Tonight is one of those big measuring stick type games. The Islanders’ record is among the league’s best, right up there with the Bruins and the Capitals. Beating Boston would be a nice feather in the cap to prove they belong.
- Let’s (let the Islanders site) preview the damn thing, shall we? (Also, it’s on national TV, NBCSN, so you’re aware.)
- The Islanders are looking forward to this game. Emphasis on “forward” because they certainly don’t want to look back to the Predators game. [Newsday]
- Big news from yesterday: the Islanders will retire John Tonelli’s no. 27 and Butch Goring’s no. 91 in February. Anders Lee is still allowed to wear no. 27. [LHH | IslesBlog | Islanders | Newsday | TSN]
- LISTEN: The two men spoke about the great recognition they’re receiving on a conference call with reporters. [Islanders]
- They are “honored” and “humbled,” in their words, about the achievement. [Islanders]
Man, Butchie was so happy yesterday:
Today has become one of the best days of my https://t.co/2o3VDvTIbI have my number retired is beyond expression and belief.The response from fans and friends as well as family is overwhelming.February can not come fast enough.Thanks to everyone for the kind words— Butch Goring (@91Butch) December 18, 2019
Barry Trotz was thrilled for them, too:
"Well done by the organization and well-deserved by the two gentlemen. It'll be an honor to see them get their jerseys raised." -Barry Trotz discusses the retirement of #Isles alumni John Tonelli's #27 and Butch Goring's #91. pic.twitter.com/E5wENUHVPW— New York Islanders (@NYIslanders) December 18, 2019
- Some more big news: in Elliotte Friedman’s 31 Thoughts, he mentions whispers of Ilya Sorokin trying to force a trade from the Islanders. Also, that the Islanders may have been looking for more of a “hockey trade” with the Devils for Taylor Hall.
- The Islanders are giving Josh Ho-Sang a “clean slate” now that he’s back but “it’s in his hands” to work his way into the NHL. Can you imagine, after all this, he becomes an NHL regular with the Isles? That would be objectively funny, but also awesome. [Yahoo]
- He’s saying all the right things so far—sitting home not-traded after making his request was probably a humbling experience. By talent, he should be in the NHL, so I’m hoping he pulls it off. [CT Insider]
- PODCAST: The latest episode of My Favorite Islanders Game. This is such a cool idea. [LHH]
- MORE PODCAST: The Isles Buzz podcast sums up all the big stories from yesterday: Ho-Sang, the jersey retirements, yes. [LHH]
- Carey said he had writer’s block and turned to Twitter for ideas, but he turned in an excellent piece of work about Barry Trotz’s Capitals vs. Barry Trotz’s Islanders, among other things. [LHH]
- What’s been going on down in Bridgeport these days? [Bridgeport Report]
- Well, for one, they hosted and beat the Syracuse Crunch 3-2. Andrew Ladd scored twice and Kieffer Bellows scored for the fourth straight game. [Soundin’ Off pregame | CT Post postgame | Sound Tigers postgame]
Last night’s NHL scores include the Devils beating the Ducks 3-1 on home ice and the Avalanche continuing to roll, topping the Blackhawks 4-1.
- Now that Ilya Kovalchuk is officially off the Kings, we can discuss how much of a disaster it was from the jump. [JFTC]
- Meanwhile, in terms of ongoing problems in LA, JFTC asks what’s wrong with Drew Doughty? If I may: he’s old and on a terrible team. He just turned 30, and sometimes the decline is steeper for some players more than others, especially if the supporting cast is weak.
- While we’re out in California, who got the better end of the deal when the Sharks fired Peter DeBoer? [FTF]
- The Sporting News selects its all-2010s starting lineup and it’s the usual suspects, except for the goalie. [Sporting News]