The Islanders have already faced two teams twice in this young season, losing the second legs to Tampa Bay and Florida. That was part of a wasted trip to the Retiree State, which was followed by an initial loss at home two nights ago to the Penguins. Tonight represents their third two-fer of the month.
But what the Islanders didn't have then which they will have now: The Jurcina Anomaly. Yes, Milan Jurcina and his amusingly strong "when in the lineup" record from last year is back, and Staple reports Mike Mottau sits in his stead.
I don't think any of us who claim the 3-0 loss was a better performance than the Florida losses is trying to blow smoke or spike the kool-aid. Rather, just trying to objectively analyze the sport of hockey, in which single-game scores are not always good reflections of on-going trends, and on-going trends don't necessarily mean much until more games are in the hopper.
That doesn't mean the Islanders have turned anything around; it doesn't mean they can't stink it up tonight. It means that 3-0 result at home wasn't a continuation of their failings on the road trip. Check Chris's scoring chance roundup for another look.
On that note, all will probably appreciate this mentality from the budding star in #91:
"We talk about getting to that next level, being a better team and getting into the playoffs. It’s great that we played well (Tuesday). It’s all positive, but at the same time, good teams find ways to win and that’s what Pittsburgh did against us. They may not have played their best game or been as sharp as they would have liked, but they still found a way to win."
All aboard then. Tonight's a chance to get back to .500, to make October a winnable month, to roll into the Decades Night Saturday and go into November feeling right.
Nabokov Starts Again, Mottau Out, Everyone's Good
"Mike (Mottau) has played extremely well for us. As have all our D. We want to get Jurcina back in."
Of course, while many observers don't think that's quite true, there is this from Eric Hornick:
The Isles have allowed only 17 goals in seven games (2.43 goals per game). It's the fewest goals that the Isles have allowed in the first seven games since the lockout and the 9th time in their history that they have allowed 17 or fewer over the first seven. The club record for Fewest Goals Allowed, First 7 Games is 14, set in 1976-77.
Interesting that Evgeni Nabokov, who played well in the loss the other night, goes again and faces the same team twice in three nights.
Other Hockey/Isles Links
- Staple: Islanders live chat coming this Thursday
- Post: Islanders will trade whiskers for goals
- Official site: New York Islanders not discouraged
- This is not the industry you were looking for: Former Sound Tiger Art Bidlevski Line Brawl at Juniors
- The more you know: How to Pronounce PA Parenteau [YouTube]
- Location-gazing: Red Light " Posts Bettman sees Isles staying in New York " [SI.com]
- 2011 Draft: Strome selected to OHL Super Series ... Ottawa sends Mika Imadinnerjacket back to Sweden. Decision time looms for 2011 picks playing in NHL
- The 2009 Draft: This is funny, and it's funny that anyone's even going this far.
- "Shot quality" rant? With Apologies to The Weakerthans...I hate "Shot Quality" - Arctic Ice Hockey
- Japers': Alex Ovechkin and the Capitals' Power Play: Occupy the Slot - Japers' Rink
- There is only one Backhand of Judgment: The 3 different types of shootout shooters | Backhand Shelf | Blogs | theScore.com
- Edmonton gets an arena deal, but ... they're still $1 million short.
- Kerry Fraser on assist-dealing.
Let's go Islanders. Because we are in need of some going.