Howie Rose said despite many precedents, this one may have been the most frustrating loss of the year. I'm guessing that had something to do with the powerplay continuing to be miserable. And with giving up a shorthanded goal right off the defensive zone faceoff two minutes after tying the game. And taking a lead going into the third at home but failing to retain a point. And a collection of Murphy's Law bounces laying the decisve smack down on what sounded like (in game thread comments) an otherwise strong effort. Kind of glad I missed it then. (Though a bunch of Nordique fans did not...).
Everyone got their frustration out in the game thread, but here is our standard game links, notes and highlights post for posterity's sake... [Note: WebBard's weekly prospect/Bridgeport update is up in the next thread]
- Hey, finally a PP goal! (Okay it was 6-on-4 in desperation mode, but hey, beggars can't...)
- Or, to quote ogam5: "A POWERPLAY GOAL BY COMEAU! ..that takes care of TWO monkeys!" Seriously, even if neither were indicative of progress, it doesn't hurt to have those droughts end on paper at least.
- So Johnny Oduya scores his first two goals of the season 1:18 apart in the third to both tie and take the lead for Atlanta? So it's going like that then, is it? Yes, it's going like that.
- Shots 17-6 for Atlanta in the second period. WTH happened there? Isles were outshot 25-18 at 5-on-5 in the full game.
Rob Schremp Hockey: In his last six games he has 4 goals, 3 assists, 7 points, +5, in just roughly 15 minutes per game. Obviously only one of those points (an assist last night) came via the powerplay.
- Tavares: It has always been a complaint, or a concern, or a part of the young center's game that needs work, but John Tavares' defensive zone play is starting to worry me in a plateau sort of way. Some of those (out of context highlights) just looked familiar. This work takes time, but I hope we're not regressing in that department.
- Fun to hear JT got in a small star v. small star "fight" though. Frustration boileth over, so comes a slash and tussle with Alexander Burmistov, who must've taunted Tavares with "My team's future is more certain than yours."
- DiPietro, that faceoff goal: I've got nothing other than that can't happen, period. (Schremp: "Never seen anything like that in my life.")
- Radek Martinek (arm, Chara'd) missed the game and Mark Eaton left early with a groin strain, so expect an emergency recall, says Strang.
- Rhett Time? Rhett Rakhshani was scratched from Bridgeport's afternoon game today...hmm...
- About those Quebec fans... [Newsday, temporarily not $5 please] [Also: NY Post -- ohh, Isles coverage!]
- It's a shame that all the Quebec fan invasion thing does is highlight how no one knows what's up with this team after 2015, and we have no hint of plans. [NYIFYI gamer]
- Newsday recap.
- Hornick's "Skinny" [official site]
- Bruce "Malkin to the Kings" says Garth Snow is shopping for a veteran winger. Even if true, the challenge here, as Malkin to the Kings makes clear, remains: "There aren't many veteran forwards on the trade market." I feel like this has been said before somewhere...
Finally, an interesting clarification from Arthur Staple on his column about Quebec:
I made a mistake in one of the final sentences. I wrote that Charles Wang "won't spend more on established stars until he has a deal with Hempstead to build his dream development."
This isn't entirely true, based on offers made in July to Paul Martin and Dan Hamhuis, among others over the last few seasons; what I meant to say was that Wang won't continue to lose millions and will keep overall costs down until he has a deal for the future.
Most national reporters gloss over this and, unlike Staple, don't bother to clarify. Of course it hardly absolves the Islanders or Wang for the rut this team is in. But like I always say, there are plenty of reasons to legitimately criticize this team/franchise without resorting to incorrect ones.