An independent blog on the New York Islanders and the NHL by a guy from New York.

Sunday, November 23, 2014

I will not be able to write anything tonight. Having a tough time with my Dad's health at the moment, but I will try and have something up soon.

Friday, November 21, 2014

Had something family related come up. Try and have a weekend Lookback for the Pens vs Isles games if I can't make it tomorrow either.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Islanders Ground Lightning


Your New York Islanders get a chance at revenge tonight as they face the Tampa Bay Lightning and Evgeni Nabokov at the NVMC.  Nabokov is sure to receive a warm welcome, at least at first by Isles fans for his contributions as an Islander.  Nabokov's former team mates have good things to say about the former Isles goaltender.  Islanders Captain, John Tavares said, “He was a great teammate. He fit really well in this locker room and made a big impact on a lot of us, especially myself.”   Welcome back Nabby.  The Isles will do their best to move on tonight and get one back against the Lightning.  Cal Clutterbuck is in for Cory Conacher.
 

Forwards:  Bailey-Tavares-Okposo, Kulemin-Nielsen-Grabovski, Lee-Strome-Nelson, Martin-Cizikas-Clutterbuck.

Defensive Pairings:  Leddy-Boychuk, de Haan-Hamonic, Hickey-Visnovsky.

Jaroslav Halak gets the start with Chad Johnson backing up.

 

The first period starts with Boychuk having trouble skating off the ice after sliding into the boards following an icing call, not putting much weight on his leg.  Travis Hamonic wasted no time getting reacquainted with Callahan, nor Matt Martin throwing the body early.  Boychuk returnes to the ice with Leddy.  Brock Nelson's line applying pressure as well.  Isles to the PP off an errant high stick by Nabokov & Boyle goes off for hooking, 5 on 3 for 1:07.  John Tavares misses on a nice tic-tac-toe play, then Nelson with added pressure, but Nabokov is equal to the test so far.  Isles finish the 5 on 4 without a goal.  Its another missed opportunity for New York.  Bailey hauled down on a partial break-away, but no call by the Officials.  Halak loses control on the rebound, Tampa score on the third rebound, 1-0  Lightning.  Matt Martin called for goaltender interference as he is pushed into Nabokov out of his crease.  Martin is furious.  Nabokov is booed, but the Isles to the PK.  Martin & Cizikas on a rush, Martin again pushed into Nabby again, but Killorn is called for the penalty.  Isles to PP.  Isles with some good chances again, but they come up short. Thomas Hickey with a soft interference penalty at the 19:52 mark of the first.  Isles get 12 shots on Nabokov, 5 on the PP & 3 from the 5 on 3 opportunity.  Isles 0/3 on PP in the period & 1 goal in last 19 PP chances (Staple).  Isles were soft on defense and despite coming out hard & misfired on opportunities.  They need to cash in on those kind of chances against the TBL with a motivated Nabokov that has something to prove to his old team.  They lead 12-9 in shots, trail 1-0 in the game.


In the second period, the Isles will work a 1:52 PK.  Stralman gives away the puck and Cal Clutterbuck get a SHG for his Birthday. He ties the score 1-1 and could have created a turning point in the game.  Thomas Hickey joins the rush out of the box and gets taken down by Stamkos.  Isles to the PP.  Brock Nelson with a good chance, Nabokov gathers it in.  Isles fail to score on the man advantage, that's only 1 goal in the last 20 chances.  Halak having a good period for the Isles with some nice saves.  Former Islander & Tampa assistant coach Steve Thomas gets a round of applause by the Isles faithful when he is shown on the jumbotron.  Johnny Boychuk limps to the locker room during the T.V. timeout.  Capuano sends out the revamped Kulemin-Tavares-Nelson line, then Neilsen between Grabbo and Okposo.  Mikhail Grabovski (Neilsen & Okposo) slaps one past Nabokov for a 2-1 Isles lead.  Ryan Strome (de Haan) comes out with Bailey & Lee & puts in a wrister for a 3-1 Islanders lead.  Per Eric Hornick, "Milestone assists for both Nielsen (ties K Jonsson for 18th) & Okposo (ties J Potvin for 22nd) on Grabovski goal."  Credit Coach Capuano for apparently getting this line juggling thing dialed in tonight.  Per Brett Cyrgalis, "Down a dman in Boychuk, Capuano then juggles lines - 12-18-27, 29-91-86, 84-51-21 - and gets 2 goals in 63 seconds."  Credit Coach Capuano for getting this line juggling thing dialed in tonight. That's right, I said it.  I've bashed him when I am not happy with his coaching, so I have thrown a few compliments his way when he gets results.  Isles outworking TB late in the second and Casey Cizikas draws a penalty with 7 seconds remaining.  Isles take a 3-1 lead into the dressing room and had a stronger level of play in the second half of the period after Clutterbuck's shorty.  They need to keep up their improved fore-check and manage the puck like they did in the second half of the period.  Isles lead in shots 12-9 in the period and 24-18 in the game so far.  They lead in face-offs 20-16.  Their PP is 0/2 and PK is 4/4.


Isles have 1:55 on PP time to start the third period.  Brock Nelson (Visnovsky & Nielsen) scores on the PP & puts a slap shot behind Nabokov, 4-1 Isles.  Johnny Boychuk returns to the Isles bench.  Tampa Bay puts in a rebound to make it a 4-2 game.  Rebounds have stung a little tonight.  Grabovski's skating makes things happen, Isles back to the PP.  A crosscheck by Bailey negates the man advantage. 4 on 4 for :54.  Isles kill ensuing PP with 11:30 remaining.  Casey Cizikas (Okposo) with a twisted wrister over Nabby's glove for a 5-2 Isles lead.  Anders Lee is making it difficult for anyone to talk about sending him down to Bridgeport.  Isles win 5-2. 
 
 
Shots were even at 10 in the period with Isles having a 36-28 advantage in the game.  Isles went 1/6 on the PP & 3/3 on the PK.  They held advantage in face-offs 30-21.  Jaro Halak was 26/28 with a .929 Sv%.  Cal Clutterbuck, Casey Cizikas & Mikhail Grabovski get the 3 stars of the game.  Per Matt Saidman, "Cizikas when told he was one of the stars: "Seriously?"


Points of concern for tonight's game is the health of Johnny Boychuk and his leg.  Boychuk left the bench again tonight and seemed injured after going down awkwardly in the game.  Hopefully, it doesn't become a major issue in his game and gets better in time, even if he needs to miss a few games.  The Isles PP needs to get better.  It will become more of a major deficit for the team going forward and hamstring the teams ability to stay in close games.  John Tavares continues to play hard and contribute offensively, even if it has decreased in frequency.  However, he really seems to be struggling with something in his game.  While I am sure he will rebound soon, it has been noticeable to me in each game.  Just imagine this team when he comes back with a vengeance.


The Islanders endured Tampa Bay's onslaught tonight and mounted one of their own.  In a game that focused on Nabokov's return and the specter of the Isles recent loss to the TBL, the Isles came out swinging, didn't quits and broke loose after a SHG to mount a very successful 2nd period.  For what its worth, five different Islanders (Clutterbuck, Grabovski, Strome, Nelson & Cizikas) scored tonight on even strength, PP and shorthanded chances.  I can not stress enough, how well I feel Mikhail Grabovski and Nikolay Kulemin have influenced the Islanders ability to win games so far this season.  This has been evident when they have been out of the line up and Garth Snow deserves all the credit in the world for adding them and everyone else signed or traded for in the off season.  I love Strome's development, Lee's progression and you know how I feel about Nelson.  Goaltending & defense has been better for the most part and special teams has been good at different parts of the season, but not as a tandem.  So there is room for improvement despite how hard and well this team is playing for each other.


The Isles are 12-6-0 with 24 pts. Good enough for 8th in the NHL and are 6-2-0 in the dreaded month of November.  How does that sit with you?


 
 

Isles Notes:


The BST's are enjoying the Isles depth as well. Better players aren't constantly being called up so they can mature & win together.


Per NHLFREEAGENTS, "Portland Pirates signed (F) Corey Trivino & (G) Peter Mannino to PTOs."

 

NHL Notes:


Per Shannon Hogan, "There will no longer be a dry scrape of the ice surface between the end of regulation and the start of overtime. GMs at their annual November meeting Tuesday, decided the process was taking too long. Starting Saturday, shoveled by hand."


Per Craig Custance, "Gary Bettman on advertising on jerseys: "I don’t love the trend. It’s not something we want to run off and do."


Monday, November 17, 2014

Weekend Lookback: Tampa Bay


On Saturday night, your New York Islanders faced the Lightning in Tampa Bay.  The Isles were riding a 5 game winning streak, but had trouble capitalizing on their chances and it cost them.  After a strong start, the Isles were out muscled and frustrated by the Lightning & fell to Tampa Bay by the score of 5-2.  Clutterbuck, Donovan & Strait were the scratches for the Isles.


Forwards:  Bailey-Tavares-Okposo, Grabovski-Nielsen-Kulemin, Lee-Strome-Nelson, Martin-Cizikas-Conacher.

Defnsive Pairings:  de Haan-Hamonic, Leddy-Boychuk, Hickey-Visnovsky.

Chad Johnson got the start with Jaro Halak on the bench.  Metrics.

 

Brock Nelson (Tavares & Okposo) opened the scoring and gave the Isles a 1-0 lead.  Callahan evened the score at 1-1 shortly after the Isles opening goal by beating an out of position Johnson on the short side.  But Josh Bailey (Boychuk & Leddy) got his 3rd goal of the season off a Boychuk deflection and gave the Isles a 2-1 lead.  In less than two minutes later, Tampa Bay would score two more times and take a 3-2 lead into the first intermission.  The TBL led in shots 13-11 in the period.
 

In the second & third periods, Tampa Bay scored two more times to make the score 5-2 and that is how it would all finish.  The Isles had several opportunities, but were denied by Bishop.  They were also off their game and made some out of character errors.  Watching Grabovski & Kulemin collide was a microcosm of the night.  And if that wasn't enough, it was evident that the hockey gods just weren't going to favor New York in the game.  Even Frans Nielsen was close to giving a boost to his team, but sent the puck wide.  He was very frustrated when he got back to the bench and wasn't trying to hide his disgust on the night.  Chad Johnson was 23-28 with a .821Sv%.  He struggled for much of the night including a couple of really bad goals late in the game that buried the Islanders' chances of getting back into it.  While their PK went 2/3, their PP had an 0/4 showing on the night.  The Isles continue to struggle in the face off circle, being out dueled by a 33-24 margin. 


Some positives on the night was the continued play of Brock Nelson.  His work ethic and hands are starting to elevate him from the pool of "good" NHL players.  Watching the Nelson, Strome & Lee line was something to get excited about, yet again.  These guys have skills and are improving as a line.  Josh Bailey looked good again in his second game off injury.  The Islanders moved the puck well and got some good chances, but couldn't convert against a good Tampa team.  In some ways, the Isles can learn a lot by their experience in the game.  While we know they are a very good team, Tampa Bay executed and repelled all the Isles had for them.  They need to use this as motivation to get even better.  Their first opportunity will come tomorrow night against the same Lightning team at the NVMC.



 

Isles Notes:


Lines at Practice:  Bailey-Tavares-Okposo, Kulemin-Nielsen-Grabovski, Lee-Grabner-Strome-Nelson, Martin-Cizikas-Conacher-Clutterbuck.

 
With Bishop in net against the Rangers tonight, Evgeni Nabokov could very well see action tomorrow night on the Island.


Per Arthur Staple, "Capuano: Grabner not ready yet, but "I think he'll be cleared (to return) pretty soon." Clutterbuck ready to go tomorrow.  Where Grabner skated "no indication of where he'll be when he gets back." Also says waiver status won't determine roster move...  Translation of last two tweets, to me anyway: Lee is staying."


Why was Josh Ho-Sang traded?  “I don’t fake the team concept,” Ho-Sang said. “I truly believe it takes a team to win. I also believe in myself and I’m not afraid to tell people that.” 



Friday, November 14, 2014

Islanders Refuse To Lose Vs. Panthers


Tonight, your New York Islanders face the Panthers in Florida & look for their 5th straight win.  Per Islanders.nhl.com, A win would tie a franchise record of winning 11 of the first 16 games to start the season. The Islanders won 11 of their first 16 four times before (1976-77, 1982-83, 1987-88, 2001-02).  Josh Bailey comes of IR, Eric Boulton goes on IR & Jaroslav Halak is in goal tonight looking to extend his shut out streak into and through a third game.  Ex-Islander, Roberto Luongo is in net for the Panthers.  While the Islanders have outscored their opponents by an 11-3 margin over the past four games, the Panthers don't score a lot of goals at less than 2 per game average, but they have an eastern conference best in goals against at 2.31.


Forwards:  Kulemin-Tavares-Okposo, Grabovski-Nielsen-Bailey, Nelson-Strome-Lee, Martin-Cizikas-Clutterbuck.

Defensive Pairings:  de Haan-Hamonic, Leddy-Boychuk, Hickey-Visnovsky.

As mentioned before, Jaro Halak is in net with Chad Johnson backing up.



In the first period, the Isles go on a PP just :36 seconds in, but fail to score with just 3 shots on goal.  Tavares takes a pass from Kulemin and comes close to getting a goal.  Lee feeds JT a few seconds later, and Luongo makes the stop again.  Clutterbuck with a chance, but nothing there.  Isles putting on the pressure in Florida's zone, but Florida penetrates and scores, 1-0 Panthers, streak is over at 12:37 of the first.  Eric Hornick mentions the streak is over for team at 193:48 & Halak at 156:04.  Isles still skating well making the Panthers work to maintain their lead.  After 1, the Panthers hold a 1-0 lead in the game. NY ahead in shots, 11-8.  Is is important to note that the Isles trail after the first period for only 2nd time all season (Hornick).


The second period starts with the Isles right back on the attack, but Luongo has been there again.  They need to bump and screen the Florida net a little more to change their fortunes.  Lee puts a dangerous deflection on net from Boychuk, but Luongo makes the save at the 6:31 mark of the second period.  Isles to the PK, ward off Panthers.  John Tavares (Okposo & Bailey) makes it 1-1 game off a one-timer from K.O. That's Career point #332 for Tavares, passing Ziggy Palffy for 16th on Isles all-time list (JT is now 16th all-time in goals, assists & points -Hornick.)  Ryan Strome (Hickey & Halak) dekes & scores off a break-a-way just 1:59 later, now 2-1 Isles.   It's Strome's 2nd in as many games.  Isles back to the PK.  Panthers say they have scored.  Halak pins bouncing puck under the crossbar with the back of his head. "No goal" after the review.  Replay shows puck rested on Halak's left shoulder against where his right ear would be, on the line at best. Isles kill another one.  Period ends with Strome going back at Thorton's crosscheck with his own version.  Love it.  2-1 Isles after a two big goals by the Isles and a Jedi ear, shoulder save by Halak.  Shots at 24-18, New York.


John Tavares victimized by a weak hooking call to start the third period, Isles to the PK.  Isles come close again, Luongo makes the stop on the short handed attempt.  Halak stops Huberdeau, Hamonic with the clear.  PK is over, Isles 3 of 3 tonight.  Nikolay Kulemin puts in a Boychuk rebound for his first even strength goal on the year, Isles lead 3-1.  Kulemin rings another one off the post.  Isles back to the PP.  Tavares called for a slash.  Bad penalty there for JT.  Just after the 4 on 4 ends, Panthers score, 3-2 Isles.  Isles back to the PK off a another slash by Bailey. Isles losing their discipline and need to refocus before they let Luongo & the Panthers back in this.  Clutterbuck denied on the short handed break away and paid the price, Isles kill the penalty.  Bailey takes Clutterbuck's spot in the line-up.  Isles flub the clear and the Panthers tie the game at 3-3 as puck deflects off Halak.  Isles to the PP, fail to score and time expires with the score tied.  Isles secure a point with over-time coming.  New York led in shots, 32-29, behind in the face-off circle by a 34-25 margin.  Halak was a mortal, 26-29 with an .897Sv% in regulation, but did have some very strong saves on the night, which isn't over just yet.


In the O.T. period, the Islanders played catch up to the Panthers pressure, forced to play defense for much of the extra time.  Halak has been good in the O.T.  Florida calls a time out with 1:39 remaining.  Panthers put a shot on Halak, a scrum ensues and the Isles go to the PK for the final 1:03.  Halak with a big save on Boyes & Jokinen.  Hickey with a huge clear as time expires.  Halak made 9 saves in the O.T. period to raise his Sv% to .921.  Isles were 0/3 on the PP, but 5/6 on the PK.  Shoot out upcoming.


Frans Nielsen scores!


Huberdeau scores.


Kyle Okposo undresses Luongo!


Jokinen is stopped by Halak.


John Tavares is stopped.


Boyes is stopped by Halak.  Isles win 4-3 in the shootout.

 

The Islanders stopped skating & took some bad penalties that allowed Florida to gain some confidence and climb back into the game.  John Tavares has been good for much of the year, but has had his share of struggles and uncharacteristic mental lapses as well.  Jack Capuano is not at fault for tonight's partial collapse.  It was clearly more of a player driven lapse by way of on-ice error and not just team focus.  Just another example of this teams tendency to seemingly play down to the level of an apparent, lesser team's level.  Credit Florida for playing a good game though and giving the Isles all they could handle.  Dale Talon is doing a great job there.  We will have to wait and see what the word is on Cal Clutterbuck after leaving the ice tonight.  Hopefully he isn't seriously hurt.


The Isles had some positive contributions tonight.  Jaroslav Halak was strong on the PK all night & rebounded late to keep his team in the game.  John Tavares did score and it was a big goal in the first period to tie the score.  He's a gamer and always leads by example, even when he struggles with his own game.  Josh Bailey looked good in his first game back and picked up an assist.  Nikolay Kulemin had another strong performance on both sides of the puck and picked up an even strength goal.  Ryan Strome continues to improve as an NHL player by playing smart more consistently.  I thought Anders Lee had a strong effort tonight, despite not getting onto the score sheet.  Frans Nielsen & Kyle Okposo came up big in the shoot-out to seal the deal.  The defense played well as a unit and made ground when they had to do so.  Most of all, don't forget that the Isles win their 5th straight game tonight by a 4-3 score in the shoot-out, gain a second point on the night.  Oh, and looking at the big picture, they just might be 11-5 on the season.  Yes, 11 & 5.


 


Isles Notes:


Isles have games tomorrow (A) & Tuesday (H) against the Lightening, 7PM starts and Friday (A) & Saturday (H) against the Penguins, 7PM starts.


Before tonight's game:

John Tavares – 11 assists from 200.

Nikolay Kulemin – 14 goals from 100.

Josh Bailey - 19 points from 200.


Joshua Ho-Sang traded from OHL Windsor to Niagara.  Will make his IceDogs debut tonight.
 
 

Brent Thompson on Ryan Pulock: "I do see a comparable, if he elevates his game, I do see that Drew Doughty comparable."
 


Sound Tigers Notes:

 
The BST win their fourth straight, defeating the HWP 6-1 in Hartford! Rematch tomorrow at 7PM.  Poulin with 34 saves and BST match their highest goal count in Hartford.  Poulin, Pulock & McDonald get the 3 stars of the night.


Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Isle Be There: Yes!, Section 329 & The Blue And Orange Army


In a series of articles called, Isle be there, my intention is to focus on the different social groups that support your New York Islanders team & its players.  This will also include current events or situations in and around the team as it relates to its fan base.


I love going to the Coliseum to see the Isles play.  I love the atmosphere and the whole excitement of the day.  I usually try and show up several hours before the pre game skate when I am able, and take my time easing into the whole game day experience.  That might include getting a jersey signed from players leaving the Marriott or checking out the team store to see what new stuff appeals to me.  But the coolest part of the day is always talking to other fans.  


The best way to get my fill of the Islanders was always on the team's official site or reading a good blog like the ones by Chris Botta or Dee Karl.  It was a way to feel more connected and to be involved in everything Islanders centric.  Several years back when I was in between games, I found a place on Isles message boards like Islander Mania & N.Y. Islanders Country.  More recently, I have found the draw of groups and pages dedicated to the team on Twitter, Facebook, Google and NYI Reddit to get my fill of Isles culture.


 One of the groups I noticed at games were the Blue & Orange Army in section 329.  They were always there in force and always struck me as a dedicated bunch of fans.  From their sweet tailgates to their community outreach drives, section 329 were a group I wanted to learn more about.  I do know that the group's origin hail from two buddies, Bill McCue & Phil Fairbanks who used to sit atop section 329 during the lean years surrounding the 2009 draft.  The friends were so hardcore, they would chant "John Tavares" when a visiting team would score a goal to show their spirit was true blue (&orange) and unbroken.  While I am not the first one to write about them, I still want to talk about my experiences with the group and an informal, but constant friendship I have with one of their members.



Pat Lehmann (@631life on Twitter) is a vocal and loyal fan of your New York Islanders.  He is also a member of the BOA that I have gotten to know through my time on Twitter and Facebook.  While he grew up a Rangers fan because he was 6 yrs old in '94 and didn't know any better, he soon realized his Long Island roots ran deep. He was exposed to his native Islanders team around the age of 13 and became a big fan of then Isles Captain, Michael Peca.  Pat watched the Isles of the early 2000's. A team whose success included the infamous, but very short playoff run that featured the Shawn Bates penalty shot.  Now, guys like Grabovski & Nelson are among his favorites.


My focus on Pat and his 329 faithful tonight revolves around their apparently controversial adaptation of WWE's Daniel Bryan's Yes! chant.  You see, the Blue & Orange army are made of many different personalities, some of which are big soccer fans who regularly attend New York Red Bulls or New York Cosmos games.  Part of the football culture is the passion of the team songs and elaborate chants made famous by their die hard fans.  Section 329 adapted this tradition to their home team Islanders hockey club.  I know this is done to support the team and more importantly, its players, while attending games at the Coliseum.  These chants are just as loud & passionate when the Isles are having a bad game or a woeful season as when they are winning.  They are not something that is done just to get attention or irritate anybody.  It's an honest, infectious enthusiasm designed to give the players on the ice an audible boost and to make them understand their fans are behind them, no matter what is going on in the game.


The Yes! chant was first chanted by 329 about 2 years ago to celebrate a goal being scored.  The BOA noticed that it was an easy chant to understand & that other fans were soon joining in the celebration ritual, so they made it a thing.  But not everyone is a fan.  There has been calls made to the Islanders organization by some Season Ticket Holders to have the chant stopped at games.  While the Islanders didn't respond to my request to give their position on the subject, Pat Lehmann wanted me to know he and his fellow 329'ers don't plan on stopping their Yes! Yes! Yes!, or any other chant recited by the Army.  "I'm still going to go to the games and I'm not going to stop," Lehmann said.  "None of us are.  We are there to cheer on our boys and no one is going to stop us."  Pat reminded me that he always has fun at the home games, even the ones that don't result in a win.  He said it was about supporting the team and spending quality time with his friends.  I know what he means, but I am OK with more Isles wins for once.  I'm just sayin'.


If you haven't gotten to a New York Islanders game early on game day and walked the tailgate circuit, I advise you to do it as often as you can this season. Because after this year, the team will relocate to Brooklyn and fans will need to park in the large garages scattered across the borough or take the train to each game.  That means the only way to socialize is in the concourse, cramped bars or local restaurants. 


Please don't miss out on a great NVMC Isles tradition.  Get together in person or on-line with the many social groups who support the team and their players.  Truly celebrate your New York Islanders and what it means to be a fan with those who share your passion.


Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Islanders Unleash Avalanche On Avalanche


Tonight, your New York Islanders celebrate Veteran's Day by facing the Colorado Avalanche at the NVMC.  The memory of their 5-0 defeat in Colorado is sure to motivate the Isles, as is their recent string of road trip wins.  Jaro Halak is in net tonight and playing his best hockey of the year.  Johnny Boychuk will return to the line up and there is sure to be a loud bunch of fans at the coliseum cheering on their team.  Arthur Staple quoted Boychuk on Clifford hit: "When I see it again, it doesn't look like a good hit. I'm just happy it wasn't as bad as it could have been." 

Jiggs has the call again tonight.  Andy Grazziano points out the Isles are 13-1-3 in last 17 games that he has called.



Forwards:  Kulemin-Tavares-Okposo, Grabovski-Nielsen-Clutterbuck, Lee-Strome-Nelson, Martin-Cizikas-Conacher.

 
Defensive Pairings:  Leddy-Boychuk, De Haan-Hamonic, Hickey-Visnovsky.

Jaroslav Halak is in net with Chad Johnson backing up.
 
 

 


In the first period, the Isles wasted no time coming out with a lot of jump.  They controlled play early and scored their first of the game almost as fast.  Nick Leddy (Boychuk & Strome) puts a wrist shot past Varlamov for a 1-0 Isles lead.  It's Leddy's 100th NHL career point.  New York continues to press and Anders Lee puts one in off a set Zamboni door play by Boychuk to make it 2-0 Islanders.  Jaro Halak hasn't been very busy, but is looking good so far in the period.  Cal Clutterbuck is denied on a break away opportunity.  Some of tonight's calls have been suspect to say the least.  When Jiggs calls you out, you have been called out.  Isles will have PP time remaining to start the second.  Out shooting Avs 13-5.
 


 
The Isles fail to score on the remainder of their PP chance to start the second period.  Travis Hamonic (Tavares & Kulemin) rips a slap shot past Varlamov to make it 3-0 Islanders.  Isles doing a great job with their "puck management."  They are moving the puck well and executing a strong possession game thus far, dominating the neutral and defensive zone play.  Isles go to the PK, but Nikolay Kulemin (Nielsen) backhands a SHG to make it a 4-0 game for New York.  Isles finish the period in relentless fashion and have really shown up to play so far tonight.  "We're trying to keep with the game plan & listen to what the coaches want us to do" - Kulemin.  Shots advantage to New York, 28-13, 24-23 in the circle.  Oh, and Nikolay is his own inspiration.  Nice.

BTW, Section 329 has been heard loud & clear over the air.
 
 
 

In the third period, Casey Cizikas (Visnovsky & Conacher) is rewarded for his hard work on his first goal of the season, 5-0 Islanders.  Two minutes later, Ryan Strome (Nelson) makes it a 6-0 game with his first of the season.  Touchdown Islanders!  Butch Goring with a great point on Roy leaving MTL for not getting taken out in a blow out game.  Kyle Okposo with JT in the middle puts a sweet pass to the stick of Kulemin, but puck misses up high.   Isles finish the game strong, with a 6-0 trouncing of the Avalance.  They outshoot Colorado 46-20 in the game and finish 1/6 on the PP and 3/3 on the PK.  They maintained a 35-32 edge in face-offs.


Halak, Kulemin & Strome get the stars of the game.


On a day to remember all that our war veterans allow us to enjoy, your Isles Improve to 10-5 on the season after collecting 8 straight points, get their 4th win in a row.  How good can they be when all their top players are in sync and they get healthy?  Tonight's game was the biggest margin of victory since the Pittsburgh blowout when your Isles team had their coming of age & put the NHL on notice.  Leddy, Lee, Hamonic, Kulemin, Cizikas and Strome score for the Islanders. Jaro Halak stops everything for his second straight shut out.  Halak has a shut out streak of over 146 minutes and counting.  A streak that is only 18 minutes shy of the franchise record. 
 
 
 
 
It was a tactical, well played & physical effort by the Isles.  They were able to take Colorado completely off their game tonight.  The Isles out scored their opponents 12-3 on winning streak and have only allowed 5 goals in their last 6 games.  And that's a 14-1-3 record when Jiggs calls the game.

Enjoy your ample supply of Papa Johns & Wendy's chili tomorrow.

 

Isles Notes:


On Saturday November 22nd, The Blue And Orange Army will be holding the 2nd Annual BOA Thanksgiving Food Drive. It will be held prior to the Islanders game vs. the Pittsburgh Penguins from 1PM to 6PM at our usual tailgate spot outside the plaza. Donations can include items such as canned goods, pastas, cereals, stuffing, instant mashed potatoes etc. Grillmaster Teese Will be cooking up food, $5 donation per person and Steve Clay will also be setting up the XBOX for NHL 14 Games at $5 donation per game. Lastly, we will be hosting the 1st BOA Thanksgiving open invitational 2 on 2 street hockey tournament, $5 donation per person player, Goalies play free.  All donations will be going to Trinity Church Soup Kitchen in Coram and St Frances de Chantal soup kitchen in Wantagh.

Trade Rumors:  Word is that there are none in the works.  To get an impact player, you need to give one up. Or you need to give up the high picks that the Isles don't have or top young players they already have designs on.  Salary dumps are a possible scenario, but the Isles have a much higher payroll now, more depth & good chemistry that they don't want to risk upsetting.

Isles prospect, Alan Quine is on a 7-game point streak and has tallied a goal in the last three games.
 
Mikko Koskinen (Sibir) was named a KHL player of the week for his play in net.

Per @NHLhistorygirl, "Bobby Nystrom had no idea he'd been drafted in 1972 until his dad called & told him. "I said, 'Who are the New York Islanders?"

Former Islander Goaltender, Yann Danis signed a PTO with Norfolk in the AHL.

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Coming Soon....