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Islanders' Evgeni Nabokov gets pulled in Game 1

By Adam Gretz | Hockey writer

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If the New York Islanders are going to have a chance in their opening-round series against the Pittsburgh Penguins they're going to need their starting goaltender, Evgeni Nabokov, to be great.

He was not great on Wednesday night, surrendering four goals in less than 24 minutes of hockey before being benched early in the second period in favor of backup Kevin Poulin.

Two of the goals, a pair of power-play tallies from Beau Bennett and Kris Letang, were not particularly good goals to give up in such a game, and it was enough to wonder if Nabokov was 100 percent.

Early in the first period he was hit in the face by a Jarome Iginla one-timer that appeared to leave him shaken up for a minute. Nabokov remained in the game and just minutes later gave up the first of his four goals (shown above).

Islanders coach Jack Capuano insisted after the game that Nabokov was not injured after he was hit by the shot and said the reason he took him out was because he didn't want to leave him in the game to continue getting hung out to dry.

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