Boy, was I mad the other night. I always hate losing to the Washington Capitals, but I especially hate losing to them after being up 3-0, which the New York Islanders have now done three times in the last four seasons (all in January, peculiarly—the Devon Toews bird celly game comes immediately to mind).
The season-long five-game homestand concludes tonight with a visit from the league-leading Boston Bruins. I’m sure it will go really well. The Isles are 1-1-2 so far on this homestand. No rest, though, because they’re right back at it tomorrow night with a short trip up to see the Buffalo Sabres.
The Islanders are currently tied with the Pittsburgh Penguins in points, albeit in two more games. Fortunately, the Caps lost their 47th game in regulation last night, so they remain at 54 points with the Isles and Pens at 50. Even better for the Islanders, they have two games in hand on Washington, so they’re theoretically in striking distance.
FIGs go here. It’s a 7:30 p.m. start time, and the game is on TNT, but not with Brendan Burke’s crew.
UPDATE: At this morning’s practice there were a couple of surprises...William Dufour and Dennis Cholowski have been recalled from Bridgeport, and appear to be in the plans for tonight’s game. It would be an NHL debut for Dufour; Cholowski has 115 NHL games played with the Red Wings, Capitals and Kraken.
What I think I see at #Isles morning skate— Andrew Gross (@AGrossNewsday) January 18, 2023
(Wotherspoon-Pelech extra pair)
Extra F: Johnston
- A preview of tonight’s game. It’s Bob Nystrom Legends Night, so now you can get a Bobby Ny bobblehead. As such, if you want to win a bobblehead but won’t be in attendance, you can get one by winning Trivia. [Islanders]
Celebrate #Isles Legend Bob Nystrom tonight at @UBSArena.— New York Islanders (@NYIslanders) January 18, 2023
️: https://t.co/p3imnY2PyH pic.twitter.com/imsvhutj9W
- It doesn’t take a hockey whiz to figure out that the Islanders need to score more. And at this point, the answer obviously isn’t coming from within. [The Athletic]
- You don’t always want to make a change just for change’s sake, but it’s clear that something has gone stale with these Islanders, and they need some kind of shakeup. [amNY]
- In any event, they can’t keep letting points slip away, like Monday’s OT loss or Thursday’s regulation loss, both games the Islanders led in the third period. [Newsday]
- On the bright side, Hudson Fasching has become a solid NHL contributor. We love a story like that. [The Athletic | Newsday]
- Matt Maggio is the first in the OHL to hit 30 goals, and his vaunted team just got Shane Wright to center him. [Prospect Report]
Last night’s NHL scores include the Capitals losing in regulation to the Minnesota Wild at home, the Panthers, Sabres, and Red Wings all losing in extra time, and the Flyers winning yet again.
- It’s rare that an NHL front office executive gives away as much as Jim Rutherford did the other day with the Vancouver Canucks. [32 Thoughts]
- The Philadelphia Flyers hosted Pride Night, wearing Pride warmup jerseys before the game. Ivan Provorov didn’t take warmups because he refused to wear the jersey, citing his religious beliefs, and the team let him play anyway. [Philly Hockey Now]
- Traitor (just kidding, gotta pay those bills) Jaroslav Halak rebounded after a tough start to his Rangers career. [Inside the Rink]
- When the New York Times buys your company, you need to produce content. Thus, yet another ranking of players under a certain age, 23. The Isles have five players on the list, with Noah Dobson checking in at No. 11. [The Athletic]