Happy Monday (and a belated Happy Mothers Day to all the moms out there). It’s What If? Week at SB Nation so expect some historical fiction coming your way in the next few days.
As for actual hockey, that’s still up in the air. A source tells Newsday’s Andrew Gross that the Return to Play plans have been narrowed down to two. And which one they go with strongly depends on when the players are allowed to play again.
The first scenario includes 24 teams. Under this plan, the top four teams would play for playoff seeding and the bottom teams would have postseason play-in games.
The second plan would include only 16 teams heading straight into the playoffs, with no regular-season games salvaged.
Deputy commish Bill Daly basically just says that a myriad of options are being looked out, which is both non-committal but also probably not wrong. As usual, it feels like there are details missing from these scenarios so we’ll just have to continue to wait (safely) and see what transpires over the next little while.
Meanwhile over in the AHL, as Ottawa’s Bruce Garrioch reported on Sunday, the league was mulling cancelling the rest of the season, possibly as early as today. That announcement has now been made official. The gate-driven league didn’t see much point in holding out any longer. The Bridgeport Sound Tigers had a rough season, finishing 2019-20 with a record of 23-33-5-2 for 53 points in 63 games. They were in last place in the Atlantic Division at the time of the league’s pause.
Unlike the Stanley Cup, the Calder Cup had been awarded every season since 1937. However, this will become the first season it will not be given out.— Ted Starkey (@TedStarkey) May 11, 2020
Again, the landscape changes quickly, but this is another consideration that will surely have at least some impact on the NHL’s decision about what to do with the rest of its season.
- Hockey moms are a tough breed and Long Island hockey wouldn’t be the same without them. And that goes for the Islanders, too.
- NEW! Arthur Staple tells most behind-the-scenes Islanders stories, this time focusing on the draft floor. Includes tales of Tavares, Ho-Sang and an entire draft worth of picks. [The Athletic]
- Newsday continues its look at the Islanders’ first Cup run in 1980 and this weekend, it focused on captain Denis Potvin. Being named captain after Clark Gillies gave up the “C” was a big deal; as was acquiring his brother Jean just prior to his drafting seven years earlier.
- NY Post columnist Mike Vaccaro remembers the man who inspired his Islanders fandom, the one-and-only Glenn “Chico” Resch.
- For Islanders fans of a certain vintage, Mick Vukota is a legend on par with any other. The man may have left Long Island, but he always will considers it home. [Islanders]
- Not Islanders: The players on the inaugural Vegas Golden Knights roster will have streets named after them in a new suburban development. Yes, all of them. Get that down payment ready for that house on Luca Sbisa Street. [The Athletic]
We can’t mention Mick Vukota without also mentioning The Hat Trick.