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Islanders Gameday News: Yes, it's finally gameday

Also: Mathew Barzal is still good.

Hockey smiles.
Hockey smiles.
Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

After a long, long wait during which I got a lot of laundry sorted (Bossy before Nielsen, Nystrom before Trottier), the New York Islanders are finally back in action tonight in Ottawa. Party on, Trots. Leave your FIG picks here.

Islanders Reads
  • Five days since their last game, the Isles need to avoid the post-layoff rust that's plagued them this season. [Newsday]
  • The latest power rankings are out, and the Isles are doing okay. But the media are really looking forward to a Battle of NY playoff series. [LHH]
  • Another day, another dose of hype for Mathew Barzal. You know how it is. [SI Kids]
  • Thirty-three years ago last night, the Isles began one of the most dominant regular season streaks in history. [NYI Skinny]
  • It is time for Jivin' with Jiggs. [Islanders Insight]
  • Down on the farm, they turn to Rowe and Quine for power play help. [CT Post]
Beyond Barzal
  • Tonight's opponent, the Senators were in Newark last night where they let up FIVE first-period goals. They lost. [NHL]
  • Which are the best teams at 3-on-3? Not the Isles. (Though note: A pretty good team starts with two D and one F, so it's not just that...) [TSN]
  • Former Whalers owner Howard Baldwin reminisces about Dave Keon and what a fool Harold Ballard was. [Slapshot Diaries]
  • The Rangers signed yippee yippee Paille. [Blueshirt Banter]
  • That won't address Dan Girardi, who is no better than "a Segway with a broom attached." [Blueshirt Banter]
  • Andrew Ference needs hip surgery and is done for the season, which is kind of like a "Brian Strait is out" kind of news for Oilers fans. [Copper & Blue]
  • Richard Panik oversleeps, is scratched by the Hawks, maybe has to run the Coliseum stairs. [Chicago Trib]
  • Good timing for the Hawks to acquire Jiri Sekac for shrapnel, then. [Second City]
  • The Hawks are good enough that they were able to lure a KHL free agent with less money in a cap league. [SCH]
  • Aaron Ekblad likes seashells a whole lot, maybe. [SB Nation]
  • The Penguins finally beat their cross-state rivals last night, but we'll always support a reverie about the previous eight losses to the Flyers. [BSH]
  • Marc Bergevin says he had a reason for the John Scott trade, but "can't really tell," you know? [Sporting News]
  • Say, how many goals will Scott score in the, ahem, mid-season classic? [SB Nation Blog Council]
  • The AHL All-Star Classic will reach 110 million homes. In theory. [AHL]