Rangers 5: Islanders 2
Canadiens 3: Islanders 0
Yep, in the span of two games the Islanders have only mustered two goals. Some may argue that it isn't for lack of trying and just for lack of opportunities, but at least in the Habs game, I can argue that it was for lack of concentration.
It really is something that these guys have allowed five PP goals these past two games. One of the guys who's been taking an awful lot of penalties lately, surprisingly, is Mark Streit, and thanks to him Ryan Callahan scored one of his two PP goals, and Andrei Markov one of his as well. I wasn't able to see the entire Isles-Rangers game, but I saw plenty of the Habs game, and all I can say is perhaps it would be best for Scott Gordon to scratch the defenseman for a couple of games. He's still got plenty of ice time, but it's become evident that he, as well as plenty of Isles players, is slowly getting burnt out and needs some rest, among other things. Yes, Gordon trusts him and all, but even the best of players needs some time to sit back and watch things for a bit, and I think Streit's time has come.
But it's so much more than that. Everyone in general has to stop taking penalties; passes need to be crisper, people need to stop shooting right at the goalie and making them look much better than they are (because yes, Jaroslav Halak is a very good goalie, but shooting right to the jersey adds unnecessary saves to his total, don't you think, Josh Bailey and Nate Thompson?), and overall the team just needs to find something to get them going again. I don't think that you can blame it so much on "bad bounces" as much as just not executing a play well enough, or trying to do so much you end up doing nothing at all.
And did I mention the fans? Not ours, but theirs- Rangers and Canadiens fans once again taking over our building and making it theirs. There's nothing quite as embarrassing or angering to me as something like that happening, and if not in number, certainly in voice, opposing fans always seem to drown us out. I understand it sucks that we're struggling right now, and the snowstorm last night probably drove many away from going to Nassau Coliseum. However, this has been the norm for quite a while, and I'm kind of getting sick of it. It doesn't matter to many teams' fans whether their boys win or lose- they show up to support, regardless. You could make the argument that some of those teams are in areas where hockey's much more popular, and maybe it is... but still, consider that a full house could perhaps give our boys the confidence they need. If Habs fans can make it through the snow and over hundreds of miles to cheer their team on, then we certainly can as well. Enough of the excuse, "Well, they're crazy," and try to make the effort. Not saying everyone's at fault here, but... come on, guys.
Anyway... there isn't much of a focus in this post, and perhaps it's better that way. There isn't one thing that the Isles can really focus on in terms of their play, either- it's a mix of too many penalties, missed opportunities, and some vets who could use a sitting. Overall, not looking too good on the Island.
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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.
Sunday, December 20, 2009
Rangers 5: Islanders 2