Editor's Note: Bill Strong checks in with another retro-live blog to cheer you on a summer day. This time, the focus is the slaughter of the Red Wings (the Wings haven't scored on the Isles in two years, don'tcha know). For reference, here's the Lighthouse Hockey recap of the day. Read on for Bill's live trip, from sweaters to a beloved former Islander sighting.
We are back with another hot-off-my-fingers edition of the RETRO LIVE BLOG.
Thanks for the response to last week's RLB of the Shawn Bates penalty shot game. This time, we decided to do something of the More Recent Variety and go all the way back to January of this year when the Islanders beat the Detroit Red Wings 6-0.
The reason for this choice was simple: this is my feel-good present to you and Chelsea Clinton on her wedding weekend. This off-season has been an exercise in head-scratching, eye bleeding, and bewilderment so I thought we all should just sit back and enjoy the most thorough Islanders ass-whipping of recent memory.
So here we are. It's January 12, 2010. I recorded this off the Center Ice package.
We open with Deb Placey and the brightest yellow sweater known to man telling us that Brendan Witt has been placed on the IR with a lower-body injury. This was the beginning of the Bridgeport Banishment, I believe.
Quick shot of The Franchise mining for booger nuggets...and a clip from that nasty elbow from Jovo that Tavares ate the previous Saturday in Phoenix.
Isles begin with Okposo and Bailey centered by Park...
:25 Sutton blasts one from the point on a pass from Park. Jimmy Howard makes a nice glove save. It will be one of his few saves tonight.
I'm setting the over/under on Howie's Ranger references at 3 tonight. Was there anything worse than that NHL Network special about him where most of it was talking about the Ranger$ and that stupid, stupid, stupid, "Matteau! Matteau! Matteau!" line from 1994? It filled me with rage, rage, rage!
18:49 Moulson dumps it in the Detroit end...Streit pinches and tosses it into the slot. Mouslon picks up the change and redirects it past Howard for his 17th of the season. Assists to Streit and Nielsen.
17:00 The cameras find Red Wings coach Mike Babcock. Babcock always looks pissed and confused at the same time; like he can't believe his kids stole money from his wallet or something.
13:28 Howie says "you'd think the Nets are still playing here the way the puck has been bouncing around this year." Didn't the Nets leave for New Jersey in the seventies?!? If you're scoring at home, that is Old Guy Reference #1!
Stoppage in play: Knicks promo #1! I love MSG so frickin' much.
9:30ish The Isles are meeting the Red Wings in the neutral zone. Tremendous defensive play tonight so far...
7:44 Dwayne Roloson has just updated his Facebook status to Not Busy.
Back from the break, Nicklas Lidstrom is highlighted. He has probably been my favorite non-Islander player for years. Tape is shown of Nick scoring his 1000 point and his 6 Norris Trophies are mentioned. Of course, not even being the first European captain of a Stanley Cup winning team can eclipse the sheer personal and professional satisfaction of knowing that THE Neil Smith has been eating lunch on the fact that he "discovered and drafted" Lidstrom even though Ken Holland and Jimmy Devellano ran the Red Wings when he was drafted 53rd overall in 1989.
5:57 The Jaff calls this "an excellent first period so far for the Islanders." Yup, the man is just too negative. Get him outta there!
4:39 Roloson has to hang up the phone to make a save. Not heard: his wife going, "Dwayne? Dwayne? Still there?"
4:17 Bruno steps up and feeds Schremp for a little one-timer against the grain for the Islanders' second goal. Frans fore-checked an unnamed Wing into flopping down and giving the puck away. Rob Schremp hockey!! Isles 2, Detroit zeee-ro.
2:52 Howie bitches about "the NHL's version of .500." Old Guy Whining #1!
Period ends 2-0 Islanders. Roloson has made 7 saves. One of them was a quality chance by Rafalski on a snapper from the circle. He is now free to call his wife back.
19:07 Howie hits Rangers Reference #1 by saying that Jimmy Howard wears #35 because his favorite player growing up was Mike Richter. This is already tiresome.
16:47 I am wondering if there has even been a penalty called in the game just as Howie says that there hasn't. And with that I begrudgingly say, "Let's go Mets."
14:50 Datsyuk turns it over to Matt Moulson who shoots quickly. Howard makes an alert stop.
13:18 Hands of Stone Sean Bergenheim rags it J-Blake-style through the Red Wings zone and sizzles one toward Howard while two teammates are in better scoring positions. Can't say I will miss that.
Back from the break, Deb Deb has a special guest. No, it isn't that kid from Entourage (nobody mentions him being on "Unhappily Ever After" with the Mr. Floppy puppet) it's KENNY EFFING JONSSON, who is visiting Long Island!
Kenny talks about retiring from playing in Sweden. He didn't have the motivation to continue with his career. He misses the games but doesn't miss the practices. Totally one of the most under-rated Islander players ever.
11:53 After a flurry by Trent Hunter, Brad Stuart flubs it while the teams are changing right in front of Robbie Schremp; who steals the puck and goes forehand-backhand faster than Jonathan Toews for his second of the game. Babcock--still pissed about his kids talking money from his wallet, gives Howard the hook and former Islander Chris Osgood replaces him in the Red Wing net. 3-0 Islanders on Schremp's second of the game.
8:46 Kyle Okposo hits the post. Can't wait for those to start going into the net.
7:50ish Jaffe says the Isles have been "just awesome" in this game. Should I send a copy of this DVD over to Mr. McMahon--I mean, Mr. Wang?
5:35 Howie mentions the no-penalty thing again and wouldn't you know it, Kirk Maltby is whistled for a slash. Isles have the first power play.
3:40 Josh Bailey, on the half-wall, finds Mark Streit by himself cross-ice and Streiter puts it home for a 4-0 Islander lead. Streit had about five attempts on this power play. Not shown: Dwayne Roloson buying a Kindle off amazon.com on his smartphone.
3:00 Bergie gets called for a hook on Justin Abderkader. He did it. Two minutes to feel shame.
1:27 Lady Byng Datsyuk is called for hoofin' Kyle Okposo; who had been skating around causing trouble on the PK like he needed help putting out a fire. This is why we love Kyle Okposo! (Hoofing=Interference, btw.)
Some dude off the faceoff tosses an octopus on the ice. Billy calls him a "dumb fan". The poor Ice Girls are not going anywhere near the thing. Why throw an octopus on the ice when your team is getting an ass-waxing, 4-0? This sends Howie into an explanation about the octopus' significance. What a gross tradition. Also, how do you get that thing into the rink? You can't even sneak a bottle of water into the arena. How do you smuggle a dead octopus into the rink and not get caught when there is dead octopus stank coming out of your pants? Please, Detroit. Just stop.
End of 2, Islanders are up 4-0.
Rick DiPietro is shown walking in the hallway outside of the locker room and out onto the ice. He is able to do this without any falsified accident reports or aggravation of old hip injuries. Win!
18:46 Isles lead in shots 27-9.
By the way--Henrik Zetterberg is actually playing in this game. He just hasn't done much like the rest of his teammates. The Islanders defense has been that good. Jack Hillen has been so fast out there that he is covering for mistakes he or his teammates have made. Just a tremendous game to watch.
9:22 Hard work pays off as Kyle pots one to give our boys the 5-zip lead. Tavares is in front of the net as Bails and Okposo switch. Kyle rips a wrister past Osgood. Bailey and Freddie Fredder The Fredder Man V4.0 get the assists.
8:58 Roloson's stick breaks and he makes a safe on the doorstep with half a stick. Isles whisted for Too Many Men on the play.
6:00 We begin the "Let's get Schremp a hat trick" deal from the bench...
Coming back from break, I am wondering if I edited out all of the "please watch the Knicks" come-ons that Howie reads. Maybe just not seeing the commericals every break made it less-annoying. Not sure.
2:52 Billy Jaffe tears down the effort: "This is the best and most complete game the Islanders have played under Scott Gordon. Everything has been so dead-on right in this game." If only the sun would come up for this poor guy, huh?
55.4 Andy Sutton gets called for being large and in the way of some Red Wings player. The Isles kill off the penalty and win the game, 6-0.
Now begins everybody's favorite party game, Who Gets to Talk to Deb? My first guess is Schremp.
Third star: Schremp (what?)
Second star: Mark Streit
First star: Dwayne Roloson (recount!)
He then gives the standard hockey plyer post game interview. Surprise, this is the best game they've played all year. There's a few of those annoying glass-slappers behind Roloson. Never understood that one. It's not like they're going to trun around and say hello. They are not fish, either.
Overall, a fantastic game to re-watch. That is why I recorded it. Makes you feel good to go and experience the one-sided stomping in the summer time when nothing is happening and it's too damn hot to care.
We'll be back with another Retro Live Blog soon. The Wayback Machine may even go back to 1979 sometime this summer!
Thanks for reading. Comments and suggestions are welcome.