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Islanders/NHL News Bits: Cup Final Party Time

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As 2017-18 begins its final lap, some of you voted Josh Bailey goal of the year.

NHL: San Jose Sharks at New York Islanders
I’m about to do this to you.
Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports

The Stanley Cup Final Game 1 kicks off tonight. Here are a few notes (and obligatory Isles links) to get you ready as a new first-time champion begins the final leg of its quest.

Enjoy the game. Our sibling sites on SB Nation for this series are Japers’ Rink (Capitals) and Knights on Ice (Vegas).

Islanders

  • #12 in your program and #1 in your hearts, Josh Bailey gets Islanders Goal of the Year for that crazy through-the-legs marker against San Jose. Way back in October. [Isles]
  • “This is the only time I have ever read Simmons and hoped he was correct” Several updates to the Tavares Encyclopedia of free agency speculation. [LHH]
  • One of the updates is a really long post that clarifies yes, the Maple Leafs actually could use #91. [The Athletic]
  • Another one is a bullet from the Sunday Brooksie roundup, though it’s not...exactly...news: Yes, the team owners arranged the Lou (and Lou-Tavares) discussions. [Post]
  • Chris Osgood sees a little of his own journey in Marc-Andre Fleury, who he admires and has seen win, lose his job, get it back, and enjoy another rebirth. [NHL]

The League

  • Five keys to Golden Knights vs. Capitals, if you like numbered lists. [NHL]
  • George McPhee used to manage the Caps, whose roster is still mostly players he acquired. [SB Nation] Now he’s built the Golden Knights, who are good. [Newsday] That’s made for some awkward times before his longtime friend and former lieutenant, who got the job to replace him as Caps GM. [The Athletic]
  • The bond the Golden Knights developed with the city began from the get go, and was deepened by collective response to mass tragedy in the opening week of the season. [NHL]
  • You’ll be shocked, I’m sure, to hear league owners talk like concussions and CTE are things that are either a) under control or b) Huh? Never heard of it. [TSN]
  • If you want to hear Gary Bettman talk about things, here’s a link to his pre-Final presser (6 p.m. EDT). It’s tradition to mention the Islanders ownership or arena situation there. Will be kind of sad when that’s no longer a thing.
  • Creating a Canadian rivalry is an opportunity for the ECHL. [HEOTP]