Ross Johnston scores his first NHL goal to open up the scoring for the Islanders! pic.twitter.com/zOawoJyBKg
— NHL Daily 365 (@NHLDaily365) January 26, 2018
Ross Johnston slid his first-career NHL goal through Marc-Andre Fleury’s five-hole to put the Islanders ahead in Sin City.
With a scoreless contest heading into the halfway point of the second period, a clutch rush by the New York Islanders fourth line put the Islanders ahead in their first-ever road game in Las Vegas.
Ryan Pulock dished a pass over to Ross Johnston, who backhanded it in front of the net to a patient Cal Clutterbuck, and at first glance, he appeared to have tapped home the loose change for the Islanders first goal and the game’s icebreaker.
However, a closer look shows Ross Johnston putting the puck off of the Vegas defenseman, which ricocheted through Marc-Andre Fleury and into the net.
Ross Johnston on his 1st NHL goal to Shannon: “The whole experience. A tremendous honor/ I don’t know what to say.” #Isles
— Rob Taub (@RTaub_) January 26, 2018
Johnston’s first-career goal comes just in the nick of time for the Islanders, who took the lead against a high-power Vegas offense.
Johnston now has two points in his three games up in the NHL this season and has been breathing new life into the Islanders fourth line since his recall.
Since Nikolay Kulemin went down in November on a hit from Eric Gryba, the fourth line struggled to find a new identity, and for the first time since there seems to be new energy bleeding into the Isles bottom-six.
The Islanders currently lead the Vegas Golden Knights 1-0 heading into the third period on MSG+.