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Islanders News: Holy Mother of Bits!

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NHL: Stanley Cup Playoffs-New York Islanders at Pittsburgh Penguins
That’s perseverance, baby.
Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

Folks, we’ve still got at least four days until our next series starts. I’m happy the Islanders got some time off, but I need hockey. At least there are over thirty links to choose from today! And worry-free playoff action later on and all night, huzzah!

Islanders News

  • The big news from yesterday: defenseman Johnny Boychuk is going to be out 3-4 weeks with a broken something (they’re calling it a lower-body injury). He left Game 4 against the Penguins hobbled in pain after blocking an Erik Gudbranson shot. [Islanders | NHL | Newsday]
  • VIDEO: GM Lou Lamoriello had that to say and more in his media availability after practice on Friday. Cal Clutterbuck and Scott Mayfield took maintenance days, but they will play. [Islanders]
  • So, what do they do now? Thomas Hickey to the rescue. [LHH | The Athletic]
  • Robin Lehner was announced as a nominee for the Bill Masterton Award for perseverance. He’s considered the favorite — the other nominees are Nick Foligno of the Blue Jackets and Joe Thornton of the Sharks. [LHH | Newsday | NHL]
  • The long wait isn’t that big of a deal to the Islanders — six of the last seven series-sweepers went on to win their next round of play. [Newsday]
  • AUDIO: Dan and Mike discuss both of these topics — Lehner and the time off — on this episode of Islanders Anxiety. [LHH]
  • Barry Trotz says that his quote from inside the Capitals locker room back in November came “from [his] heart.” [NY Post]
  • NBC announcer Kenny Albert is loving the success of his long-time friend in Trotz. [NY Post]
  • AUDIO: Josh Bailey went on the radio with Greg Brady in Toronto to discuss the sweep of the Penguins, if he’s watching the Capitals-Hurricanes series, and having Uncle Leo Komarov as a teammate. [Sportsnet]
  • The Town of Hempstead petitioned the NHL to move the rest of the Islanders playoff games from Barclays Center to the Coliseum, but the NHL rejected the idea. Officially a done deal. Oh well, rock the Barc. [Newsday]
  • The Islanders definitely expect it to be loud there. We will make it loud. [Islanders]
  • Our own Mike Leboff has some advice on how to bet the NHL playoffs from his own website: ignore the noise. [The Action Network]
  • The AHL playoffs started up this weekend, and the Sound Tigers hosted Game 1 last night against the Hershey Bears. Here’s how they’re going into it [Soundin’ Off] and here’s how their opponent is sizing things up. [Hershey Bears Hockey Nation]
  • Bridgeport took Game 1 in double OT last night, completing the comeback after being down 2-0 to Hershey. Kieffer Bellows scored twice: the Sound Tigers’ first goal to get them back into the game and then the double OT game winner. [CT Post]
  • But there was a casualty. Former Islander Aaron Ness, playing for Hershey, crashed into the iron with his leg and then into the backboards with his head, and he was left face-down on the ice. He did not move. He had to be rolled onto the stretcher. Really scary moment for Ness and his family. We hope he’s going to be okay. [Newsday]
  • Ilya Sorokin’s CSKA Moscow swept the Gagarin Cup Finals to give his team the KHL Title. He was named Playoff MVP with his sterling 16-4 record and a .956 save percentage through 20 games. [Islanders Prospect Report]
  • Continuing his run-up to the organization’s first Cup win, Stan Fischler remembers how the Islanders beat the Sabres in the third round to advance to the 1980 Stanley Cup Final. [Maven’s Memories]

More Islanders-Penguins Fallout

  • Trotz loved how the Islanders maintained their composure in the First Round. There were some fisticuffs but it was under control. [NY Post]
  • The Pittsburgh media is definitely coming for the Penguins more than they are crediting the Islanders at this point, and even some Penguins players are singing that tune. [TribLIVE]
  • Their fans are really, really hoping they don’t do something dumb and reactionary. I, on the other hand, am! [PensBurgh]
  • In all honesty, they probably shouldn’t. They just need to game plan better. The Islanders did that well in both ends of the rink, and here’s how. [The Athletic]

Last Night’s Playoff Action, and Other Playoff Bits

There were two games last night:

  • In Game 5 in Boston, the Maple Leafs broke a scoreless tie with the Bruins midway through the third period on a questionable goal that Boston unsuccessfully challenged for goaltender interference. It definitely seemed like it could have been. Toronto went on to win 2-1 to take a 3-2 series lead back home with them. Game 6 is Sunday afternoon.
  • And the Flames went back home to Calgary needing to win Game 5 to stay alive in their series with the Avalanche. But, they got absolutely destroyed by Colorado 5-1. If you’re keeping score at home, the top seeds in both conferences are out in the First Round, and they combined to win exactly one playoff game. Goodness gracious. The Avs will take on the winner of the Sharks-Golden Knights series — Vegas leads 3-2 heading into Game 6 at home. Also, keep in mind today’s date and Colorado’s stance on a certain substance. The city of Denver must be one big-ass celebratory cloud right now.

And some other items:

  • With the Hurricanes win the other night, they tied the Capitals at 2-2 in the series. It comes down to a best-of-3. Here’s how they got to that point. [Canes Country]
  • The playoffs would be nothing without the Black Aces, there to step in at a moment’s notice. [The Athletic]

Elsewhere

  • Ken Holland, GM of the Red Wings for the last 22 years, helped bring in his replacement, the legendary Steve Yzerman. At least he’s not going to the Rangers. [TSN]
  • He’s tasked with rebuilding Detroit’s team from the ground up, much like Holland had to do around him. Here’s one approach on getting their Wings off the ground (please stop throwing tomatoes at me). [WIIM]
  • The nominees for the Frank J. Selke Award for best defensive forward were announced, and it’s the usual suspects: Patrice Bergeron, Ryan O’Reilly, and Mark Stone. [THN]
  • The Kings have hired Todd McLellan as their coach, and their fans are not that happy about it. [Jewels From the Crown]
  • The Seattle expansion franchise is working hard to rebuild the old Key Arena. [NHL]
  • The NCAA is changing its recruiting guidelines for D-I men’s ice hockey. [NHL]
  • The Flyers have announced they’re cutting ties with Kate Smith’s recordings after some ugly lyrics from a 1930s song she released have come to light, following suit of the Yankees. [Courier Post]