At some point there would be a "potential final game at Nassau Coliseum" for the Islanders. That game is today. A win sends the series back to Washington. A loss send the Islanders to Brooklyn.
No amount of words can put the gravity of today's game into proper perspective. This is easily one of the most important games in Islanders franchise history. Tensions are high, nerves are raw, eyes are wet. Everybody just wants a win, probably more than we've ever wanted a win before. Just one. Make it happen, Islanders.
- The Islanders are clearly aware of the situation: Put up or close up [Newsday] | Consequences are massive [NY Post] | Last Hurrah? [NY Times] | Keep the doors open [NY Daily News] | Emotions will play a role. [NHL.com] | Do or Die [Islanders]
- Calvin deHaan is most likely out and Ryan Pulock could see his first NHL game in his place. [NHL.com]
- Unpopular opinions: Be nice. | The best revenge is scoring goals.
- The Capitals know closing the deal won't be easy. [CSN Washington] | The series has seen a ton of hits and injuries, but you still need to score goals. [CSN Washington]
- The Caps are a different team at home than they are on the road. [Japers]
- There's a lot of competition for air time this weekend in New York with the Mets and Yankees also playing each other. [SILive]
- The commissioners of the various leagues held court for the AP, and when as asked about the Islanders possibly returning to Nassau County in the near future, Gary Bettman was a wet blanket. [LHH | Full story in Newsdayand WSJ]
- Devils beatwriter Tom Guilitti says the Islanders won't be the same in Brooklyn. [North Jersey]
- And Howie Rose is straight up pissed off. [NY Post]
- A Caps fan celebrates the Coliseum [Capitals Outsider] and Dave Hodge gives the building a Thumbs Up.
- The Coliseum closing is a death in the family. [Medium]
- Inside Kyle Okposo's eye injury and his road back. [SI.com]
News about teams we don't care about today
- Now, they wait. [BSB]
- Devan Dubnyk, Carey Price and Pekka Rinne are your Vezina Trophy finalists. Let's hope this doesn't motivate Braden Holtby. [NHL.com]
- Peter Chiarelli is the new GM of the Oilers, with a shuffling aside of the Old Oilers Boys Network. [C&B]
- The code words of NHL injuries serve no one. [NY Post]
- The Leafs and Canucks have a rivalry? Who knew? [PPP]
This worked in Game 3. The Coliseum needs to be louder than it's ever been today.