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Monday Mo(u)rning Poll: Westward, oh

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A seven-game losing streak brings you "people are talking" speculation on the coach's job from the local Speculator-in-Chief, followed by the inevitable refutation from one source to the local beatwriter [sub.]. No doubt the cycle continues until a couple of wins pauses it ... until next time. Yet it's hard for me to picture Garth Snow going this far into his rebuild without riding this rut out, so forgive me if the coaching position is not my daily topic. When they've played 10 home games (Dec. 2 vs. the Rangers), it will be interesting to see how things look.

Of immediate concern is whether the Islanders can capture their improved team play in the Flyers game (loss #7 on this streak) and apply it on a tough West Coast swing, and that is ... well it's an open question, isn't it? See for yourself: Wednesday's game vs. the Ducks is on NHL Network (U.S. and Canada) in addition to MSG+, so diaspora plan your viewing accordingly (and, alternatively, let us know if you'll be at any of the California games -- no, not that California Games, although that's cool too).

Our weekly round-up and temperature check around here is at the bottom of this post and the left margin of the homepage. The "fan confidence" score was 46 last week, so pile a few more losses on and again ask the question: "How confident are you in the Islanders' playoff chances?"

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About Last Night

Many regulars know there is another love in my life, another team. Either to double or to mitigate my fan misery, my father reared me on both. I've always explained that the reason these two loves in separate towns could co-exist without an ugly fight is that they have rarely in my lifetime competed for the same spoils. Seems one team is always up while the other is down. Sure enough, this month one outfit is on a seven-game losing streak while the other is on a seven-game winning streak -- extended last night by victimizing the Rangers at the Garden. Fan bigamy: Double the opportunity to torture the Rangers.