11/20/07

11/21: New York vs Montreal 7pm FSN-2

New York Islander Fan Central | 11/20/2007 09:18:00 PM
Islanders Website/AP: Has the early preview for Wednesday's game against the Montreal Canadians.

NYI Fan Central Comments:
Montreal is a good skating team that can score. Islanders are going to have to break out with a big offensive game or again work the opposition into the ice and play for a low-scoring game. Islanders saw this team in camp twice for what that is worth.

A lot of players are due to score in this lineup.

Usatoday.com: Kevin Allen has an outstanding feature on the Islanders so far this season where he writes this is the most cohesive teams the Islanders have had in years. Garth Snow said the club will address resigning Comrie halfway through the season when they are allowed to negotiate.

"The biggest plus on our team right now is chemistry," Snow says. "So many of the players have come up to (coach Ted Nolan) or myself and said this is the best group of guys they have ever played with."

"It's like we have been playing together for years," says Islanders goaltender Rick DiPietro. The biggest need we had was for a guy like Bill Guerin to come in here and be a leader and hold guys accountable."


Newsday: Erik Boland as usual opens the debate for post-Ranger hangover discussion while captain Bill Guerin called it ridiculous and is not talking anymore about it. He did talk about all the close games the Islanders have been involved in, while Ted Nolan was asked if the Islanders playing 15 games in 27 nights will force Rick DiPietro to take a break?

"You're never comfortable in those situations but we know how to play in those situations," Guerin said. "We want to get away from playing in those and it would be nice to play with a little cushion now and again, but the league's so close now you rarely get that."

"If he has to stop five or six breakaways a game or five or six 3-on-1 opportunities, that's pretty taxing," Nolan said. "Right now, we're pretty solid defensively." Nolan later added: "Right now he's as fresh as I've seen him and we'll just keep riding that fresh horse while he's fresh."


NYI Fan Central Comments:
Guerin is right in Boland bringing up post-Ranger hangover and calling it ridiculous. This ended last season with the Islanders winning several games after beating the Rangers and has continued this season and he knew the numbers so why bother? It's as dead as the streak the Caps had against the Islanders.

All the good story lines around this team and no daily blog, no hype for a lot of players who deserve it and no increased coverage. Instead this is what the club gets going into a big game against a very good Canadians team?

Media is the problem, not the team. This is why a lot of good players who merit praise get an under-rated label and no coverage.

Ct Post: Will have coverage tomorrow of the game Wednesday night at Hershey.

11/20: Islander Notables

New York Islander Fan Central | 11/20/2007 07:24:00 PM
Montreal Gazette: The theme of Pat Hickey's article is how neither team got any respect in the prediction department going into the season and a preview of Wednesday's game. Cristobal Huet, is getting the start because he has a 3-2-1 record against the Islanders with a 2.16 goals-against average.

"They're playing really well defensively," said Carbonneau, who stressed defence and five-on-five play in the Canadiens' practice at the Bell Centre prior to flying here Tuesday.

"I know it's going to be a hard game. There are two teams nobody expected to be there so it's going to be fun."


Canadian Press: Pierre Lebrun has the usual Islanders are a quiet surprise in a division they were predicted to finish last in. Comments from GM Garth Snow and a lot of praise from Mike Comrie on Guerin, Ted Nolan and Rick DiPietro.

"It's still early in the season," cautioned Isles GM Garth Snow. "We haven't even got to the 20-game mark yet. But the encouraging part of that is that we feel we should have a better record than what we have."

"We got the players that we thought would give us the best opportunity to win," said Snow. "I know some people outside this organization were sceptical and maybe didn't know what was going on, but we had a plan and we stuck to it."

On Ted Nolan:
"He's been great," said Comrie. "He really lets the players do their thing. The thing that he demands is that everybody works hard. "You look at his track record, he seems to get the most out of the players that he has," added Comrie. "I don't think it's a secret there's a reason why he's considered a players' coach."

"Ricky DiPietro gives us a chance to win every night," said Comrie. "He's a goaltender that never gives up. He's very athletic. You can tell in practice, he doesn't want one puck to get in."


Globe and Mail : David Shoalts claims a source told the Globe and Mail NHL commissioner Gary Bettman has ruled Neil Smith is not entitled to any meaningful compensation for his brief run as the New York Islanders because he did not have an enforceable contract. The ruling is not final because not all parties have signed off on it but the commissioner did make his decision known to the parties involved. An NHL spokesman said Bettman has not rendered a decision and has not held an official hearing and a settlement could still be reached.

NYI Fan Central Comments:
Hopefully this stays buried behind the scenes. If Mr Wang introduced him as the gm by committee or otherwise he should be entitled to some compensation. I guess Bettman knows something we do not know.

Espn.com: Jonah Keri has a very good feature article on Mike Sillinger.

Canada.com/Cam West News: Reports The New York Islanders became the first team in NHL history to play seven straight regulation games decided by one goal. The streak includes five wins and two losses.

MLN Newswire : Reports former Islander Dave Scatchard has signed a PTO with the Milwaukee Admirals of the American Hockey League.

NYI Fan Central Comments:
Have to admire Scatchard for wanting to continue his career but at this point it's fair to ask what is wrong with his game to where he's at this point?

Espn.com: Scott Burnside of course keeps the glass as empty as possible for the Islanders in his breakdown of teams to this point and predicts a precipitous drop in the standings.

NYI Fan Central Comments:
Does Burnside understand the Islanders were a good team last year with ninety two points and anyone who has covered them on a daily basis see them as a team that's going to be very competitive who improved by not resigning players they did not want any longer? It's not like the club had seventy points last season or has not qualified for a playoff. They could start to struggle but not for the reason's Burnside claims.

Yahoo sports: Ross McKeon moves the Islanders into fifth in his power rankings league wide.

Seven straight one-goal games and winners in eight of 11 decided by a single tally for the season. And check this out, six are against rival Rangers and Devils, and Isles have won them all.

Media Blog: Cory Witt reports Time Warner Cable FSN NY HD is now available in NYC.

NYI Fan Central Comments:
Ok, now let's have Time Warner Cable in New York advertise the FSN-2 games on it's cable guide, not the TV guide channel and put the games on HD there also. Just as important drop the blackout for the FSN-2 team when the Islanders-Rangers-Devils play a head to head game.

At least let's put all the New York City Stations for Islander telecasts on the teams game preview, I'm tired of on reading about stations on Long Island.

Not the time to celebrate on this one. Why not put some Islander games on channel nine being that Msg can do that for another local team this Sunday instead of FSN-2.

Point Blank: Chris Botta talks about how great the players have been behind the scenes, how that seems to translate to their game when they are on pressure in games to this point and writes there's never been a better Islander team to deal with and notes the 01-02 group.

Ct Post: Michael Fornabaio's blog reports
lines Tuesday remained Tambellini-Walter-Bates and Bentivoglio-Nielsen-Regier. Tomorrow will be the first time since since 2006 that Tambellini and Nielsen won't begin the game on the same line.

Thanksgiving Update

New York Islander Fan Central | 11/20/2007 10:30:00 AM








A quick NYI Fan Central Update:

First of all to everyone a Very Happy Thanksgiving.

* Three games in twenty four days and now this?

* I will try and do a review of the Montreal game Wednesday and some of the early Thursday articles but will be traveling and very busy Wednesday night. I will put up the links to the Montreal Gazette and whatever other local coverage provided but check the news feeders on the page for supplemental coverage. Same goes for any review or updates of Hershey-Bridgeport on Wednesday as the Sound Tigers section of the page or other Islander-related articles.

* Friday will be a very busy day for me. Islanders-Boston is a noon start so the Friday articles and game preview thread will be combined if I have time to post a blog on it at all. Again look to the page feeders for coverage which always include the game preview and ITV updates.

Updated:
* Folks around here are really fantastic. I posted this early for release here tomorrow and by mistake put it on the blog now. By the time I pulled it I got two responses so I put it back even though it will get bumped down as more new blog entries go up.

* Thanks for the kind words Tom/B.D and again have a Happy Thanksgiving everyone.

Islander News Articles 11/20:

New York Islander Fan Central | 11/20/2007 12:36:00 AM

























Newsday: Greg Logan's game article is on how the Islanders battled and earned another one goal win on the strength of their team play. Some hype for DiPietro, Witt, Vasicek and the Islanders does not come from Logan here as most of his questions and comments were about Rozsval's shorthanded goal and Avery's antics.

"We had a two-on-one and I was trying to look for guys from the side, but I got hooked from behind and lost control of the puck," said Vasicek, who got the game-winner Friday in New Jersey. "Everybody seemed to move to the side, so I took the shot and it went in."

Trying to explain the Rangers' difficulty against the Isles, Jagr said, "I think they work together better than other teams."

Newsday: Logan's second article is on how Witt dominates Jagr again and how the Islanders ignored Avery's sideshow.

" ... Sometimes we forget the guys who do the gut work like Richard Park and Brendan Witt," Islanders coach Ted Nolan said. "Brendan does it every game for us. Shutting down Jagr is a tough chore for anybody. He did a tremendous job tonight."

"You want to eliminate his time and space," Witt said of Jagr.

"It seems like we're strong.er when it's a one-goal game," Witt said. "That's a good habit to get into. When you feel comfortable when you're one goal up in any situation, it's going to help your confidence."


Newsday: Mark Herrmann's Ranger article is on Avery and how he seems to love his impact on games but the big story may be an actual Radek Martinek quote from a local writer.

"I don't listen to him. Everybody told me, 'Don't listen to him. He's just talk.' I'm not complicated. One ear inside, other ear outside," said the defenseman, giving the Czech version of "in one ear, out the other."

"Really at this point, it's kind of amusing. It's the same stuff over and over again. There's nothing thought-provoking said," Islanders defenseman Andy Sutton said. "Aren't you guys getting sick of writing about it?"


NYI Fan Central Comments:
Note-Steve Zipay had a running blog during the game that gave credit to everything but the New York Islanders for the win. Greg Logan could not be bothered doing a running blog for Islander fans during the game in the only paper with the Islanders blog.

I guess DiPietro outplaying Lundqvist for his one hundredth win is just not a story Newsday wants to write about.

NY Times: Lynn Zisner, story line for the most part was how the Islanders frustrated the Rangers.

“The imperative word for us is smart,” Islanders goalie Rick DiPietro said. “When we play smart and make the right decisions, we’re a successful team.”

“I think we want to win so bad against them, sometimes I think we get a little too white-knuckled,” Rangers center Chris Drury said. “We’ve played them three times now, and in two out of the three, we haven’t played our system, our structure. Ultimately it’s cost us.”


Daily News: Peter Botte's limited space article has quotes from Rick DiPietro on his win and Ted Nolan and his players for their hard work.

We always compliment the goal-scorers, but sometimes we do not compliment the guys who do the gut work," Nolan said.

Daily News: John Dellapina writes about Rick DiPietro's success against the Rangers.

NY Post: The Post of course only sends Larry Brooks and he only does one Ranger centric article without a single Islander quoted. This begs the question why was Dan Martin assigned to an off day article before the four game road trip began if we were not going to see one Post article on the club, even at Msg?

Journal News: Ranger salesman Sam Weinman writes beating the Islanders is not setting the bar very high and writes the Islanders have been a pesky team even though Henrik Lundqvist credited the Islanders.

"We don't really get it," said Henrik Lundqvist, who made 22 saves in the loss. "They've been good. They've been smart and patient. I don't think you can take that away from them. But I think we can prove we're a much better team than we've shown them."


NYI Fan Central Comments:
Mr Weinman should check the standings and be grateful the Rangers have played four more games or the pesky Islanders would likely be in first place and the Rangers the team chasing considering a defenseman is their leading goal scorer on a club that spent close to ninety million on two centers who cannot play on the top line.

Ct Post: Michael Fornabaio had a blog and quick notebook here
mostly about Kip Brennan, who strained a knee in post game stretching, and he is likely to miss Wednesday's rematch with the Bears at Hershey with some team notables.

New York 2, Rangers 1: DiPietro wins #100

New York Islander Fan Central | 11/20/2007 12:13:00 AM

















Islanders Website: Has the recap of the Islanders 2-1 win Monday at Msg which was Rick DiPietro's one hundredth career win.

"You know coming into these games they're going to be battles," said DiPietro. "Our guys did the dirty work and sacrificed to win. We got the pucks out, blocked shots and cleared rebounds. The penalty kill also worked hard."

"We just seem to get the bounces," said head coach Ted Nolan in response to why the Islanders have the Rangers' number the past two seasons. "We got some clutch scoring from Ruslan and Jo, who has been playing very well recently. And Ricky was Ricky. You need your best players to step up and he's done it all season."


NYI Fan Central Comments:
Full marks to the Islanders for an outstanding effort from top to bottom. The Rangers wanted to win this game as much as the Islanders despite their spin doctors trying to claim anything else.

Nolan put out a game plan the Rangers could not match and as usual Tom Renney was out coached in his own building. Islanders made Lundqvist and their defense go behind their own net and worked them all night in the corners, the outstanding team defensive play did the rest and kept most of the pressure off DiPietro.

Both teams played tough hockey but clearly the Islanders played the smarter hockey and kept finding the open man.

Fedotenko's goal off a set play was an outstanding setup by Mike Comrie as Hossa fell asleep. Vasicek was dominating and besides his fantastic shot for the 2-0 goal was making big plays all over the ice, his kick pass to Satan was a great setup.

Witt, Berard leveled Avery and Drury. Martinek was dominating with and without the puck. Sutton took a few penalties and had one bad stretch but otherwise again was solid. Gervais and Campoli looked fantastic and again played a very smart defensive game with Campoli knowing when to pinch or throw a big hit.

Jagr looked like someone who again wanted no part of Brendan Witt.

The line on the telecast said it best about Avery, all his mail should be delivered to the penalty box. DiPietro should not have hit him but aside from that he was not a factor outside of the sideshow. DiPietro's stick handling had the Rangers chasing the puck all night while Lundqvist looked like a mistake waiting to happen who almost handed the Islanders a goal just before they scored the 2-0 goal.

Islanders should have had another two or three goals. Satan over handled one, Hunter missed from in close and Berard hit the Post. Sillinger line just wore down the Rangers and even if Hilbert cannot score he works very hard. Only downside which is no small story is another shorthanded goal allowed and not much pp pressure.

This Islander team is just faster than other years and do skate as a unit and they are in the box far less. The offense is a concern but you see Bergenheim's energy followed by Fedntenko and then the fourth line starts skating well and they just look like a very tough team to beat and it becomes contagious with someone like Hunter who is a bull in the corners. They don't finish a lot but they have not been outworked often and it's an Islander team defense that seems to be improving with every game.

If Guerin, Comrie, Sillinger and some of the players due to score breakout and produce with this level of defense they are going to be a very good hockey team all season. Guerin brings a lot of smart play but offensively for someone with almost forty goals last season he's been a disappointment.

On the statistical front cannot remember the last time an Islander scored in the first ten seconds of a period unless were talking about Bryan Trottier scoring five seconds into a game against Boston long ago.

11/19/07

Prospects at the crossroads?

New York Islander Fan Central | 11/19/2007 09:56:00 AM
It's still a little early but there are signs from many of the Islanders prospects that they are simply not improving to a point where they are forcing management to give them a look and recall them and that's not good considering all the time and resouces that have been invested in them over several seasons. Steve Regier is making the best statistical impression outside of Tambellini who's play making skills seem to be improved but who will likely make the NHL for good based on his defense.

Fair or not I'm going by the numbers more than anything. If those who recall Trent Hunter finally was just called up and kept up, he seemed to do worse in the NHL when he was scoring in Bridgeport and better in the NHL when he was called up after struggling in Bridgeport.

In other words sometimes there is no logic.

Last year Ted Nolan did callup Jeremy Colliton, Blake Comeau, Frans Nielsen and Jeff Tambellini on several occasions. A year ago Ted Nolan felt Comeau would absoutely be an NHL player, now he's a negative rating player and he's not producing.

This year with the injury to Jon Sim, Bill Guerin, Bergenheim and Shawn Bates situtation we have seen one callup with any offensive ability and that's Ben Walter who briefly played on the fourth line outside of one quick cameo from Jeff Tambellini. Tim Jackman and Darryl Bootland have been given the opportunities over the prsopects the club has invested years in.

Meanwhile in terms of the numbers, Colliton, Comeau, Nielsen are not producing much in terms of goals. Tambellini has been in somewhat of a slump recently and the Islanders second round pick on defense in Dustin Kohn has been scratched on a few occasions.

When you include the slump Kyle Okposo has been in since he lost a winger on his line (he scored in a loss over the weekend) it's fair to ask the question is the club's youth movement at the crossroads?

Next season with so many pending free agents again for the Islanders these players have to step up and give management reason to think they are part of the long-term answer.

Garth Snow is going to need his first round pick next summer too.

11/19: New York at Rangers 7pm FSN-MSG

New York Islander Fan Central | 11/19/2007 06:10:00 AM
Islanders Website/AP: Has tonight's early preview for tonight's game against the Rangers at Msg.

NYI Fan Central Comments:
Rangers trap is doing a great job protecting the goaltender and their defenders scored all four goals in the previous game. Islanders offense is having problems finishing, but always put on a very strong showing at Msg.

Botttom line Islanders have to make the Rangers defense work harder in their own end and get some quality shots. Their trap is set to allow low percentage shots. On the defensive end Islanders have been outstanding in the recent games outside of one Brendan Witt turnover. Islanders are also going to have to take the puck at their net and force them into some penalties and then the pp has to generate some goals.

Ted Nolan usually outcoaches Tom Renney in these games and in that department he should have a good game plan ready.

Islander News Articles 11/19

New York Islander Fan Central | 11/19/2007 05:55:00 AM
Newsday: Greg Logan's article is about the Islanders offensive struggles with only seven goals in the last four games, the defensive style the club is playing and the shifting of Guerin and Hunter.

"Billy and Silly are so old, they want to split those two guys up. No, it's one of those things where I think Teddy tries to keep things fresh. Billy and Trent are interchangeable because of the shots they have. We all need to start scoring more. It takes pressure off everyone if everybody chips in."

Newsday: Greg Logan's blog is about how Ted Nolan did not like Sean Bergenheim's game Friday and put Richard Park in his spot, but is very happy with his overall game. A very fair question is also asked about why not switch Park with Andy Hilbert who to date does not have a single goal and what could happen when Shawn Bates returns later this week.

“Andy Hilbert seemed to get a little bit better last game. One thing we never want to do is give up on people. You let them ride through it, and you show confidence in them.

“Hopefully, Andy will get his game going and play the way he’s capable of playing. We don’t expect him to score hat tricks for us, but we expect him to play sound defensively, be a force on the forecheck for us and create opportunities for his linemates, which he’s done very successfully so far.”


NYI Fan Central Comments:
Seems like Park is the best scoring alternative on the third line since Jon Sim is out for the season. Were getting close to twenty games and no goals for Andy Hilbert regardless of his defensive game means time has to be running out on a team that has too many players not scoring, specifically Mike Sillinger who has been Hilbert's center.

11/18/07

Newsday endorses Lighthouse Project

New York Islander Fan Central | 11/18/2007 06:34:00 PM
Newsday's Opinion Page: Endorsed the Lighthouse project and does a very good job breaking down the details about the project, what it means if it does not happen and gives a solid overview of the concerns for the people living in the area.

NYI Fan Central Comments:
Article in some detail discusses the driving concerns for the folks in the area and where Wang, Rechler and most importantly Tom Suozzi come into play here in terms of what has to be done in terms of infrastructure which is where Nassau will have to use it's resources.

Let's see someone step up who's against the project be given the same space in Newsday and tell the public why. The days of the politics and special interest that want to keep things the same and do not want to talk about anything unless it serves them has to end.

NHL releases preliminary draft rankings

New York Islander Fan Central | 11/18/2007 05:41:00 PM
Tsn.ca: The NHL released it's preliminary draft rankings with Sarnia Sting forward Steven Stamkos, Quebec Remparts winger Mikhail Stephanovich, and Everett Silvertips centre Kyle Beach leading each of their respective league lists in the Canadian Hockey League.

Tsn.ca: Has has the rankings from Central Scouting by country for each player.

Sunday Islander/NHL notables

New York Islander Fan Central | 11/18/2007 01:37:00 PM
Star Tribune: Michael Russo reports Sean Hill's suspension is over and will make his debut with the Minnesota Wild.

"I'm as ready as I can be," said Hill, a Duluth native who denies he used steroids last season while playing for the Islanders. "Obviously there are times when I'm a bit rusty, and maybe my timing won't be where it should be, but I think we've done everything we can as far as preparing, and the rest of the stuff's going to come the more I play."



Buffalo News: Bucky Gleason credits Garth Snow as having done a very good job when talking about Brett Hull coming in as a novice to the interim gm role who will not do the job in tandem with Les Jackson.

Hull could wind up being precisely what the Stars need. People snickered — guilty! — when backup goalie Garth Snow suddenly became the New York Islanders’ general manager, but he’s done a very good job.

TSN's Mike Milbury called Hull's appointment an insult to all NHL gm's in Globe and Mail

NYI Fan Central Comments:
Milbury's comments make no sense here to me. Snow has a business background but in terms of knowing the league and the players it's hard to see any difference between Snow and Hull who both have long experience unless this is about how hard Hull lobbied for his contracts which is his right. Snow and Hull were both very outspoken as players as was Mike Milbury.

Toronto Sun: Lance Hornsby points to the Islanders hiring Garth Snow as an example of a direction Toronto could go in if they make a change and bring in a former player with no experience.

If MLSEL looks close to home, it has old-school assistant GM Mike Penny and newcomers Jeff Jackson and Doug Gilmour. Hey, experience meant nothing when the New York Islanders fast-tracked Garth Snow, who brushed off the mockingbirds, made the playoffs and remains neck and neck with Ferguson's Leafs.

NYI Fan Central Comments:
When you lose a playoff spot to a team the final week and only lead them by one point with five more games played, it's advantage Islanders. Especially with the no movement clauses Toronto has locked in with a Bryan McCabe and far less cap space.

Halifax Daily News: Pat Connolly in a sports column that mentions hockey give the nod to Ted Nolan for the best NHL coaching job over the first two months of the season with Claude Julien of the Boston Bruins.

11/17/07

Islander News Articles 11/18:

New York Islander Fan Central | 11/17/2007 10:51:00 PM
Newsday: Greg Logan's Sunday article is about the change in leadership since last season and what Bill Guerin brings to the locker room. He writes people from one end of the organization to the other credit the subtraction of Yashin and the addition of Guerin for creating a new sense of togetherness and purpose.

"He's been great in our locker room," said enforcer Chris Simon, who is close to Nolan and understands better than anyone what kind of leadership is required to play the coach's style. "Billy's play speaks for itself," Simon said. "He plays in the hard areas. He's not a perimeter player. When a guy plays the way he does and carries himself the way he does, everybody listens from young guys to older guys. That's a real good thing."

"The biggest thing to me was the chemistry and the camaraderie on the team, making sure everybody wanted to be there and wanted to be a part of the Islanders," Guerin said Saturday. "I think we have that. We've got a great group of guys. We support each other, and we're trying to make it like a family.

Asked what needed to change, Guerin answered quickly. "It's just a feeling," he said. "There's more a sense of unity this year than there was last year. There's not 17 guys on one page, two guys on one and one on another. Everybody's on the same page."


NYI Fan Central Comments:
No direct quote from anyone regarding Alexi Yashin which is unfair if Logan is going to make such a claim on a team with so many new faces.

No doubt Guerin is a huge positive in the locker room but Guerin himself said it's what you do on the ice, the rest is just words.

Simon's comments are interesting but Guerin has been almost entirely a perimeter player all season who's offensive contribution has been one game Olaf Kolzig struggled where he took a lazy shot from long distance on a five on three that squeaked through. His only goal in front of the net was against Kevin Weekes in overtime on another players hard work. To this point Yashin's season a year ago has been better on the ice than Guerin's.

Alexei Yashin's Islanders made four of the last five playoffs, only he knows how much he wanted to be captain or what he failed to do in the job behind the scenes but it's fair to say Yashin did not have anyone like a Comrie, Guerin to work with either and he's scapegoated for not be supported. He also has to be given credit for a good statistical year from Blake, Simon and especially Viktor Kozlov.

As Blake said himself when he signed in Toronto, Yashin was expected to perform miracles. Kozlov praised Yashin when he signed in Washington also.

Let's not pull punches here either, Yashin was not good with the media and that's not going to win him points with someone who's on a deadline and needs material.

Guerin's grade as captain comes down to the club's record, not how players get along off the ice.

Newsday: Greg Logan also did a second feature on Josef Vasicek who leads the NHL in shooting percentage.

Ct Post: Michael Fornabaio's blog has comments from Bates about his first game and the loss against Hershey.

Ct Post: Michael Fornabaio's article in the paper.

Bridgeport 6, Hershey 3

New York Islander Fan Central | 11/17/2007 09:19:00 PM

AHL.com: Has the game report on Bridgeport's 6-3 loss at Hershey on Saturday.

Shawn Bates scored a pp goal in the third peirod in his first game on his only shot.

Blake Comeau and Steve Regier also scored. Sound Tigers were outshot 27-10 over the final two periods and trailed entering the third. Kip Brennan got his money's worth and more in the fighting department. Bates also had a penalty.

Sound Tigers next game is Wednesday which again will be at Hershey.

2 - BRI Brennan, 3:07 - Roughing , 2 min (PP)
2 - BRI Brennan, 3:07 - Roughing , 2 min (PP)
2 - BRI Brennan, 3:07 - Misconduct - Unsportsmanlike Conduct (75.4), 10 min
3 - BRI Brennan, 1:53 - Roughing , 2 min
3 - BRI Brennan, 1:53 - Roughing , 2 min (PP)
3 - BRI Brennan, 14:52 - Roughing , 2 min (PP)
3 - BRI Brennan, 14:52 - Fighting , 5 min
3 - BRI Brennan, 14:52 - Game misconduct , 10 min

Hershey did not score on the powerplay in the game.

NYI Fan Central Comments:
Sound Tigers on paper should be better than their record to this point by a lot with the talent on that roster.

Saturday Islander/NHL Notables

New York Islander Fan Central | 11/17/2007 06:28:00 PM
NY Times: George Vecesy visited the Prudential Center in Newark for yesterday's Islander game to do a feature on access to the arena for local fans.

NYI Fan Central Comments:
Nice article, but no game coverage for two local teams where one player is going for five hundred wins? Not George Vecesy's fault but if the Times is attending why is the editor not allowing a game feature?

Canadian Press and countless articles: Report Anaheim goaltender Ilya Bryzgalov was claimed on waivers but the Phoenix Coyotes on Saturday.

The LA Times and several articles: Have the background on why Bryzgalov was put on waivers by Anaheim.

NYI Fan Central Comments:
I followed this a little concerned an Atlantic team (Pittsburgh) could take him and improve their goaltending. Have to respect Brian Burke for keeping his word but all he got was cap space for a solid goaltender who had a very strong playoff a few years ago and was on a cup winner last season. I'm glad he's staying in the Western Conference.

Sound Tigers Website: Has a preview of Saturday's game at Hershey.

So far Islander management made right calls

New York Islander Fan Central | 11/17/2007 08:58:00 AM
CBS Sportsline: Wes Goldstein had an article Friday listing his top ten bargains to date for free agents and busts from this summer's free agent class. Vasicek was fifth on the bargain list with Richard Zednik tenth. Jason Blake and Tom Poti made the bust list at ninth and tenth. Jeff Hamilton and Michael Peca made the bargain list.

NYI Fan Central Comments:
Looks like Garth Snow, Ted Nolan and the hockey committee made the right calls so far. Given Fedotenko's salary it's easy to omit him as a bargain but his impact on games are usually very visible. Goldstein's article does not get in right on Vasicek, who's line came to life starting with Bergenheim's placement on left wing and continued throught his injury.

Islanders were supposedly very interested in Eric Perrin in Atlanta who also made the list. Zednik's slow start cannot be ignored but he is producing for them now.
I saw Poti's giveaway for a goal against and to read about a groin injury makes me think Islanders knew what they were doing considering the Caps struggles and his contract and the same can be said of Kozlov.

Fair to say the jury should still be out on Comrie and Guerin because they are paid to be first line players, but overall the Islanders record at this point says they made the right decisions. Still both players have to get their numbers for this to work over eighty two games.

11/16/07

Islander News Articles 11/17:

New York Islander Fan Central | 11/16/2007 11:32:00 PM























Newsday: Greg Logan has comments from the players and coach Ted Nolan on Rick DiPietro's play and the team effort in Friday's win against the Devils.

"Not only did he block the shots, but he handled the puck very smartly tonight. He didn't just shoot the puck around the boards and try to make long passes. He made some long passes, but there was a lot of thought. He made some great plays for us."

"I think it's just age; he's coming into his own," defenseman Brendan Witt said of DiPietro. "As a young goalie, there's so many expectations. Last year didn't help because the media was blowing out his whole deal. This year, he knows the type of player he is, and he expects a lot of himself.

"As defensemen, we don't want him to stop everything. We want him to play within himself and not try to stop every kind of shot available. He's very confident and mentally strong. Last year, if a weak one got in, he'd be really upset. Now, he just parks it and goes forward and doesn't dwell on it, which is great."


NYI Fan Central Comments:
DiPietro gets a 1-0 win and part of the story from the primary beat writer is to mention his ego as a storyline? How about his record against Brodeur.

Cannot think of anything last year where DiPietro showed any ego so not sure why Logan brought that up from a goalie who's performance was not hyped by Newsday's beat writer as one of the best in the NHL last season who faced more shots per game than any other NHL goaltender and proved he is a franchise goaltender in this league.

Daily News: Peter Botte covered the game.

"It's not a thing you ever expect. ... Fortunately I was in the right place at the right time," Vasicek said. "I knew I had all the time. I just tried to get (Brodeur) moving, and wait him out."


NY Post: Mark Everson writes one article for both teams game coverage.

Newark Star Ledger & North Jersey/Bergen Record: Tom Gulitti has the Devils coverage.

Ct Post: Michael Fornabaio's Saturday article is on Ryan Kinasewich who is up on a tryout contract from Utah.

Bridgeport Sound Tigers at Hershey Bears
WHEN — Tonight, 7
WHERE — Giant Center, Hershey, Pa.
ON THE AIR — WAVZ-AM 1300; Webcast and B2 Networks Internet pay-per-view at www.soundtigers.com

Mark Wotton-Expected to rejoin team.
Shawn Bates-Expected to play.

New York 1, New Jersey 0

New York Islander Fan Central | 11/16/2007 09:28:00 PM





















Islanders website: Has the recap of tonight's 1-0 Islanders win against New Jersey.

"These are the games we want to play tight and smart," said DiPietro. "And tonight we played a good game. We limited our mistakes and came out on top. You hope every year you get better and better and things come easier. I feel I'm taking strides in the right direction and I hope it continues."

"I thought he played a real solid game," said head coach Ted Nolan about his goaltender. "Not just the way stopped and blocked shots, but also the way he handled the puck."



NYI Fan Central Comments:
This might have been the worst NHL game I have watched all season, even with so many teams trapping. Maybe it was the ice but both teams were very sloppy and so much center ice play.

Devils seemed all night to be looking for that home run pass for an odd man rush. Islanders defense was outstanding and blocked the lanes and did enough to force the Devils to bad angles.

Worst effort offensively out of all three games but when you win, everyone is happy so you take the points and move on. I cannot remember the last time anyone had the time Vasicek had to make all those moves, it was like a practice drill where it hit the shaft of Brodeur's stick, rolled up, over and in.

In terms of defense the Islanders should be very happy considering it was three games in four days. They got in the lanes and blocked enough chances or the Devils simply missed the net. DiPietro was locked in and did not give anything in terms of rebounds which he did do against Philadelphia.

This was a very ugly game, a good road win from an offense that is struggling to create chances and really did not force Brodeur to be very good. Hunter was dominating at times, some good individual play but nothing to create a great chance.

On the other end DiPietro did not have to make one great save. Devils have too much talent to play this poorly, even without Colin White and Langenbrunner. Brent Sutter
should be under some pressure here because he has too good a roster on offense.

From an Islander standpoint you win ugly it counts just the same and credit the goaltender and defense. A lot of standout performances on the backline.

NYI Fan Central Live Blogging vs Devils.

New York Islander Fan Central | 11/16/2007 06:32:00 PM









NYI FAN Central will get a piece of the rock and do a live blog tonight during the game from my blog box:

Live updates begin at 7:10pm when the puck drops:
No Paul Martin for Devils.
Guerin goes back with Fedotenko and Comrie, Hunter back to Sillinger line with Hilbert, Park will center fourth line with Jackman and Simon.

Elias moves to center, Asham starts game on fourth line left wing.

Brodeur vs DiPietro
****************************************************
First Period:

* Devils quick icing.
* Guerin finds Fedotenko for two side angle shots, stopped by Brodeur, good opening shift.
* Hunter went for centering pass had lane to net.
* Martinek good block of odd man rush.
* Save DiPietro on backhand shot, first whistle.

* Parise long shot, save DiPietro, no screen.
* Campoli point shot off Bergenheim pass, save Brodeur, good screen.
* Good tie up by Campoli on centering pass by Devils, icing Islanders.
* Giveaway by Devils, Jackman gave it right back.
* Clarkson vs Jackman fight-Decision Clarkson who got in a punch or two with free arm and take down.

* Pelley second good setup, Guerin shot wide, choppy play. Martink shot blocked.
* Hilbert soft shot stopped from bad angle.
* Gionta shot tipped over net.
* Bad angle shot by Satan stopped and held by Brodeur.
* Eleven minutes left in 1st.

* Park gets shift in Bergenheim's spot. Gionta good shot, Devils second good chance stopped by DiPietro.
* Comrie line some pressure, no shot.
* Parise wrap-around stopped that hits post, Devils picking up play and skating, offsides.
* 8:10 left in first.

* Guerin poor angle shot, rebounds hits Comrie for a much tougher second save.
* Jackman good forecheck but no shot.
* Zubrus shot off DiPietro glove goes wide, Hunter shot misses.
* Vasicek offsides.
* 5:12 left first.

* Devils breakup Satan rush, no sustained offense by Islanders. Devils shot blocked by Islanders defense, out of play.

* Guerin shot blocked.
* Sloppy offense zone passing by Islanders, Brookbank shot wide, DiPietro save on Brookbank.

* Elias wrap around stopped by DiPietro.

* Point shot by Devils off faceoff, stopped by DiPietro, Martinek penalty, Islanders shorthanded.

* Save Dipietro, Park loses stick, shooting gallery for Devils with all shots missing net as they had Park (no stick) and Sillnger running around and pressure for entire two minutes, Witt (with Park's stick) Sutton hold ground. Two saves by DiPietro.

* Islanders chance at end as Brodeur is hit, coincidental penalties as period ends.

Devils better pressure but neither goalie tested much. Islanders struggling to create and a very predictable offense against a beatable defense.
Shots 7-7
Witt: over eight minutes
****************************************
Second Period:

* Teams start four on four Comrie-Johnny Oduya penalty

* Lot's of center ice sloppy play both sides.
* Comrie good shot off broken play from Guerin pass out of box, save Brodeur.
* Sutton hits post from outside on Devil turnover.
+ Save DiPietro throught screen.
* Simon shot blocked, ran forward and clipped him for a foolish offensive zone penalty.

* Devils turnover shorthanded, Vasicek with all day and a backhand that took forever to float over Brodeur for a goal 1-0 New York. Mike Mottau lost puck or blew tire in hockey terms.

* Devils pp continues, Brookbank shot, save DiPietro.
* PP over, Guerin long shot off Comrie pass, save Brodeur.
* Berard bodies Parise off puck.
* More sloppy play both sides, Devils cycling.
* Gionta good shot, save DiPietro from faceoff circle, puck bouncing a lot.
* Islanders three on one could not get shot through without being blocked.
* Very choppy play both sides.

* Chicken Dance, lot's of Islander fans.

* Following the bouncing puck 9:25 left in second.
* Park wrap around on fourth line, save Brodeur.

* More center ice play, Satan line good pressure, but no shot. Berard shot, blocker save. Gervais angle shot.
* Good pressure by Comrie line, save on poor angle shot by Guerin, Fedotenko pulled down, Pelley penalty, Islander pp.

* Hunter shot from circle, save Brodeur.
* Hunter hits post from circle.
* Campoli save, Brodeur.
* Hunter shot through crease.
* Satan to Campoli to Hunter, Berard to Hinter, Campoli shot saved by Brodeur...clear.
* Comrie get's through defense, no shot, cleared.
* Penalty over.
* Pelley angle shot, save DiPietro whistle.

* Islanders shot through screen, good pressure by Vasicek line.
* 3 minutes left.
* Parise soft shot saved by DiPietro.

* Sutton got picked by official but recovered in his end of ice and Zubrus lost puck.
* Berard reads centering pass well, icing.
* Devils point shot hits Jay Pandolfo, play stops.

* Parise shot, save DiPietro, final minute.
* Parise shot wide, Devils skating hard.
* Islanders offsides.
* Devils good rush at DiPietro by Gionta, save on centering pass on point shot.
* End of second period 11-9 shots.
* 1-0 New York

* Islanders could have had two or three, more dangerous chances that peirod, Devils finshed strong. Ice seems terrible because puck is bouncing like a rock.
***************************************************
Third Period:

* Cood opening shift by Comrie line, good pressure and wrap around save by Brodeur, Campoli pinched well.
* Devils shot wide by Elias.
* Save on Sillinger backhand, save on Hilbert chop at puck.
* Langenbrunner good pressure and shots off DiPietro from bad angles for redirections.
* Hand pass on Fedetenko/Comrie.

* Fedetenko good give and go with Berard off touch pass. Devils penalty.
* Centering pass blocked and cleared.
* Islanders cannot get over center ice with turnovers, sloppy play.
* Penalty over, two harmless shots.

* Devils off sides.
* 13:28 left in third.

* Devils juggling lines.
* Comrie goud chance, lost puck.
* More center ice play, both sides.
* Devils trying to step up play, good pressure.
* Islanders icing 10:46 left in third, Park takes shift with Vasieck line.

* Islanders defense slowed down Parise one-timer on block (Martinek) point shot off faceoff save DiPietro, Islanders icing.
* Center ice play, long shot save and held Brodeur.
* 9:27 left third.

* Clarkson long shot save DiPietro.
* Comrie pressure, Devils clear.
* Satan line cycle.
* Satan bad angle shot, save Brodeur.
* Parise line pressure, shot wide Elias.
* Nice save DiPietro on Elias point shot, heavy Devils pressure.

* Islanders clear, Zajac rush save DiPietro.
* Center ice play, hand pass New Jersey.

* Fedotenko shot blocked, cleared.
* Gionta set play, big save DiPietro.
* Parise shot missed as Devils broke in again.
* Elias rush in shot wide as he split defense as he was forced wide.
* Big Devils pressure again.
* Islander pressure, Hunter turnaround stopped by Brodeur. Jiggs mentions Tonelli like play as Hunter just bulls puck along board.
* Madden bomb stopped and held by DiPietro
* 3:33 left in third....

* Video review-Hunter wrap around. A call from Toronto?
* NEVER. But it looked inconclusive.

* Hunter more hard work and a shot stopped and held by Brodeur.
* Langenbrunner shot, Islanders clear.
* Vasicek clear.
* 2:35 left
* Devils sloppy in center ice.
* Guerin clear 1:50 left.
* Gionta wide, Brodeur out, Devils shot off post.
* Islanders clear
* Play stops puck off Devil 45 second left.

* Time out New York
* Brodeur on bench faceoff outside Islanders zone.
* Islanders clear
* Devils dump in
* Hunter clear...no icing.
* Devils dump in, DiPietro around the boards..


1-0 ISLANDERS WIN........Pass the oxygen.

NYI Fan Central Voting for All Star Team

New York Islander Fan Central | 11/16/2007 04:32:00 PM













NHL.com: Has it's link up to vote for the NHL All-Star game and I thought I would share who I voted for and talk about how strange the voting process is.

The good news is you can vote for any player without doing a write in.

The bad news is the primary list of players had some of the strangest choices, many who had poor seasons. Why they simply could not have listed every player at the top when they have that option anyway at the bottom to me makes no sense.

I voted based on the top part of the list and did not see you could write in any twelve players you wanted until after I was done.

You have players like Bryan McCabe on the primary defenders list, players like Scott Gomez and his thirteen goals last year on the list. I don't know if it's based on last year or this year because many players were not very good either year on their primary list.

You have to select twelve player to vote for, three forwards, two defenders, one goaltender. Six from each conference and if you are a Buffalo Sabres fan who wants to vote the entire team in and have that kind of free time, you can spam the vote.

Yes, this goes for those Rory Fitzpatrick fans out there too.

I voted not knowing you could write in any twelve players at the bottom. Given the poor choice of primary players there was no set logic in my voting and some Islander bias here and I did look at last season a lot.

1-Jason Blake based on his forty goals last season with the Islanders, without his production the Islanders do not make the playoffs.

2-Bill Guerin because he had thirty six goals last year on two teams and even though he is not scoring often is the leader of a winning team many felt would be in last at this point.

3-Sidney Crosby because of his age and production and Pittsburgh's record last year.

4-Ryan Whitney of Pittsburgh because he deserved it far more for his club's success than McCabe, Chara or Kaberle who's teams were terrible on defense last year.

5-Dan Boyle because of the outstanding year he had with Tampa Bay and because of how he did well on a club geared toward offense.

6-Rick DiPietro because he had a 9.19 save percentage on a team that gave up more shots per game than any other NHL team a year ago. Without him last year this team is in the NHL lottery. This team was also minus ninety in pp to penalty disparity and still finished ten games over five hundred. He was a dominating shootout goaltender for the most part. And does not have the trap other teams play with protecting him.

After I voted I discovered you could include anyone I would have pulled Dan Boyle and put in Brendan Witt, he was fantastic last season, has been again this year and deserved to be in.

Western Conference:
I do not watch the West like I used to and voted more on reputation in some cases and in others on individual results based on last season.

1-Joe Thornton
2-Pavel Datsyuk
3-Ryan Getzlaf-Best of an outstanding young group last year.
4-Nicklas Lidstrom
5-Dion Phaneuf-Would have been Pronger if playing.
6-Mikka Kiprusoff-Team did not trap like Luongo's Canucks.

Thoughts? Your choices?

11/16: New York at New Jersey 7pm FSN/MSG

New York Islander Fan Central | 11/16/2007 01:35:00 AM


Islanders Website/AP: Has the early preview of the Islanders first visit to Newark and the New Prudential Center.

NYI Fan Central Comments:
The Islanders are playing their third game in four nights against a team that must be furious and ready to play their most desperate hockey of the season to date after losing to the Rangers in their new building. You have Martin Brodeur who credited everyone but the Islanders for their win last Saturday trying to get his five hundreth win at home and you have Jamie Langenbrunner back in the lineup for the Devils who scored two goals in his first game.

Meanwhile you have a very predictable Islander offense that is getting most of it's scoring from Vasicek who just matched his total from last season and Satan. Comrie tipped in a shot for a goal against Pittsburgh but the finish has not been there.

Either DiPietro steals a low scoring game or the Islanders breakout and their offense wins a game. Cannot go three games in this league with zero points accumulated. In the second half last year Islanders lost three games in regulation over twenty games. The words, the speeches sound great but it has to happen on the ice.

Islander News Articles 11/16:

New York Islander Fan Central | 11/16/2007 12:53:00 AM
Newsday: Greg Logan has player reaction on the 3-2 loss to Pittsburgh Thursday and complaints about the penalty disparity.

"These are four-point games," forward Mike Sillinger said. "We don't want to look back and say we played a good game, but we lost. We've got to find a way to win these one-goal games, and I think a big part of it is executing on the power play."

"We made some mistakes," DiPietro said of the turnovers. "I don't think that was our best effort."

"Sean Bergenheim bumps their goaltender and they [get a power play], and Crosby bumps ours [and gets no call]," coach Ted Nolan said. "I don't know what the difference is. We've just got to live with it, but [eight penalties to four] is kind of lopsided."

Pittsburgh Post Gazette: Dave Molinary has the Pens centric coverage.

Pittsburgh Tribune Review: Rob Rossi has reaction from the Pens on breaking their losing streak.

Ct Post: Michael Fornabaio has a feature on Shawn Bates. Thursday he updated his blog with a practice report where Bates played left wing on a line here with Ben Walter and Steve Regier.

Everything feels good," Bates said after Thursday's practice at the Arena at Harbor Yard. "I'm feeling ready to go, ready to play a game."

"It's one thing to ride the bike. It's one thing to do what Garrett (Timms, the Islanders' trainer) has been doing with him," Capuano said. "It's another thing to play a hockey game. Conditioning is going to be a big thing for him."

"For anybody who hasn't played that long, it'll be a little tough," Capuano said. "His enthusiasm, his excitement, being ready to play, that's going to off-balance some of that rust."

Vancouver Province and countless articles: Report Brett Hull has been named to interim gm of the Dallas Stars. This article examines the trends which began with Garth Snow.

11/15/07

Pittsburgh 3, New York 2

New York Islander Fan Central | 11/15/2007 10:01:00 PM

Islanders website: Has the early update on tonight's 3-2 loss to the Pittsburgh Penguins.

"We didn't set-up well," said Bryan Berard about the power that went 0-for-2. "We squeezed our sticks too tight and we didn't get enough shots through. We were rushing too much."


NYI Fan Central Comments:
Did not create enough chances in Pittsburgh's end of the ice or work them enough in the corners. This is another game you have to take into overtime and get some kind of points in and it can snowball which is why the Flyer loss was important. They are getting some scoring from unexpected sources like Vasicek, but they need a lot more from this lineup.

Pittsburgh looked like a team waiting to lose this game in the third period and have been struggling so badly Mark Recchi and Darryl Sydor were healthy scratches.

Power play at the end looked totally lost and Pittsburgh almost gave them a great chance in the final seconds and if Fedntenko passes back to Park it's a tie game going to ot. Give up a two man power play to Pittsburgh and they will score, even if DiPietro should have had his post better on the play.

Too many turnovers from the defense, the one that led to Laraque's goal was a killer by Witt. Sutton did a solid job again.

Another expensive night with three teams in the division getting a least a point, about three of four things could easily have happened and I would be writing about at least one point. Park getting robbed, Hunter's post shot.

At times the Islanders have played better in the two losses then in some wins, it's not a lack of working hard.

11/15: New York at Pittsburgh 7:30 pm FSN

New York Islander Fan Central | 11/15/2007 05:02:00 AM
Media Blog: Cory Witt reports Jiggs McDonald will return to the broadcast booth for the next two games. Butch Goring is the expected replacement for Billy Jaffe on the commentary who's wife is expecting at any time.

Al Arbour will not be coaching this one.

Islanders website/AP: Has the early preview of tonight's game at Pittsburgh where the Pens go in on a four game losing streak.

"It's easy to look at the way things have gone the last few games and be critical and be negative, but we probably played our best game in the last few (against New Jersey)," said Crosby, who extended his point streak to 17 games. "We deserved to win, but it didn't happen."


NYI Fan Central Comments:
A team on a four game losing streak on home ice with a very strong offense and two franchise offensive players is not a good matchup for the Islanders because they will be desperate here. New York will as always have to play the game in Pittsburgh's end of the ice and work their defense in the corners as they put pressure and shots on their goaltender. Last game for their two goals Islanders worked hard but had a lot of shots blocked and gave little in terms of offense, tonight I expect DiPietro to be tested a lot more.

Still no word on what the story with the defense will be in terms of Bergeron, Berard or both. I expect Guerin to return based on his comments. Park is likely going to center the fourth line but will likely move around based on how well he has played.

Islander News Articles 11/15:

New York Islander Fan Central | 11/15/2007 04:05:00 AM
Erik Boland: Has an update on Bill Guerin for Thursday's game against Pittsburgh who will wear a protective visor while Ted Nolan talks about the captain's value to the club.

"Something fluky like this is tough because other than that you feel great," Guerin said. "It's not like a wrist or arm or a leg, or something like that where you know you can't skate. Physically you feel fine, it's just this fluke incident that you're missing time for."

"It could have been much worse."

"Just his presence," Nolan said. "His mannerisms, the way he talks to his teammates before the game, the way he gets ready on the bench, the respect factor he has. All the intangibles. He's one of those guys you can get by without for a game or two but more than that, it's tough. We're glad he's back."


In terms of Lighthouse Project reaction in Newsday:
Chris Mascaro & Edin Laikin had positive and negative comments from residents and civic leaders with concerns and praise for the project. Peter KIng: Does on article on how Mr Wang decided on this concept when he visited NHL arena's a few years ago.

Pittsburgh Tribune Review & Pittsburgh Post Gazette: Have the Pens coverage which centered around Kris Letang joining the club to give them the right handed shot they need from the point and struggling Marc Andre Fleury getting the start against the Islanders. DiPietro is quoted about the ten pounds he lost helping his legs as the season progresses. Former Penguin Richard Park had a few words about how dangerous Pittsburgh's powerplay is. Former Sound Tiger Alain Nasreddine cleared waivers and was sent the to Pens AHL team in Scranton.

Ct Post: Michael Fornabaio notes Walter and Bates going to Bridgeport and why Bates can only stay with the Sound Tigers until around Thanksgiving. As usual he's well ahead of the New York papers and has the Pens stories on LeTang and Nasreddine.

Ct Post: Listed the Sound Tigers individual player statistics.

11/14/07

WE'RE ALL ISLANDERS ?

New York Islander Fan Central | 11/14/2007 07:19:00 PM
As a fan who owned a mailing list, moderated a message board I always used to laugh to myself at the people posting and wrote we when talking about their team as if they had some kind of personal stake in it.

I have kind of come around on that and feel that way myself at times now, but not to a point where I'm going to protect the New York Islanders at all cost, right or wrong.

It's kind of funny when you see a hockey incident where two teams have several fan sites and long time fans of the team wrap themselves up in the teams flag regardless of who is right or wrong as they rip the other side.

It's also clear a few of these fan sites may have their living depend on protecting the team that gives them insider access and sure do seem to react to protecting the sweater as if they are part of that team, in other words, we.

Even worse is now the long time fans of the team employed by newspapers also have no problem protecting the team and lock room beat they are assigned when the pressure is on from outsiders. It almost comes off like an obligation when you see some people doing backflips to get out Sean Avery's message.

Once in a while they will rip an unpopular player in the room who's a target of the fans but for the most part they make sure they do not become a problem because it could effect their job. And something that an old book called Ball Four by Jim Bouton has always been right about is your as smart or dumb as how well you are playing.

Larry Brooks ripped Brendan Shanahan a while back, a few days later he did a public retraction as if he knew it would hurt his personal working relationship with Shanahan and led to other players tuning out Brooks. Either that or the Rangers p.r people called the Post sports editor and Brooks was called on the carpet.

Many of these people are life long fans and even thought they are passionate and critical it's another thing when outside media from other teams rip their team. It's one thing for the local writer to rip a team or a player, it's another thing entirely when a writer for the opposing team does it.

As Otter said in Animal House " He can't do that to our pledges, only we can do that to our pledges."

It's kind of sad because in the end it's like a bunch of politicians lobbying for their party now. No wonder Msg pays so much to own all Islander, Devil and Sabre content on their network.

This does not even bring into play the life-long fans of these teams or former players with ties to the organization currently working in the media for outlet's like Tsn.ca/Espn or any other hockey news information source. Most of these folks are former players and coaches with life-long bonds to organization's and possible future jobs back in hockey are in the balance.

Of course the Islanders do not have this problem because they have virtually no
die-hard fans representing them in the media business which is why the proverbial glass will always be half empty win or lose. When the next Tucker-Peca incident happens that's why you can read out of Toronto Peca jumped into Tucker's clean hit and the person at Newsday will be too busy telling the fans about the Islanders trying to remain viable to even bother taking a stance because they have no passion for the team beyond filing their story.

When Evan Grossman put himself on the hook and wrote the Islanders would beat Ottawa in the playoffs he was blasted in Canada, why bother?

If there are any fans with private web sites they are outnumbered and do not want to become a target by themselves and take on the masses who are backed by teams or correctly do not want to stick up for the club when it is wrong which I personally think is the correct choice. You have to give the organization praise when it's merited and be critical when you need to be or why bother unless you are a paid employee.

As I have written previously we have a writer or two at Newsday who's job is essentially a paycheck and an assigment and the job requirement is not for a
die-hard fan. If an incident takes place they will tell the Islanders side of things while the shock jocks at the paper like a Jim Baumbach or a Mark Herrmann will come in and remind us the Islanders are just not a major player on the New York sports stage or just make sure some negative angle is a major theme of what they write.

It's kind of like the Chris Simon incident last year, as fans we had to read about Simon and what he did wrong and most of it was fair and accurate. That said when Ranger sites or writers tell us about Chris Simon they forget to include his suspensions and stick swinging incidents when he wore their laundry a few years ago or how he beat up Dave Scatchard who was playing in a shoulder harness.

And sure you can go back as far as when Cairns wore a Ranger jersey and Rich Pilon an Islander jersey. The laundry changes, the spin for the laundry does not.

What I'm getting at is can some of these sites and writers tone it down and not lobby around their own team every single time, right or wrong? Are they under so much pressure and so biased it's not possible as if they feel they must influence public opinion?

Ben Walter, Bates to Bridgeport & 10,000

New York Islander Fan Central | 11/14/2007 04:36:00 PM
Ct Post: Michael Fornabaio updated his blog Wednesday and reports Ben Walter and Shawn Bates should be joining the Sound Tigers at practice Thursday. Bates will be with the club until around Thanksgiving on a conditioning stint.

NYI Fan Central Comments:
I guess this means Guerin returns to the lineup against Pittsburgh and a decision on
whether the Islanders dress seven defenders with Berard's return or Jackman sits down. Still no word on where Freddy Meyer is going to play. It will be interesting to see what happenes with Bates when his conditioning stint ends.

Updated 7:30pm
Point Blank: Chris Botta updated his blog and confirmed Guerin went to Pittsburgh and his playing status will be determined after the morning skate along with Walter and Bates going to Bridgeport.

USHL.com: Finally released it's fan Q & A with Islander prospect Blake Kessel today.

New England Hockey Journal: Matt Kalman has an update on Petteri Nokelainen now that he is healthy and getting an opportunity with the Bruins.

FastHockey: Announced Pat LaFontaine has joined its Strategic Advisory Board. This company claims to be the Web’s leading resource for amateur hockey content and player recruiting and lists several major NHL figures as part of this company including former Islanders Marty McInnis, Ray Ferraro, Scott LaChance, Ted Crowley.

Took a little look at the page counter today folks, 10,000 page views for New York Islander Fan Central, thanks so much for the great support.

I added a feature today asking for feedback about what you like about this site and put in a spot if you think the site needs more work. Anything specific please send an email with comments and suggestions as always.

Major Nassau Coliseum Update

New York Islander Fan Central | 11/14/2007 02:45:00 PM


So much for an off day. The news surrounding the Coliseum project is critical news to the teams future and must be covered here. Newsday sees it as such also with more coverage than any game or event this hockey season.

Greg Logan's article: Describes the renovation plans, has comment from Rick DiPietro about the project but asks Charles Wang what's the future of the Islanders if this plan is not approved.

"Everyone asks me that question," Wang said when asked recently if there is a point at which he would have to move or sell the team. "I've been here on Long Island for 55 years. I don't want to go anywhere else.

"Yes, there is a point. But the last thing I want is for anything to be construed as a threat. If I wanted to, I could have made threats a long time ago. We've got to get it done. Lou Lamoriello got it done in New Jersey, and Bruce Ratner is getting it done in Brooklyn. We've never been this close before."

"If we can't get this done, we've got big problems on Long Island," Wang said. "It's going to be the crown jewel."


Mark Herrmann : After thirty plus years and four championships still questions if Long Island can house a professional sports team and if it's worth spending the money on such a project given what Wang loses per year running the franchise? He also has a long history of the companies that used to operate and generate big money for the region. For some reason Herrmann brings Ranger fans into this discussion

NYI Fan Central Comments:
Mr Herrmann forget's without the tax exemptions MSG was given in the early 80's along with low cost electricity they still receive the Rangers would have moved to New Jersey and the Knicks to the Coliseum because the Garden was bleeding red ink and went throughout several ownerships and were not viable. I wonder if he would have written the same article about the Garden's viability in those days?

Business reporter Elizabeth Moore: Has comments on the presentation and more specifics with comments from gm Garth Snow and Bill Guerin.

Elizabeth Moore: Did a second article on some of the failed history and Al D'Amato's involvement and does an article on the developers and the community concerns here.

Daniel Wagner: Has an article on the history of bad deals regarding the concessions and lease that have created the problems over the years along with some construction details as to what a renovated Coliseum and the site would be comparable with.

NYI Fan Central Comments:
Great plans, but the same old story.

The Republican machine that made problems for the Coliseum since the day it opened and gave Smg that lease along with some democrats see that land as their own for what they want and will never give it up to Charles Wang or Scott Rechler because they make no money from it. They prefer nothing ever be built than to surrender that land. I'm not sure what Wang will do with the club because he is bound by the lease until 2015 regardless but the Town of Hempstead, Smg are all about what's in it for them and perfer things stay as they are then forfeit their plans for that property which does not include the Coliseum or a hockey team.

You would hope the political climate that got the Devils, Mets, Yankees, Giants, Jets and Nets new homes would guarantee this project be approved but some Nassau County politicians have been fighting this forever and see it as their land for their personal business interests.

No doubt we will see negative reaction from the usual suspects soon enough.

Newsday: Greg Logan's blog update is on the Lighthouse project with more reaction from the players and coach Ted Nolan.

“A facility like Charles is attempting to build is fabulous,” said Nolan, who is in the second year of a three-year contract but hopes to remain with the Islanders and continue his efforts to revive the tradition of a four-time Stanley Cup franchise. “It’s something special for the fans here who went through good years and bad years and who see the team is starting to come back.

“I’ve seen videotapes and presentations of it. Even if it’s half of what I’ve seen on video, it’s going to be something spectacular.”

11/13/07

Ted Nolan state of the Islanders

New York Islander Fan Central | 11/13/2007 06:29:00 PM
Islanders website: Has an update from Ted Nolan on the state of the team where he praises players and updates the injury status of Berard and Guerin for the next game. He also makes comparisions to last year's team. Richard Park is singled out by the coach for his efforts.

"Last year the players didn't know me and I didn't know the players," said Ted. "We didn't know each other. We probably started building that trust halfway through the year. We built upon that at the start of this year with the strong leadership of Sillinger, Witt, Park and all the guys from last year. With new guys we brought in this year, the adjustment has been much quicker."

"We're happy with where we are now," said Nolan. "Guys are getting better and everyone is feeling more comfortable around with one another. We're on the right track to where we want to be."

Ct Post: Michael Fornabaio updates his blog today on the Sound Tigers.

Islander/NHL notables

New York Islander Fan Central | 11/13/2007 04:07:00 PM
Newsday: Greg Logan updated his blog with Mike Sillinger, Rick DiPietro, Chris Campoli and Ted Nolan commenting on what went wrong with the special teams in the loss. Some things in the newspaper are repeated on Berard returning if he's cleared to play.

Dallas Stars Website: Report GM Doug Amrstrong was fired today with a 7-7 record after making the playoffs four years in a row by owner Tom Hicks.

“As an owner I have to be responsible for one person in Hockey Operations and that is the General Manager of the team,” said Hicks. “I thought that the team needed a change in direction. I know that change can be healthy and it was my determination that this move needed to be made. I want the Dallas Stars to return to being one of the elite teams in the league.

“Doug has been a great member of this organization for 17 years and has been a big part of the success we have had here in Dallas, starting under Bob Gainey and winning seven division titles, two Presidents’ Trophies, making two consecutive Stanley Cup Finals appearances and winning the Stanley Cup in 1999. He has been our General Manager for the past five years, and we’ve been to the playoffs the past four seasons.”


NYI Fan Central Comments:
Hicks has always been a very tough owner to work for and now that he cannot overspend as he did in the past someone had to pay the price for a mediocre start and in this case the long-time GM pays the price instead of coach Dave Tippett. Hicks is the man who also runs the Texas Rangers and signed Alex Rodriguez to a two hundred fifty million dollar contract which he would up paying part of just to trade him.

The Star Paul Hunter did one of countless articles on the latest Sean Avery, Darcy Tucker disgrace with Leaf shockjock from FAN590 Howard Berger in the middle because a New York Ranger player supposedly told Berger, Avery made an insulting commment to former Islander Jason Blake about his medical condition which Tucker responded to which triggered a pre game warmup incident. Avery and Tucker have met with Colin Campbell to see if and fines or suspensions are issued.

NYI Fan Central Comments:
This league would be far better off without Avery, Tucker or Howard Berger's involvement in any way because all three are about drawing attention to themselves. Good thing it's hockey because it may be a story in Canada but here it's a non-story here unless someone needs another excuse to not cover hockey.

So much for that Hall of Fame event when this stupidity tarnishes it and hockey's images. Campbell wants to make long suspensions for violence and make statements he has to do the same with this kind of conduct. Issue suspensions and hold the coaches accountable for their players conduct. That's why bench clearing brawls ended and that's how they will eliminate this.

Let's see Avery get five games, Tom Renney get five games for instigating and Tucker and Paul Maurice get two games. And if someone on the Islanders are involved let them be suspened without pay.

That's how you stop this for good.

Updated 6pm:
Tsn.ca: Releases the typical polished Msg statement from Avery where everything is denied, the league let's both players off with fines.

Islander News Articles 11/13:

New York Islander Fan Central | 11/13/2007 12:07:00 PM
Newsday: Greg Logan has comment and player reaction on the club's loss to Philadelphia where the special teams were a reason given. Berard if cleared will return to the lineup Thursday.

"You hold a team to 17 shots in their own building, you can't be too disappointed," coach Ted Nolan said. "Their three goals all came on broken plays."

"There was no power in the power play," Nolan said. "You have to get shots through."

"We were not sharp on the power play," Sillinger said. "You have to take the shot when you have the shot. Every time we got to the middle of the ice, we threw the puck back to the corner. If there was one area where we lost the game, it was special teams."


Newsday: Logan's second article was an update on Bill Guerin, Bergenheim's return to the lineup, finding DiPietro some time to rest in the schedule and a few other items.

NYI Fan Central Comments:

Note-Of course after Dan Martin did his preview to ask about attendance he was not permitted to travel to Philadelphia for the Post. Why did they even bother with a preview?

Philadelphia Daily News & Phiadelphia Inquirer Phillyburbs.com Delco Times have the Flyer centric coverage.

Ct Post: Michael Fornabaio's article is on Sean Bentivoglio starting to score for the Sound Tigers.

11/12/07

Philadelphia 3, New York 2

New York Islander Fan Central | 11/12/2007 10:05:00 PM



Islanders Website: Has the recap of Monday's 3-2 loss to the Philadelphia Flyers.

NYI Fan Central Comments:
Tough way to lose a very winnable hockey game and the kind of game you want to come out of with at least an overtime point. Another game in Philadelphia where the Islanders simply could not finish enough and did not give up much but any kind of breakdown wound up in the net. Fedotenko a giveaway, Gervais makes contact with the skate of Upshall and he goes in and scores. Finally Vasicek falls or misplays the puck on the pp, Bergeron gets caught in the middle and DiPietro could not make a second save.

Park, Sillinger and Simon came through and made plays that led to goals or scored, they got the secondary scoring, but not the primary scoring from the top line. Too many blocked shots or missed chances and a game that for the most part was a good road game for the Islanders to play.

Philadelphia finished three Islander mistakes, it easily could have been four when Vasieck lost a puck in the second peirod.

Cannot complain because they out shot Philadelphia and outworked them in their own building and played a strong defensive game. Still it's a game you look back on later and think you gave away two points. Not sure Bergeron should get all the blame here on the game winning goal against but he likely will.

11/12: NYI Fan Central Update

New York Islander Fan Central | 11/12/2007 06:46:00 PM

As always my thanks to everyone who has visited, e-mailed or posted in the topics.

A few more small changes to the site were made for those interested.

* I have created a new e-mail account for the site. It is nyifancentral@yahoo.com for those wishing to contact me. I will still respond to the old one for those who have it but I have removed it from the site.

* I have finally been able to enhance the link to the message board for those who do not know we have a message board attached to this blog. Anyone interested in talking about the games or talking about their own Islander-NHL related topics feel free to join the free little low grade board.

* A new live scoreboard has been incorporated above the upcoming games so folks can come here to get the scores. The team pages are well updated with full stats.

* The Al Arbour tribute header keeps getting moved around. I finally found a home for it above the news articles.

* More tweaking of the news feeders are constantly being done.

* I did put in a Grizzlies section with the teams primary paper linked to a feeder for the person who asked. I also have the website and the ECHL site.

* Ct Post and TSN still do not have feeds so all I can do is put up a link to the article page. Mr Fornabaio's Soundin Off page does have a feeder link here.

Guerin out, Bergenheim in vs Flyers

New York Islander Fan Central | 11/12/2007 03:18:00 PM


Bill Smith looks sharp in the legends game this weekend. No picture of Butch Goring who also played.


Newsday: Greg Logan gives an update on Bill Guerin who did not travel with the club to Philadelphia because of an eye injury but could return against Pittsburgh. Sean Bergenheim returns to the second line left wing position and Richard Park moves to right wing in Guerin's spot with Sillinger and Hilbert. Simon, Ben Walter and Tim Jackman make up the fourth line again. No mention is made of Berard or Meyer.

“Bergenheim is ready to go,” Nolan said. “His hands were a little rusty this morning, but that’s to be expected. I’d rather have some rusty hands than a rusty attitude. One thing about him is that he’s full of energy and he should add a little spark to us.”


Media Blog: Cory Witt reports Howie Rose will miss tonight's game. Steve Mears will call his first NHL game on television, with Chris King taking over play by play on the radio end. Butch Goring will move to the radio side to provide commentary.

NYI Fan Central Comments:
You keep Bill Guerin out until he's ready and do not risk a second injury to his eye, regardless of how long it takes. Good news is Comrie was not on that injury report because it did not look good Saturday and he's had shoulder problems in the past.

Interesting that Bergenheim who was played on right wing several times in preseason comes back from injury and get his second line left wing spot which is the right move to me because that's where he can help the most and his skill set in terms of offense is better than Richard Park. A third line of Hilbert, Sillinger and Park are likely not to do much damage but are due for a huge breakout and go in with some practice time. The work ethic will never be lacking from them.

Islanders need some offense from that fourth line tonight, Walter looks like he's very composed with good offensive instincts and Tim Jackman knows what to do when they are on the ice. Simon has the hands to convert some goals and is due, even though he's been spotted on the other lines and has seem a limited role.

NHL.com: Did not include Miroslav Satan and his two game winning goals in the top three for player of the week.

NHL.com: Long time Flyer writer Chuck Gormley does a full feature praising the Islanders for their excellent start with Paul Holmgrem credititing gm Garth Snow and notes the Islanders are the second least penalized team in the league at this time. Solid work all around here from Gormley.

“We're a resilient bunch,” said goaltender Rick DiPietro, who was tied for third in wins with eight entering this week’s divisional games against the Flyers, Penguins and Devils.

“This is a real good character kind of team that doesn't quit,” echoed Nolan.

“It’s pointless to analyze it,” Satan said. “I'm just glad to help the team.”

“I think Snowy did a great job over the summer,” Flyers General Manager Paul Holmgren said. “He picked up some players who were leaders and he’s got a very competitive team. And (Ted) Nolan has always been a good coach.”


NYI Fan Central Comments:
Part of the penalty story is the lack of games played but make no mistake this was a club that had a minus ninety disparity last season. It's a critical jump to be second, especially with the five on five numbers not nearly as good.

Put Butch Goring in Hockey Hall of Fame

New York Islander Fan Central | 11/12/2007 06:39:00 AM








NYI Fan Central Comments:
With all the talk of the Hall of Fame induction today for Scott Stevens for his three Stanley Cups with New Jersey combined with Al MacInnis, Ron Francis and Mark Messier being inducted combined with Butch Goring mentioning he was going to Toronto to play the legends game on Hall of Fame weekend the question has to be asked how can Butch Goring, who never goes a trade deadline without being mentioned as the all time standard for trades that bring championships combined with his career numbers not be in the Hockey Hall of Fame at this point?

This was a player who was a star forward with Los Angeles, his 1,107 NHL games netted him 375 goals and 888 points. Despite his aggressive play, Goring recorded only 102 penalty minutes in his NHL career. With the Los Angeles Kings in 1978, he became the only player ever to win the Lady Byng and Masterton Trophies in the same year.

Butch Goring came here and was not only a key part of four straight Stanley Cups which has not been matched in pro sports to this day but won the Conn Smyth for the 1981 playoffs. Every Islander who talks about those teams credits Goring as critical to their success. Goring scored 28 goals and 68 points in 99 playoff games with the Islanders, totals that include five playoff game-winners.

Meanwhile his banner does not even hang in the Coliseum rafters when even Pat Lafontaine had a ceremony and Bob Bourne was inducted into the club's new Hall of Fame last year?

This does not enter into any Hall of Fame discussion, however no Islander team worked harder with less talent than the team Butch Goring coached in his first season with the club. His dismissal was a joke considering Mike Milbury altered his club's first year chemistry.

Butch Goring went to Alaska and inherited a program with ownership problems, then
won a championship as a coach in Germany. He was a part of several Coliseum charity games in recent years and was at the clubs 25Th Stanley Cup anniversary.

Today he's still a great ambassador to the NHL and his insight into Islander telecasts finally had made that segment of the telecast of value to the broadcast for maybe the first time ever.

Meanwhile Butch Goring is as classy as ever, going up to Toronto to participate in the legends game during induction weekend.

Time for the selection committee to get together and make Robert “Butch” Goring a Hockey Hall of Famer, it's long overdue.

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