The World Cup is not the NHL season, and today’s games are not the World Cup.
As with Cartman’s explanation of appetizers, tonight’s games are like the food you eat before you eat — which itself is before you eat again — to make you more hungry.
Team Europe (assorted countries) and Team North America (assorted youngsters) face off tonight for the tournament’s first day "pre-tournament" contests. It’s in Quebec, and televised on ESPN2, Sportsnet and TVA.
The Isles have a few dogs in that fight:
Earlier in the day -- midday, Eastern time — traditional rivals Sweden and Finland, and Russia and Czechia, will square off.
- Andrew Ladd discusses why he chose the Islanders from among 10 interested teams. [Isles]
- And here’s the Ladd player preview, part of a series at the official site. [Isles]
- Here’s a rundown of World Cup schedule/broadcast info so far. [LHH]
- Here’s me digging through my basement, stumbling upon an artifact from 1994-95, and annoying you with it. [LHH]
- The long wait for arena/eener certainty. [Newsday]
- Always arena/eener talk with this team. [CBS NY]
- Annual awesomeness: Sign your school up for an Islanders visit on School Day. [Isles]
- Here's Christopher Gibson's new mask for the season. Pretty sharp. [Twitter]
- High expectations for Mitchell Vande Sompel's Oshawa Generals in their 80th anniversary season. [Durham]
- Okay, not "elsewhere" just yet: Heads up on some visual pages on SB Nation sites that should help with page load speeds. [Blog Huddle]
- NHL players not worried about getting hurt at World Cup of Hockey [Toronto Star]
- Meanwhile, it's ESPN's re-entry to hockey, especially if you ignore their sparse college coverage. (You know they'll treat it bigger than the Stanley Cup because they happen to be airing it.) [AP]
- George Parros is the latest former NHL player to join the Department of Player Safety. [NHL] ... which prompted Staple to make a Suicide Squad connection. [@StapeNewsday]
- Why your team sucks, Canadiens edition. (Oh, the fun Leafs fans are having with this one.) [PPP]
- The bizarre free agency saga of Kris Russell [ProHockeyTalk]
- As for the Leafs, after tanking they are now starting to get serious, which means fans "have to deal with the potential upside of yesteryear not being realized." [PPP]
- Devin Setoguchi battled alcoholism as his career cratered. [THN]
- Down Goes Brown runs down five other classic hockey video games. [THN]