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Islanders News: The Isles will return to the ice

Well, some of them, anyway. They have practice this morning.

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NHL: FEB 23 Sharks at Islanders
It has been that long.
Photo by David Hahn/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

In case you cannot tell which San Jose Sharks player hounds Mathew Barzal in this story’s photo, it is Barclay Goodrow. That name sounds familiar, doesn't it?

The last time that the New York Islanders played the Sharks, Goodrow was still there—although, it turned out to be his last game as a Shark. That was on February 23, 2020.

The very next day, San Jose traded him to the Tampa Bay Lightning for a package including a first-round pick. After that, we saw way too much of Goodrow—13 brutal games of him, in fact. And now he’s a cross-town rival. Man, I hate that guy.

But yeah, it was two Barclay-Goodrow-teams ago since the Isles and Sharks saw each other; it might be longer still, depending on the Islanders’ COVID situation. Arthur Staple had heard that the Isles will try to practice today if they receive no negative tests from those not in protocol.

But hey, it turns out that they will practice this morning. Some good news on the first of December.

Canadian national hockey reporter John Shannon quote-tweeted Staple saying that he heard that the league today should provide an update about tomorrow’s game against San Jose.

So, we’ll see where it all goes. It has been radio silence from the Islanders themselves since they shut down, but that’s nothing new with Lou.

Islanders News—The Podcast Edition

First, some reading:

  • This is old news now, but as of yesterday, there was still no word as to whether the Isles could resume activities. I still don’t think we know about tomorrow’s game, even though they’re practicing today. [Newsday]
  • Last year, Nick Leddy was one of the best puck-moving defensemen in all three zones in the league, as he usually is. We probably miss him more than we thought we would. Also, Ryan Pulock was a top-25 puck-mover who was really good in the offensive zone. [The Athletic]
  • Arthur Staple answers your questions, like “is Robin Salo going to stick?” and “will Lou tear it down?” [The Athletic Mailbag Part I]

Okay, the pods:

  • Former Isles coach Scott Gordon is Staple’s guest cohost for December on No Sleep Til Belmont. They talked about his time on the Island and what he thinks is wrong with the current group.
  • The Nassaumen Hockey Podcast chatted about the losing streak and the COVID-19 situation.
  • Islanders and TNT play-by-play commentator Brendan Burke sat for the fourteenth episode of the Talkin’ Isles podcast.
  • And Chris Botta spoke to Mollie Walker, who covers both the Islanders and the Rangers for the New York Post, on Hockey Press Pass.

Elsewhere

It was wild last night in the NHL—multiple-goal comebacks all over the place. The Florida Panthers entered the third period trailing the Washington Capitals 4-1 and scored four straight goals in regulation, including the game-winner with 14.4 seconds left. Not to be outdone, the St. Louis Blues conceded three first-period goals to the Tampa Bay Lightning (including this flukey howler) and then came back to win in the shootout. The Los Angeles Kings trailed 4-1 in the third period and forced a shootout, but they ultimately lost to the Anaheim Ducks.

  • Oh, and Filip Forsberg dropped four goals in the Nashville Predators’ 6-0 rout of the Columbus Blue Jackets. No team that the Isles have to chase earned a point last night—how glorious. [NHL]
  • Boston Bruins coach and serial whiner Bruce Cassidy missed last night’s regulation loss to the Detroit Red Wings while in COVID-19 protocol. [Broons]
  • Edmonton Oilers defenseman Cody Ceci also was placed in COVID-19 protocol, and the Oilers canceled practice yesterday. [Edmonton Journal]
  • Bruins forward Jake DeBrusk, famously picked two spots ahead of Barzal in 2015, has requested a trade. His relationship with Cassidy has crumbled. [The Athletic]
  • Patrick Roy has let it be known that he would be interested in the Montreal Canadiens GM job. But if we’re all being honest, no, he wouldn’t. There is absolutely no way that a guy with his ego would be okay with being Jeff Gorton’s French-speaking mouthpiece. [CTV News | Sportsnet]
  • I would guess that the Habs know that, too, because the scuttlebutt is that Danny Brière is a top candidate for the position. He is a one-time Canadien who grew up in Quebec and speaks French and who worked under Gorton as the GM of the New York Rangers’ ECHL affiliate. [Sportsnet]
  • In any event, the Canadiens committed to making a foundational change by making this move. That and more in Elliotte Friedman’s 32 Thoughts, including dimming hopes about the NHL going to Beijing in Feburary.
  • Kings forward Brendan Lemieux received a five-game suspension for biting Ottawa Senators captain Brady Tkachuk. He and his notorious father, Claude, are now the first-ever father-son duo in the NHL to be suspended for biting. [NHL]
  • New Jersey Devils phenom and former no. 1 overall pick Jack Hughes signed an eight-year, $64 million extension and celebrated by getting back on the ice last night after missing 17 games. [NHL]
  • And finally, Seattle Kraken captain Mark Giordano continues to show the NHL and the Calgary Flames that he still has more to give. [The Athletic]