With the first two games have come and gone of their playoff series, Nick Leddy has yet to stand out for the Islanders. This has been something of note even as the Isles were able to get the split heading home for game three on Thursday night.
What’s missing is Leddy seems to be missing his edge.
Leddy had his moments in the regular season that presented him to be a force coming into the postseason having recorded 29 assists. That being said, the Islanders have witnessed no shortage of inconsistency through the series thus far, and unfortunately, Leddy has been one of the main culprits.
There are a variety of factors that could go into why he is not performing the way that fans have expected. For starters, the last time the Islanders played Pittsburgh was March 29. The way the Penguins play in comparison to other teams is attacking with speed and having more dominant players, as we have seen the last few games with such being Sidney Crosby and Kris Letang. It may be about trying to find his game and adapting to dealing with Pittsburgh’s speed and heaviness. Watching Leddy in his own zone has been a gong show.
“At the end of the day I thought that they had more desperation in their game and I thought we were a little bit light in some areas and we didn’t make it hard enough on them.” head coach Barry Trotz said after game two.
READ MORE: Repetto: Islanders Need To Overcome Inconsistencies To Take Down Penguins
Again, this comes at an ill fortune time as this series is going to be a battle of attrition. Some have predicted it will last six or seven games. If the Islanders want to cut it short and take their wins as quickly as possible, they need to get Leddy to contribute and have him start to make a noticeable impact on the ice.
“Just come out better, we just got to come out better, there’s no magic pill that I can give everybody to take this and we’ll have a good start, it comes from within,” Trotz added last night. “They got to simplify, they got to be ready to go. They got to not ease into the game, they got to establish that right off the bat.”
Come puck drop tomorrow night, everyone will be attentive in how the Islanders hit the ice. Trotz is pushing for an aggressive start tomorrow night from his group. Leddy is right at the top of that list.
Leddy is a big piece for the Islanders and needs to show it after an underwhelming first few games. Additionally, he’s one of the team’s most important players on the backend. Moving forward, hopefully, he must push himself harder and become a difference-maker the rest of the series.
Follow Bri on Twitter at @RepettoBri