Last night was a clinic in how well-coached teams play. As an attendant of the game, it wasn’t even terribly exciting beyond the goals. It just felt like business as usual, and I don’t think I’ve ever felt that way about my team as a 24 year-old Islanders fan. It’s lovely, I must say, to have that kind of confidence. And it even looked like they were trying to conserve energy for the important game the following night, which, with a 3-goal lead, isn’t a bad thing.
- Congrats to Michael Dal Colle on his first NHL goal; may there be many more to come. [Newsday]
- Anders Lee and Chris Kreider are on similar contracts and the Isles and Rangers have interesting decisions to make - the Islanders this summer, and the Blueshirts next summer. [The Athletic]
- Barry Trotz admitted the first game against the Caps was emotional; he hadn’t seen his former players since leaving, and he got his Stanley Cup ring. But this game, he said, is like any other game. [Newsday]
- NEW! Trotz left an imprint on the Capitals that won’t be forgotten and vice versa. [The Athletic]
“There’s nothing lingering. My heart’s full. I don’t have any beefs. If you’re asking for beefs, I have zero. My heart is full with all the good stuff, the good memories.”
- NEW! But make no mistake: Trotz is an Islander now, and he has them thinking about big things in the future:
“That was just the mission. Let’s just make sure we’re a rising team. How far can we take it day by day? We will look back at the end of the year and see how far we can take it, see if we can raise the bar even higher all the time.”
- But Alexander Ovechkin is still gonna be happy to see one of his best friends in Trotz. [Washington Post]
- NEW! Lou Lamoriello chats with Mike Vaccarro of the Post about the emotions of hockey and also taking care of business.
“Culture,” he says, shaking his head, “is an overused word. All it is, is doing all the little things the right way.”
- Arthur Staple joined the Two-Man Advantage with Scott Burnside and Pierre LeBrun to discuss the Islanders’ surprising surge toward the playoffs under Barry Trotz. He’s a little quiet compared to the hosts, or at the very least Burnside. [SoundCloud]
- NEW! Staple assesses the Islanders goalie situation and whether we maybe could still see Ilya Sorokin on these shores as early as next season.
- NEW! Lebrun’s notebook column mentions on where the team and Anders Lee are on a contract extension.
The expectation is that both sides will meet again in two to three weeks to continue to the talks, which span all the way back to last summer.
I suspect the reason there hasn’t been a deal yet is the team’s reservations of going the maximum eight years with the 28-year-old forward.
Still, I get the sense both sides are earnest in their desire to get this done.
- The Hurricanes have acquired old pal Nino Niederreiter from the Wild in exchange for Victor Rask. [Canes Country | Hockey Wilderness]
- The ‘Canes may not be done, either. GM Don Waddell still wants to add another top-six forward as their owner pushes for them to make the playoffs, according to Darren Dreger. [Nichols on Hockey]
- The Lightning, of course, are a powerhouse. But what makes them so dangerous is they don’t really have a weakness. They’re elite at even-strength, and elite in the special teams department. [TSN]
- This is pretty neat: the NHL and SAP developed the Coaching Insights App that allows coaches on the bench to access live stats from the game they’re in the midst of coaching on their fancy iPads. No more “running around the corner... and printing.” [ESPN]
- Twitter user(s) and twins @EvolvingWild explain The Process as far as calculating their WAR model in Part 2. [Hockey Graphs]