How did I forget? The Islanders' first trip to Ontario with John Tavares means blanket coverage for the youngster in his return to his home province. Tavares, of course, is the #1 pick the Islanders stole directly from Canada's hands -- the same way the NHL stole the Whalers and North from Canada-- wait...something's not right there...did I carry the 2?
Silliness aside, Ottawa should be fine. It's the first Toronto visit that will bring out renewed self-righteousness from grumpy columnists about how Tavares should be rightfully a Leaf. But the Islanders won't visit Toronto until Nov. 23.
News and Notes
- Over night, Kyle Okposo has become a veteran, wearer of an "A," and a mentor for John Tavares. So much that Tavares fondly recalls being leveled by K.O. at the 2008 WJC. [Newsday]
- Jason Spezza is banged up but will play, Filip Kuba and Jesse Winchester will not. [Ottawa Sun]
- Also out: Ryan Shannon with "a head injury." Remember the concussion Thomas Pock gave him last year? Timely topic, given this discussion at From the Rink. Hope this "head injury" isn't related.
- Bruce "Malkin to the Kings" Garrioch says Tavares will see a lot of Anton Volchenkov and Chris Phillips. Keep your head up. (Wonder how many times in his career "from the faceoff dot to the net" will be used to describe Tavares?)
- Ottawa Citizen predicts an easy one for the Sens, who had a "disaster" in losing to the Isles at home last season.
Long overdue Islanders blogosphere links after the jump...
- Fantastic reflection on a life of being an Islanders fan and the family connection at Islanders 360.
- Chris Botta adds up the real cost of getting Calvin de Haan. I'll have more on that in the game preview later.
Voice of the Islanders Fans is stunned to be looking forward to Islanders hockey and asks: If they moved, what would you do?
- NYI Fan Central is back, sort of, in Twitter-like form.
- View from Section 317 previews, and cites ESPN adding Martin Biron to the Red Wings radar.
- Neat shot from the top of the Coliseum from Islesblogger Mike, who is now the featured Islanders columnist at Bleacher Report. His first piece there is on the youth movement.
- Doug's season preview at Official's Outlook was a doozie. I think he wrote this in between catering to Mrs. Lighthouse and me.
- In his eternal quest to spot the crest wherever it roams, Islanders Outsider's latest Isles logo citing is on a milk truck.
- Angie of On the NYIsles Scene returned with her recap of the opener.
Lighthouse Project posts: 7th Woman on the lease loophole | Nick goes back to square one to remind us just why, exactly, the Lighthouse Project is necessary | Mike Carey at Islanders 360 compares Wang to Walter O'Malley | B.D. Gallof updated his original post questioning Wang's latest moves -- honestly, the complexity and updates are reflective of the complexity of this saga: it's a puzzle of politics and motives, to be sure.
Not Isles-related exactly but: Bryan of The Rivalry reviews ESPN's doc "Kings Ransom," a piece I can't wait to watch. Where were you Aug. 9, 1988? I was outside playing "stepball" with my neighbor friend (a crazy goalie, incidentally), when his mom pulled up in her car and told us, "They traded Gretzky?!" My response to my buddy's non-hockey-fan mom: "That's insane. That would never happen." Ah, the innocent pre-Internet days.
Game preview will be up later, followed by the live game thread tonight. I'll do these link posts as often as possible (or until I find a volunteer to do 'em for me). But you can always add your own bits or interesting links in comments, or as a FanShot. The way I see it: I'm supposed to keep the lights on here, but all the site tools are whatever we -- all of us -- make of them.