A few quick thoughts:
* Five out of six and almost no movement in the division, seems like everyone is getting hot at the same time.
* Islanders have to go on the road here and they have to get points whether they be ot losses or shootout losses to go with the wins. Playoff target starts with ninety two points and ten games over. Four points in the next three games puts the Islanders at a ninety two point pace which should keep them in the race until the final days of the season.
Most year's in the East it takes ninety two points. A few years in the West it took ninety four-ninety six points. In 2002-03 the Islanders got in (without shootouts) with eighty three points but that was a once in a decade break.
* Washington sure does have Ottawa's number which really tells me whoever wants it most will win come playoff time.
* I'm not sure if this is just a good stretch for the Islanders or it's the scoring which has been long-overdue finally settling in. What I do think is Bill Guerin has settled in and is getting to spots on the ice where his shot is effective. Sometimes it takes a good half a season or more for players to settle into a new team, that could be part of a lot of players problems beyond the scoring resume. Mike Comrie may be playing hurt and have the same problem but maybe Guerin settling in helps Comrie finally start scoring.
Better late than never but it must continue and more players must join the party on a team that needs scoring from every source. Sure are a lot of players overdue to get hot.
For a while now I have thought that opening weekend for the Islanders was kind of like what Phoenix did against us a year ago. Unlike last year's Coyotes this club has made the most of it's low scoring and can play defense so they stayed in contention.
Now we find out of the last five or six games are the real 07-08 Islanders or the team that could not score more that two goals for about fourteen games in a row.
How does the expression go? What does not kill you makes you stronger?
* No surprise to me Dubie has played his average game and has given the Islanders a chance to win. He's not at his best yet but anyone who has seen him in Bridgeport for year's know he's capable of stealing games with high shots against. With DiPietro back in net Dubie will have to stay sharp somehow.
* What will it take for Jeff Tambellini to get another opportunity with the Islanders given how he has played recently? Seems like a numbers game on left wing will keep him in Bridgeport unless a player can slide into Tim Jackman's spot on an off-wing.
This is when you want to recall a Tambellini and see if what he's doing in the AHL can work in the NHL, but my guess is it's not going to happen. No, I'm not suggesting Blake Comeau go back down because he's looked good and you do not move him to right wing. Right now you cannot move Richard Park out of his spot the way he is playing but if you are thinking long-term Tambellini's the better bet in terms of skill and shot.
Unless Richard Park can really become what Jason Blake used to be here, which he shows signs of at times.
* Blake Comeau starts scoring is there any place on this roster for Chris Simon on February 21st because left wing.
* That Hilbert-Fedntenko setup was one of the best skilled plays of the season from the forwards behind the net. Hilbert looked good in the third line center's spot which bears watching if Sillinger does not produce more.
* When someone does not play here they really drop off the radar, would love to see a few words from Bryan Berard.
* Newsday: Greg Logan did a late afternoon blog on DiPietro/Sillinger return, Dubielewicz with injury updates to Mike Comrie who sat out but will play against Florida.
* Point Blank: Chris Botta did a blog on the derogatory chant made during the goal song and the booing of Jason Blake during his return.
NYI Fan Central Comments:
The goal song has been around forever, a few years ago the team's website asked the fans if they wanted a change and the overwhelming response was no.
It's time for a change in songs after goals. Islander management is going to have to help these newer fans learn when to cheer and when to get on the opposition whether they like it or not. The person who claimed they started it says he has been a fan for years and talked about the crowds during the dynasty days. If that's the case he should know the code of being a fan if he can recite how things used to be which means there are times to get on the opposing team vs cheering your team which is the issue.
In those days Islander fans got on the officials (names were worn in those days in the back of uniforms) but they knew when and how to react.
It's not hard at all.
It's beyond embarrassing to see the goals tainted with these chants which are not only silly but ill-timed after games with the opposing goalie long gone. I don't know if this is a loud-ville thing with the kids, but it reflects a segment of the hockey crowd with no hockey knowledge that needs some help to go with their passion.
Mr Botta is entitled like all of his to his opinion. If he calls into question only the timing of when it's chanted I agree. If he only calls into question the profanity the club has to take a look at all things that draw a profane response during game events.
Fans want to jeer the opposing goalie after the play begins again that's within the norm of a game and natural, this is not and gives a poor reflection of the crowd which suggests our fans do not even know when to cheer. It makes the fans look foolish and does not make them come off as passionate, but unknowledgable.
Of course I want the old siren back and the organ music that was played after goals for about twenty five years but that's not going to happen either.
Let's hope the Islander fans have a lot of reasons to chant something Thursday considering Florida shut them out in Florida. This all seems like a bad omen.