The New York Islanders return to home ice tonight for a brief refresher before heading on the road through the New Year. Catch up on opponent news at Capitals blog Japers' Rink.
- Jaroslav Halak was activated from IR [NHL] and
mightwill start tonight. [Newsday]
- But still though: Don't Panic, Part 2: It’s STILL not really time to worry about the goaltending. | Islander Analytics
- If you refuse that advice, know that many of your dream replacement backup options are, well, having their own backup-ish numbers. [LHH]
- The Isles will finish every month of 2014 with a (NHL-style) ".500" or better record. [The Skinny]
- JP's weekly index ranking the NHL teams by a collection of team stats. [LHH FanPost]
- FIG Picks: Leave your First Islanders Goal picks for tonight right this way. Don't pick Poulin.
Beyond the Island
- In the latest edition of the now-eight-season-long series, "Lou Lamoriello Has Turned Into A Crazy Old Man," the Devils emperor says "co" coaches Scott Stevens and Adam Oates will not be allowed to speak to media because I RUN THIS SHIP DAMMIT. [Fire & Ice]
- Speaking of which, our industry source tells us Kevin Smith is finally doing Clerks 3 and it revolves around the Devils coaching ensemble. [LHH Zeitgeist]
- COUNTRY IN CRISIS: Empty seats at WJC in Montreal. [Yahoo]
- Speaking of which, the U.S. routed somebody and remained undefeated but their big match comes Wednesday. [SB Nation]
- Russia and Sweden face off today, by the way. That's two Islanders goalie draft picks for the price of one.
- Mike Ribeiro talks about tackling the alcohol and drug demons that got him into trouble. [Canoe] (Aside: Good story, but no amount of hardship excuses diving and faking injury, so he remains in my Hockey Book of Tools.)
- Today's episode of "Dion Phaneuf is as Dumb as He Looks." [SB Nation]
- In one odd promo on Sunday Night Football, Pierre McGuire successfully captures the year that was Male Hockey Bloggers Creeping on Women. [SB Nation] (Note: That's not to imply McGuire has done such. But if someone were to play those characters on TV...)