way.