The wait (or reprieve, depending on your angle) is almost over. The team resumes practice today. The Islanders return to action tomorrow night in Colorado at 9:00 p.m.
If you thought the Islanders were in a bad spot... well, they are. But the Avalanche are arguably in a worse spot. Sure, they've got that core of three forwards in Nathan MacKinnon, Matt Duchene, and Gabriel Landeskog, but they're actually not as good as you might think. They also have Tyson Barrie, who actually is very good. But after all these guys, they don't have anything worthwhile.
- As Garth Snow did after the 2013, he went into the season following the semblance of success with nothing more than optimism. It's worked out great. [Newsday]
- Jaroslav Halak has reported to Bridgeport and has joined the Sound Tigers. He doesn't want to comment on anything further. I wouldn't either. Well I would, but I would get fired. Well, he already did actually. I'm talking in circles. [CT Post]
- Halak lost his first game in the AHL in a long shootout to Springfield. He did make 30 saves on 32 shots, though. [CT Post]
- Isles announcer Brendan Burke called into the Point Blank podcast to discuss Jean-Francois Berube, Andrew Ladd, and his feelings about his first year in the NHL. [SNY.tv]
- And finally: you may not know this, but Travis Hamonic is from the Winnipeg/Manitoba area, where the Islanders just so happened to play a game recently.
"Travis only gets to come here once a season. To have our friends & family from across the province come & watch, it's incredible." WATCH: pic.twitter.com/rAdMmmORuW— New York Islanders (@NYIslanders) January 4, 2017
- Last night's NHL scores.
- Your All-Star Game captains have been determined: Sidney Crosby (Metropolitan), Carey Price (Atlantic), Pernell-Karl Subban (Central), and Connor McDavid (Pacific) will represent their respective divisions. [NHL.com]
- The San Jose Sharks are participating in the 50th anniversary of NHL expansion as well - they weren't a part of it, but the team that preceded them in the Bay Area, the California Golden Seals, were. [NHL.com]
- The Sharks also waived Matt Nieto, a solid depth option who can play just about anywhere in the lineup. Odd choice. [Fear the Fin]
- The way Ron Swanson feels when giggles about the government shutting down is the same way I feel whenever something goes horribly wrong for Hockey Canada. The World Juniors, which every Canadian will say is one of their more important traditions, has been drawing very poorly, despite being held in Canada's two most populous cities (Toronto and Montreal). [Canadian Puck Daddy]
- Speaking of the World Juniors: Canada moved on to the finals by beating Sweden. [Sportsnet]
- They will take on the United States, who beat Russia in the shootout thanks to the heroics of Troy Terry. [Sportsnet]
- The Computer Boys strike again! Thomas Drance, formerly of CanucksArmy and Sportsnet, has been hired as VP of Communications and PR for the Florida Panthers. [NHL.com]
- ESPN interviewed a handful of current players about the worst injury they've ever seen someone play through. Pretty neat article, especially considering the source (though, given the nature of the article, no one at ESPN was able to lay their grubby hands on it). [ESPN]
- Not sure I necessarily agree with the content but the sentiment is nice: the Blue Jackets are the conquerors of hockey cynicism - that is, until they reach the playoffs and hockey folks get cynical about their lack of veteran presence. [Puck Daddy]
- The goalie for Army is putting together a Hobey Baker-worthy season. [Ryan Lambert]
- Bruins legend Milt Schmidt has passed away at the age of 98. Thoughts and prayers go out to his loved ones. [Boston Globe]
- John McMullen will be the first inductee into the Devils Ring of Honor. Perhaps it's my young age, but I don't know who that guy is or what he did to earn his Honor, but go him! [CBS]
- Flyers goalie Steve Mason has a new mask that captures the essence of the team. [Broadstreet Hockey]
- Mark Streit has been placed on LTIR to help them become cap compliant. [BSH]
- Perhaps the Isles could take a page out of this book: the Oshawa Generals are out of playoff position and the OHL trade deadline is looming, which will force some decisions. [Durham Region]
- New Kings captain Anze Kopitar's boxcars are down, but it seems to be an issue of bad luck more than anything else. [Jewels from the Crown]
- The Blues will be reviving the jerseys they wore at the Winter Classic for a few more home games this season, including the Isles visit to St. Louis on March 11. [NHL.com]
- The ISS released its Top 31 Prospect rankings. Nolan Patrick remains number one. [ISS]