Do you feel that chill in the air? It’s a brisk morning on Long Island. It almost feels like fall... like October... like hockey season...
We’re getting at least one more weekend of summer weather, perfectly timed for Labor Day weekend, the traditional end of summer. After that, though, perhaps the brisk mornings will become the trend? In any event, we’re 39 days away from October 4.
- Justin Bourne determined that Johnny Boychuk (3rd) and Ryan Pulock (6th) both landed in the top ten for most slap shots this past season, and the Islanders, as a team, took the fourth-most in the league. Bourne also chose Pulock as a guy to highlight because of his extremely hard shot. [The Athletic]
- New Isles goalie Semyon Varlamov spoke with the team site for a little Q&A - he’s been on the ice at Eisenhower Park with a few of the early arrivals. [Islanders]
He will be wearing no. 40 this season, as evidenced by this tweet posted yesterday:
- Matt Martin hosted his fifth annual Hockey Academy at Northwell Health Ice Center and the campers all love working with him. [Islanders]
- Stan Fischler regales the tale of the second round series between the Islanders and Rangers in 1983, a series between two teams that actively hated each other. Guess who won? [Maven’s Memories]
Let’s throw it back to January, when the Isles beat the Stanley Cup champs:
- New Wild GM Bill Guerin has “full confidence” in Bruce Boudreau as coach, which could be seen as the kiss of death in many circumstances. But with an excellent coach like Boudreau, I think Guerin really does mean it. [NHL]
- Pat Maroon signed a one-year deal for $900,000 to go play for the Lightning, but he left a heartfelt message on Twitter for his hometown Blues and the fans on his way out. [NHL]
- The Senators will not name a captain this season, the second season in a row they’ll go without one. Erik Karlsson was the last one to don a ‘C’ in Ottawa. [NHL]
- Auston Matthews says it would be a “huge honor” to be the Maple Leafs’ first captain since 2016. He was also quoted as saying something to the effect of “it wouldn’t be for too long, since I’m going home to the Coyotes in five years, but at least I’m letting you know about it.” Sounds like the race for the captaincy is getting a little competitive up in Toronto. [NHL | Sportsnet]
- The VMAs are coming to New Jersey, and Devils players P.K. Subban and Blake Coleman are going to be a part of the festivities. [NHL]
- Minnesota forward Mats Zuccarello isn’t pleased that he has a lower rating than former Rangers teammate Mika Zibanejad on NHL 20. [NHL]
- VIDEO: Blackhawks Alex DeBrincat and Dylan Strome crashed the Cubs game and MLB Players Weekend. They sang a particularly awful rendition of “Take Me Out to the Ball Game” to the Wrigley faithful, who were seen covering their ears. [NHL]