The Islanders are at the Coliseum tonight to host the Avalanche. Colorado has been one of the better teams in the league this season. They did hit a bit of a rough stretch through the end of December, but two consecutive blowouts against the Blues and Devils suggest that they’re probably out of a slump.
Just means the Islanders will have to give it their best. Hopefully, the pucks go in for them tonight, unlike Saturday night in Toronto.
FIG Picks go here. Puck drop is at 7:00 p.m.
Recaps from the Maple Leafs’ shutout: LHH | Islanders | Newsday | NHL | NYI Skinny
Barry Trotz said he liked the Islanders’ game overall, just couldn’t score:
"Are you frustrated, yeah a little bit. You know you played a solid game. You bury a couple of those chances and maybe you’re leaving here with a point or a victory. You didn’t get rewarded for it." - Barry Trotz pic.twitter.com/EEN6GDvWRd— New York Islanders (@NYIslanders) January 5, 2020
- John Tavares lauds the Islanders’ defensive improvement; he’s quoted as saying, “how do we do that?” [Newsday]
- With Adam Pelech’s season-ending injury, the whole defense corps is going to have to step up together to make up for his loss. [Islanders]
- That means that Noah Dobson has had the training wheels taken off his bike. And, as is tradition, he fell over on his first ride, in the form of Kasperi Kapanen walking him like a dog, leading to the first goal. But Johnny Boychuk let him know that has happened to everyone, and Trotz said the same thing. [Newsday]
- However, it’s become abundantly clear the Isles could use some offensive jolt. (Ironically enough, I believe this was written before the shutout in Toronto.) [WFAN]
- Especially because Trotz has tried every line combination he possibly can with the current group. [Newsday]
- One possible solution is in Bridgeport: Kieffer Bellows scored again, his 14th of the season. It wasn’t enough for the Sound Tigers, though, who lost 4-2 to the Hershey Bears. [Sound Tigers]
- The Islanders rely heavily on smelling salts, even though they smell awful. [Islanders]
- A change of pace, putting this toward the end of the Islanders section: let’s preview tonight’s game against the Avs, shall we? [Islanders]
This is how you raise a child, in my opinion:
My son knows all the @NHL teams. But he makes his favorite and least favorite team known!!! @NYIslanders #isles #nhl pic.twitter.com/XfW6L2VErn— Justin (@NyifanBarzal13) January 2, 2020
Saturday’s and Sunday’s NHL scores, and both weren’t too bad for the Islanders’ standing position. On Saturday, the Penguins beat the Canadiens in overtime, but the Sharks beat the Blue Jackets and the Coyotes whooped the Flyers. And on Sunday, the Metro mostly fell in the Isles’ favor, except for the Capitals (see below). The Panthers beat the Penguins and the the Lightning beat the Hurricanes, both in regulation. Thank you, State of Florida.
- HOWEVAH, I cannot stand the Capitals, man. They’re losing 3-2 late in the game yesterday afternoon to the Sharks and pull the goalie. They give up an empty netter with a minute to go to seemingly seal the deal, but then Washington pops two quick 6-on-5 goals to send it to overtime, where they won it. What the hell is that?
- Alex Ovechkin has been Washington’s captain for a decade. I’m old, and so are you. [NHL]
- Mike Sullivan, coach of the Penguins, likely deserves some Jack Adams consideration. Everyone on that team has been hurt at some point this year, but he still has them rolling. [PensBurgh]
- Blackhawks goalie Robin Lehner sustained a knee injury in Thursday’s game against the Canucks and is day-to-day. [NHL]
- Elias Pettersson’s two closest childhood friends were deported from Sweden to Armenia when he was 13, and this heartbreaking story taught him to take nothing for granted. [Sportsnet]