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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.

Islanders 2014-15 Season Mantra

Try not. Do...or do not.


Friday, November 21, 2014

Bring Penguins a Pebble and then Love Them to Death

When I saw that the Islanders were playing the Penguins soon into this season 'Oh s*#@' came to mind. Too early. Just too early. It isn't that the Islanders aren't skilled enough to beat the Penguins, it's just that the Penguins are one of two teams who can disable the Islanders psychologically, the other team being the Flyers (although this seems to be changing slowly). I sometimes get criticized because I don't hate the Rangers. First, I don't hate the Rangers because hating a sports team is kinda silly, well unless it's the Flyers, then it's justified... and second because the rivalry between the Islanders and Rangers is a healthy one, a balanced one. The Rangers have nothing mindset-wise over my team.

The Penguins are a different story because I believe they have a psychological hold on the Islanders and that is truly frustrating to watch. The Penguins are overly confident when they play the Islanders and it works for them more times than not because their presence arrives before their actual bodies do. Beyond that point, I can't speak for when they play other teams but as far as when they play the Islanders, I don't know what the hell Pittsburg does during periods but it should be bottled and sold. This is a team who could be losing 3-0 after the first period and come out onto the ice at the start of the 2nd with the demeanor as if nothing has happened.

I do not like when the Islanders retreat from the Penguins. That's why they do - retreat. The Penguins then advance into the space the Islanders have given up. Like clockwork. After that, it can get ugly. The loss to Pittsburg on October 18th tripped the Islanders up with the same pattern, BUT to their credit (and really they deserve a TON of praise) they got back up and moved on with the season which is a gift to us Islander fans. There are healthy changes this season, and a more detailed post about that is currently in this blog's draft folder waiting to be finished. Overall, success this season for the Islanders is about breaking old habits, and patterns which will feel good and clear space for better habits and patterns. December will be the month to really mark their progress from prior seasons.

If the Islanders are to lose to the Penguins, all I ask is that it be about skill and not have any psychological reason to it. If the Islanders should find themselves ahead after the 1st or 2nd period, they need to watch out for the first 5-7 minutes into the next period where the Penguins are able to tolerate frustration well...after that, they become more frustrated as if they can't imagine why they haven't been able to score.

Dear Islanders, try a little reaction formation this season with Pittsburg...love the Penguins to death.


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