Of late, the New York Islanders have been on an up-swing. They've won their last 4 games, giving them a winning record of 5-4-5, and if the playoffs were to start tomorrow, we'd qualify for the 7th seed in the Eastern Conference. What's happened? In our first 6 we were winless and had a record of 0-3-3!
What finally clicked with this team is what i've been talking about, team synergy, everyone working together. Coach Scott Gordon hasn't changed his line combinations since last Wednesday's game against the Rangers. Our 1st forward line, consisting of Kyle Okposo, John Tavares, and Matt Moulson has combined for 5 goals in the last 4 games. Not to mention scoring coming from elsewhere, like LW Jeff Tambellini, who put up a hat trick Saturday night, or Defenseman Brendan Witt who had his first career two-goal game last night. And in other news, rookie-phenom John Tavares has 5 goals, (11 pts) in 14 games.
Goaltending-wise, Dwayne Roloson and Martin Biron are sporting a 9.14 and 9.11 SV% respectively and only a 2.7 GAA. Judging from what i've seen, Roli' and Marty will be able to hold the fort pretty well until Rick DiPietro becomes healthy enough to start games, (making Roloson & Biron serious trade bait).
Of course every season will have some downturns, but if the Islanders can keep it up, you're looking at a serious, playoff-caliber team. I didn't say the Islanders are going to win the cup just yet, but in comparison to our last few, it's been a pretty damn good start.no comments
It was the Oilers first trip back to the Coliseum since December of 2005 and it was Steve Tamballini's second trip in two 3 days. The Oilers also had not won in the Coliseum since 1999 and the Islanders made sure it stayed that way.
The Oilers opened up the scoring in the first with a lucky bounce off the toe of Radik Martinek that would get by Roloson, the goal was credited to Ethan Moreau at 11:02. A few minutes later the Oilers had anothe great opportunity, but were denied by Roloson who made a big save. The Islanders stayed determined through and kept work t make opportunities, it payed off. Doug Weight took down two Oilers behind the Oiler net leaving allowing Matt Moulson to pick the puck up and give it a the wide open John Tavares who tied the game at one. At the point momentum shifted for the Isles as they continued to pressure the Oiler net creating several scoring chances in front of the net. The go ahead goal though, would come from an unlikely defenseman, Brendan Witt. Firing a lose shot, Witt beat Khabibulin to give the Islanders the 2-1 lead. Then Witt sealed the Islanders win by firing another shot from the point that once again got by Khabibulin, Guaranteeing an Isles win, giving him his first career two goal game, and coming within inches of a hat trick goal. no comments
Today while searching for videos of the fights that took place at the Islanders/Rangers game Wednesday night, I stumbled upon a video, thatfor some reason made me very agitated. Watch the video and then continue:
WhatI did not realize after watching this video was who shot it, if you read the video title it says Opie's Eye. If you don't pick up on it, don't worry neither did I untillI followed the links. It was none other than Opie, from the Opie and Anthony show on XM satellite radio.
Opie, who attended the game, was embarrassed by the "minor league" Chuck-A-Puck promotion the Islanders had during the intermission. You can hear in thevideoOpie and his friendgiving their input on it, "Stupid" and"This isminor League Shit." Opiealso tweeted, "I'm so embarrassed by what they did between periods at the Islander game last night."If you think about it,it sort of is in a way, most NHL teams to my knowldegedo not have anything like this, but can be seen in many AHL and other junior league arenas. It was seen back at the coliseum when ths Sound Tigers played the Penguins in the AHL playoffs and seemed to be a big hit. So i assume the Islanders brass thought they'd try it out with the Isles.
What irks me about these comments is, whats the big deal? Is ourhockey team judged on their in game promotions or their play on the ice. I look as these comments and see someone who is way too nit picky about every single detail and needs to just lighten up.Going to a game is suppose to be a fun, family friendly experience and whileit may get out ofhand (especially atan Isles/Ragsgame) the promotions and in game entertainment is geared toward that. If that is "minor league" than so be it, if it's stupid so be it,this is one areai have to say, just let itgo forgod's sake. IS IT THAT BIG OF A DEAL.
For the record though this was not aimed at Opie in particular, he just had the remarks that inspired this post. Also their is one thing i would suggest doing, maybe give the arena hostes a pair flat shoes and a pairof jeans (or atleast a longer skirt). Come on how is she really suppose to walk the ice and bend over to pick up a puck without having to try (really hard)not to show more than she wants to.
The Islanders/Rangers is always a game fierce intensity and brings the best out of both teams. Tonight it was our best that won out, The confident play, the outstanding penalty kill and great play by every one from Kyle Okposo (tonight's second star) to Dwayne Roloson (tonight's first star). The Islanders managed to do something they have not done all year, hold a third period lead and win in regulation.
It was a quick start for the Islanders, who seemed determined to win tonight. It took just 55 seconds for the Islanders to jump on the board as Matt Moulson broke free and beat Henrik Lundqvist to give the Isles the 1-0 lead. The Rangers would turn the tide though picking up play and pressuring the Roloson and the Islanders. Then at 8:50 PA Parenteau backhanded one past Roloson to tie the game at one. The Islanders tied resilient continueing to play aggressively and getting to the front of the net, creating scoring chances. Andy Sutton would end the period with two bone rattling hits on Prospal and Callihan eliciting loud cheers from the Islanders fans in the crowd. no comments