Bruins vs. Islanders preview: Teams take national stage on NBCSN

Jim McIsaac

New York and Boston to meet for second time this season.

The New York Islanders (8-10-1) will host the Boston Bruins (11-2-2) at Nassau Coliseum on Tuesday night.

It will mark the second of three meetings between the two teams this season.

In their first contest, Boston managed to earn a 4-2 win. Captain Zdeno Chara registered the game-winning goal, while Tuukka Rask was credited with the win after stopping 24 of 26 attempts. The Bruins also received scoring from Patrice Bergeron, Gregory Campbell and Shawn Thornton, while rookie Dougie Hamilton recorded a team-high two assists.

Keith Aucoin scored both Islanders goals, while Rick DiPietro was tagged with the loss after allowing four goals on 27 shots.

Boston will be entering the night on a three-game winning streak. The club has managed three or more goals in each game over that span. In addition, it has registered points in seven of eight games played in February, with its lone loss coming to the Buffalo Sabres on Feb. 15.

While the team's power play has struggled to produce (entering the night ranked 25th in the league, 14.9 success rate), the Bruins boast the league's top-rated penalty kill (94.8 percent).

That unit might be tested on Tuesday night, as the Islanders' special teams have performed well this season. The power play will enter the night ranked fifth in the NHL (24.4 percent) and the penalty kill is ranked eighth (84.1 percent).

The team dropped its most recent contest, but has recorded wins in two of its last three games. Currently sitting in last place in the Atlantic Division, the club could pull even with the Philadelphia Flyers in third place with a win on Tuesday night.

However, the real story lies with the standout play of forward John Tavares. Currently tied with Steven Stamkos for the league lead in goals, Tavares is four points off the league lead in total points trailing Stamkos (29) and Sidney Crosby (28). The Islanders' star will enter Tuesday night on a three-game point steak (two goals, three assists) and has compiled 13 goals, as well as 12 assists this season.

The game between the Bruins and Islanders is scheduled to begin at 7:30 p.m. ET and will be televised nationally in the United States on NBC Sports Network.

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