HNLI podcast went well. Donnie (Whale4ever) from Litter Box Cats was great -- the excitement for the Panthers' play lately was clear in his voice, which I'd "heard" only in typed words before. He talked up Jagr II (Frolik) and Booth, and acknowledged up-and-down Nathan Horton has been "up" lately. I'm just glad neither Luongo or Jokinen is part of this revival.
I think there were audio issues with the online feed, but a clear archive of the hour is available here (episode 16).
Three more things I wish I'd said but didn't:
- K.C. doesn't worry me because a) AEG needs a K.C. hockey game -- with any team -- every preseason before they get a team there; b) it's a necessary part of the PR dance before this gets done -- essentially, if the Isles ever move, I don't see K.C. being the destination.
Didn't think it would happen anyway, but I remain very glad the Isles didn't grab McCabe's contract over the summer. Too much money, too much age, not enough relevance to the Islanders' future.
- You could argue that, long-term hockey-wise, Hedman might be just as important as Tavares. (Given projection uncertainty, picture getting Pronger vs. getting Toews or Kane). But with all of the Islanders' off-ice issues (building, attendance, media attention, fan patience), it's so much more important for them to get a flashy offensive star who makes an impact now, rather than a stalwart D-man who will need several years to reach his Pronger Phase and becomes a franchise foundation.
Florida hot-hot Panthers (23-17-8, 8th/E) at New York Islanders (14-29-5, 30th)
7 p.m. EST | Nassau [gloriously unsponsored] Vets. Memorial Coliseum | MSG+
Unfortunately, I won't be around for the thread tonight. A good friend's birthday bash calls. But as always, you're welcome and encouraged to drop in with comments, celebrations, and completly irrelevant bits of humor and lunacy. Or hit the Panthers game thread over at Litter Box Cats.