Islanders Gameday Bits: Fan Appreciation Day

Ready to rumble? - Bruce Bennett

Getting ready to close the regular season home schedule out with, hopefully, a bang.

The Islanders close out their home schedule tonight against the Panthers, and my, has it been a surprising turnaround given how they began the season on home ice. Hopefully tonight at the Coliseum serves as a party, a proper send-off for the team as they go on their season-ending five-game trip that leads to, we all hope, a return to home ice for some playoff games.

Elsewhere:

The Oilers fired GM Steve Tambellini and replaced him with Craig MacTavish. Kevin Lowe had some curious statements, including: "Half the general managers in the league would trade their roster for our roster right now." He also said there's one other guy working in the game who's won more Stanley Cups than him, ergo he knows about winning. Copper & Blue notes some of the critical media questions Lowe faced, and worries that Lowe looms as a shadow over the qualified MacTavish [video of the presser there too].

Down Goes Brown riffs on the Oilers GM hiring process.

Ben Hanowski, part of the Jarome Iginla trade, scored his first NHL goal for Calgary.

Terrible about the tragedy in Boston yesterday. Peter Laviolette is among many relieved to hear their family members are okay. Obviously that's not true for everyone. Just a sad, depressing day. Cheers to everyone who dropped a line in the SCOC threads last night.

Network note: SB Nation blogs will soon have edible, I mean editable comments. So you'll have 90 seconds to fix what you were too lazy to proof before! :P

Check back later for more on tonight's game.

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