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A blog by a long time New York Islanders fan who stays true to the fellas wearing orange, white and blue…but thinks the Islanders organization has some shaping up to do.

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Thursday, December 27, 2007

Isles Progress, Bloggers Digress

An upside to my not being able to make it to an Isle's home game is spending most of the game on the phone with Angie, like we do for away games. Usually after a few ‘did you see that?’ texts have been exchanged, one of us starts dialing. Here’s how it went during the game last night…

-Text message exchange:

Christine: why didn’t Comrie shoot right away?

Angie: because it’s like a disease with him. Holdontothepucktoolongitis.

Christine: he must score very soon

Comrie scores!

Phone call starts off loudly about Comrie’s goal. We agree that I have reached Ms. Cleo status and finally have proof in writing.

The digressions begin…

-Vasicek’s new nickname = JoVa the Hut

-Fedotenko’s name is best yelled FedoTEEEEEENKKKKOOOOO!

-If you want to make Angie laugh, yell the above.

-Christie Brinkley’s commercial has got to go. It looks like they interrupted her during Karaoke.

-The backdrop behind Butch and Deb needs to go. Not sure why but it just does.

-Campoli’s new nickname = Cannoli or Holy Cannoli! depending on how he’s playing.

-The Isle’s Christmas break was referred to so many times before and during this game that it could be a drinking game.

-Toronto coach Paul Maurice won the best tie contest vs Ted Nolan.

-Hilbert’s new nickname = Hungry Hungry Hilbert (if you played the game as a kid, you’ll know where that came from).

-Best dressed award went to Butch Goring for his fly suit and tie combo. Deb came in 2nd, her shirt was very flattering but her white bracelet looked like a hospital ID tag that she forgot to cut off, and it put Angie into a hypnotic state.

-There was actually a hockey commercial during the game…promoting other teams.

-New rule: Comrie is allowed no more than 2 taps of the puck before shooting.

-The Radio City Music Hall Christmas Spectacular commercial - please make it stop!

I haven’t been able to come up with a word to describe how our conversations go, but they sure seem to reveal that we both have some kind of HADD – hockey attention deficit disorder.

As for the game…what a game! Coordination of talent was on the rise! With the exception of DP leaving the game due to an injured knee, so many elements of the Isle’s style of play were right last night. The offense and defense seemed well connected throughout the game. The offense appeared to be taking more risks – what has seemed like the offense playing hot potato with the puck, has turned into more players taking ownership by zigzagging in towards the net. The defense provided perfect protection for Dubie, who after a few minutes of dusting off the cobwebs, defined grace under pressure. Way to go fellas!

This is the time of the season where teams separate themselves from the herd. Because teams have now had some time to solidify their performance, it will be harder for teams to take big leaps upward in the standings and even harder to knock down the kings of the hill, like Detroit and Ottawa. The Isles now face a challenging schedule, starting with Ottawa tomorrow night where Dubie will most likely start his third game of the season. Confidence is going to play a big part in how the Isles fair against this speedy goal scoring team. One effective psychological strategy for the Isles could be to stun Ottawa by scoring the first goal of the game. Because the Isles will be the team most on guard at the start of the game, scoring first might help to flip that around and help to deflate Ottawa. Two additional strategies for the Isles will be to avoid unnecessary penalties and avoid playing cat and mouse hockey –but if it happens – be the cat! The Isles beat Ottawa once, they can beat them again.


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