It's been a long off-season, full of questions and hopes. In a few short hours, we'll start to answer those questions and, with a little luck, inch closer to realizing those hopes.
But enough of my yakkin'. Here are some links to tide you over until then.
- John Tavares and Josh Bailey talk to Islanders TV about the upcoming season opener against the Devils. [Islanders]
- Cal Clutterbuck skated for the first time yesterday after his leg laceration. Here's photographic evidence. [Islanders Instagram]
- Kevin Schultz asks the question we have all been asking ourselves all summer: was the Islanders' last season a fluke? [Point Blank]
- A neat Michael Grabner profile from the NHLPA's site. Person who got him into hockey? His mom. [NHLPA]
- CBS's Jeff Capellini says the season rests on the shoulders of Evgeni Nabokov. [CBS NY]
- PuckBuddy's Vinny Piccolo talks to Chris Botta about many things Islanders and otherwise including the You Can Play project and, yes, the blog hullabaloo from a few years ago. [PuckBuddies]
While You Were Sleeping:
- That hilarious and way-over-the-top meltdown on the bench is going to cost Patrick Roy $10,000, courtesy of the NHL. When reached for comment, Anaheim coach and target of Roy's wrath Bruce Boudreau said, "Ten Grand?! You know how much Haagen Daas that'll buy?" [SB Nation NHL]
- The Las Vegas Wranglers of the ECHL signed a goalie to a tryout contract last night. Some guy named Ilya Bryzgalov. [SBN]
- Dennis Seidenberg got a 4-year contract extension from the Bruins. [SCOC]
- Jason Pominville signed a five-year extension with Minnesota. [SB Nation NHL]
- Meanwhile, Pominville's old team, the Buffalo Sabres, will be without Ville Leino indefinitely thanks to a cracked rib. Must have injured himself carrying that huge monkey on his back. [Die By The Blade]
- Also, Sabres president Ted Black offered up a vehement defense of the team's already despised third jersey for this season: "If you don't want it, don't buy it" and "If it's a turd sandwich, I'll have to eat it." Are turd sandwiches popular in Buffalo? [Puck Daddy]
- I'm not the only one who can have some fun with the endless, irritating, futile NHL fighting debates. This one uses graphs. [Canucks Army]
Vintage Video: The Islanders host the Maple Leafs in the 1997 home opener at the Coliseum. For tonight, let's hope a few guys play like Claude Lapointe did this time 16 years ago.
PS: Sixteen years!? Goddamn!