The Islanders gave up only four shots in the first period last night, yet two of them went in.
They finally kept a team — okay, it was just the Sabres — to under 35 shots, under 30 even, under 25, but were down 3-0. They came back to tie it on the power play late in the third...and then promptly gave up the winner with another awful defensive display by every player on the ice.
(Yes, Dennis Seidenberg was again the prominent culprit, but that’s per usual; the real damning sign is that everyone else played that sequence poorly too.)
- About last night: You gotta be kidding me. [LHH | Newsday | NHL | Isles | 3 Takeaways | Islanders Insight | DBTB | Buffalo News focuses on Sabres being bad and building being half full]
- Like apparently every current Islander, former Islander Kyle Okposo would love to play in the Coliseum next season. [Newsday]
- All kinds of terrible irony in the Islanders seeking to reduce shots against, and Jaroslav Halak noting that it’s better for the goalie to face many shots, but not too many, and then he gives up two early. [Isles]
- People talk about how awesome Mathew Barzal is. [Score]
- With John Tonelli reappearing recently, Newsday asks, which number would you retire?
- The trade deadline is at the end of the month, so Dan pulled together a fake package of basically real Garth Snow quotes you can expect to hear hear and there. [LHH Zeitgeist]
- Meanwhile, Chris Botta puts the screws to Snow while warning that the ownership surely has his back. [SNY]
- Mitch Vande Sompel is officially “week to week” while Bridgeport has recalled The Better* Gaudreau from Worcester. [CT Post | Soundin’ Off] *Maloney/Lindros reference
- WHL Portland scored eight goals and Kieffer Bellows had two of them. [Winterhawks]
- And David Quenneville keeps scoring for Medicine Hat.
- Isles road blog: On the fuzzy MSG mic, and Ryan Pulock losing his face shield. [Isles]
- A Q&A with Arthur Staple on the state of the Isles. [Double G Sports]
#Isles gave up 29 5v5 attempts. Seidenberg was on for 14 of them. Even with B2B, surprised they don't cut down to 4 or 5 D once they tie it. Gotta carry the desperation through the tying goal, not go back to the usual rotation. Ah well. Easy for me to say on the couch here.— Arthur Staple (@StapeAthletic) February 9, 2018
Tavares: “They capitalized more on their opportunities than we did on ours. It’s just unfortunate because overall it was a pretty decent hockey game. We came back and had big goals, but just blown coverage in our own zone and it cost us.”#NYIvsBUF pic.twitter.com/kGOxZoHQOl— New York Islanders (@NYIslanders) February 9, 2018
But some humor, after noted The League Is Against Us conspiracy theorist Robin Lehner didn’t close off the post on Anders Lee’s tying goal:
Robin Lehner gonna blame that one on chemtrails?— Arthur Staple (@StapeAthletic) February 9, 2018
Last night’s scores include the Devils losing in regulation to the Flames (who visit Barclays on Sunday), but also the Flyers picking up two more points, adding extra sting to the Islanders somehow losing to the Sabres.
- The signs have been all over, but yesterday the Rangers came out and said it: We’re not good enough, a fire sale is imminent. [Post | Times | NHL]
- That means Alain Vigneault’s status is TBD. [Post]
- Maybe the Canadiens could learn something from the Smurfs’ rebuild proclamation. [TSN]
- The Flames, like basically every team, say they aren’t giving up top picks for rentals. [Score]
- A Japanese prodigy eyes a path to the NHL. [Times]