Ho-hum, just another massively important game in the franchise’s revival and with our emotional well-being on the line.
The New York Islanders are in Tampa for Game 5 vs. the Lightning, and a win would give them two shots — including one at Nassau Coliseum — to close out the series and reach their first Stanley Cup final since 1984.
But...first things first, and all that. One step at a time, etc. Things could go south in a hurry, or this magical 2021 ride could continue. No lineup curveballs are expected or anything like that; these teams know what to expect from each other and it’s just a matter of who sticks to it better and who maybe gets a bounce or missed call or two.
Brendan Burke has the fill-in call for NBC Sports, so hopefully the Islanders provide him a chance to do a memorable call in a totally neutral voice.
Wherever you are to catch this one, we understand you are ready.
Totally outside of things, but here’s a periodic reminder that Marian Gaborik and former Islander Anders Nilsson are on the Lightning, technically, for a total cap savings of over $7 million (Not that we’re complaining.):
The league has identified 18 players that are exempt from the Expansion Draft due to Injury— CapFriendly (@CapFriendly) June 21, 2021
All 18 players are displayed below
Keep in mind pending UFAs who've already announced retirement are included as their contracts don't expire until Free Agencyhttps://t.co/DP5mKUfZ26 pic.twitter.com/wAx63gC1hs