I was going to do a corny April Fools’ joke, but it was too corny even for me.
You guys were supposed to think you weren’t going to get any Bits today. I was going to hit enter a bunch of times on this one and then eventually say, “April Fools!!! Here they are hehe.” But I think we’d all be better off without that level of cringe in these Bits. The delay in me posting these is enough of a joke.
Anyway, the New York Islanders will not be playing series for a little while; instead, they will alternate playing the Washington Capitals and Philadelphia Flyers over the next four games. They will host the Capitals tonight at Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum. The Capitals lost Tuesday night to the New York Rangers, but have won 14 of their last 17.
The Isles have struggled with the Caps this season, going 0-for-3 and twice snatching defeat from the jaws of victory. They haven’t played them on Coliseum ice, though, and thus haven’t been able to get the match-ups they want. Let’s hope for a nice regulation win tonight—hoping isn’t jinxing, right?
In the meantime, GM Lou Lamoriello surely has continued working the phones looking for reinforcements. We hope. See above about hoping.
- The team site previews tonight’s contest. The Caps are hot. The Isles, well, are not.
- Listen to Barry Trotz:
Trotz Practice Availability pic.twitter.com/EGmRPjF11y— New York Islanders (@NYIslanders) March 31, 2021
- The Islanders have some scores to settle with these Capitals. [Newsday]
- Michael Dal Colle will still be out tonight, but Noah Dobson should return, thankfully. [Islanders]
- The Islanders have slipped a little in the ESPN Power Rankings, down to 10 from 7. A rough week can do that.
- Arthur Staple revisits his bold predictions from the postseason. [The Athletic]
- Cory Schneider played in a game! He received a conditioning start with the Sound Tigers. [CT Insider] Bridgeport lost to Providence in overtime, however. [Sound Tigers]
- Let’s check in on Bridgeport as a whole. [Bridgeport Report]
- This day in Isles history: Mike Bossy scored his 50th and 51st goals to become both the first Islander and first NHL rookie to hit 50 goals in a season (1978).
The Podcast Section
- Dan and Mike chat about the dark clouds rolling for the Isles and Mike discusses his recent chat with Elliotte Friedman for 31 Thoughts. [Islanders Anxiety]
- Joe and Noel lament playing the Pittsburgh Penguins. [PTIsles]
- Andrew Gross talks home ice by himself, trades with E.J. Hradek, and Caps with Samantha Pell. [Newsday]
Last night’s NHL scores include the Buffalo Sabres finally slaying the beast, thumping the Flyers to make up for blowing the last game against them, and mercilessly ending their streak at 18 games. Also, the Colorado Avalanche whacked the Arizona Coyotes by a score of 9–3; Joonas Donskoi recorded a hat trick as his team scored five goals in the first seven-and-a-half minutes. The game between the Vancouver Canucks and Calgary Flames was postponed for COVID-19 protocol.
- The streak may have ended, but the Sabres are still a mess. How do you fix them? [ESPN]
- The Canucks have extended their very good goalie, Thatcher Demko, for five more years with a $5 million AAV. [NHL]
- Unfortunately for them, though, Elias Pettersson’s injury is worse than initially thought. [NHL]
- The Seattle Kraken has influenced the Trade Deadline as teams have reached out to GM Ron Francis to see what it would cost to protect certain players, those not on the protected lists. It’s a lot. [LeBrun @ The Athletic]
- Connor McDavid only received a $5,000 fine for elbowing Jesperi Kotkaniemi. It was vicious, blatant, and nowhere near the play. Anyone else would be suspended, I’d think. [NHL]
- Revisiting a failed stunt from the late ‘90s: San Jose Sharks mascot Sharkie was suspended 40 feet in the air with no way up or down. [The Athletic]