Some sadness in the Islanders country over the weekend as we lost another one, Gerry Hart, an original Isle who was a key figure in the march from expansion to contention but was not around for the Cup years.
Separately, this time of year means some anniversaries of big moments (including a rare Hart goal, plus an infamous goal that still stings in Pittsburgh).
- Condolences to the family and friends of inaugural Islander Gerry Hart, originally of Flin Flon and later a Long Island fixture, has passed away at 75. [Isles | NHL | Newsday | Post]
Here’s the big Mother’s Day game-winning goal Hart scored 48 years ago, in the 1975 series where the Isles pushed the reigning and eventual Cup champion Flyers to the brink:
- Yesterday in Islanders history was the 30th anniversary of the delicious David Volek Game 7 overtime goal that knocked off the Penguins. [Isles]
- “Dave Volek. His name is scratched in my skull.” The Penguins who were involved are still are not over that glorious moment. [Trib Live]
- In a hilarious 250th episode, Dan and Mike get some things off their chest in a cathartic, impromptu episode of Islanders Anxiety that celebrates the demise and coverage of one of the most annoying...franchises? markets? fanbases? general presences? in the NHL. The longer you wait, the more material comes out of that godforsaken manufactured hype hell hole. [Islanders Anxiety via LHH]
Dan referenced this in the episode, but it’s worth re-airing his instant classic tweet here, because it really does sum up the nature of our discontent beautifully, and the reaction shows how many NHL fans are irked by the tone deaf media who ostensibly cover hockey but really only ever ask “What does this mean for the Leafs?”:
In the biggest upset in NHL playoff history, a team with zero regular writers at The Athletic has eliminated a team with eight of them. A truly historic feat.— Dan (@cultureoflosing) May 13, 2023
The self-reinforcing (and inflating) “Center of the [Hockey] Universe” attention echo chamber coming out of Toronto makes following the NHL maddening, and the Athletic — after picking off beatwriters across the continent in a bid for comprehensive coverage, then abandoning markets — plays right into it. Heavens, the GTA needs a second NHL team and possibly a third to break up the delusional Leafs Ma Bell death star, but the Leafs universe itself is already too far gone, I’m afraid.
- Last night in Edmonton, Jonathan Marchesseault scored a natural hat trick as the Godlen Knights eliminated the Oilers. It won’t be anywhere like what Toronto produces, the Edmonton post-mortems should be entertaining. [NHL]
- Heading into the third period trailing 4-2, the Oilers pulled Calder finalist Stuart Skinner for the third time in the series. [Sportsnet]
- Aaand here it is, they have this story canned and just update the details each year: “Canada’s” Stanley Cup drought continues, as if “Canada” is vying for the Cup rather than 32 franchises in a multi-billion-dollar industry. [Sportsnet]
- Since the Leafs were eliminated Friday, there have been about 148 articles about what they should do now, and this is just one of them. [Sportsnet]
- Tonight, the final game of the second round takes place with the Kraken at the Stars, who are coached by Peter DeBoer, who’s yet to lose a Game 7. [NHL]
- The Hurricanes look toward the conference final knowing they have options in goal. [TSN]
- A year after leaving the Jets midseason and recharging, Paul Maurice has seen the Panthers help restore his love for coaching in the NHL. [Sportsnet]
- Ryan O’Reilly’s mom gave one of her kidneys to the guy who ran the local rink for her boys and countless other young players over the years. [ESPN]
- John Tortorella looks forward to working with, learning from Danny Briere and Keith Jones. [NHL] He and ownership are like, “Yeah, we get it, you think we just picked a couple old Flyers to run things again, but we swear it’s different.” And it may be. But they’ve earned the skepticism. [TSN]
- Lindy Ruff’s contract is up, but he hopes to return to coach the Devils some more. [NHL]
- The Flames want to “feel that winning culture” again. [NHL]