Sunday, November 23, 2008

Double Standard

How is it possible that a clothesline to the head isn't really making contact?? It seems that Colin Campbell has one set of rules for the players of 29 NHL teams and a totally different, harsher set of rules for the Isles. Thomas Pock and Mike Mottau, Chris Simon and Chris Pronger, etc. It's hard to think that there isn' t something behind his decisions.

Before Mottau made like Tito Santana, Nielsen was having one of his best games as an Islander. Confident and energetic, Frans was flying around the ice like a 10 year vet. He was in position and comfortable with the puck. One play in particular made me think that Frans had finally arrived. Midway through the game, Frans picked up the puck in his defensive zone and started up the ice. Jeff Tambellini was skating full speed behind Frans and Nielsen stayed ahead of the high flying Tamby controlling the puck without losing stride. While the play had not materialized into anything, the control that Frans showed had proven the maturity he had grown into. It's unfortunate that Nielsen had gotten hurt at this time in his career, right when he had turned the corner.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

It's been a while.

Wow, I can't believe how long it's been since I last posted. Sorry to those of you that have emailed me, I'm sure my responses clarified. For those wondering, let me just say that the Election and financial Crisis have taken up a bit of my time.

Let's get on to the more important stuff at hand, the ISLES.
So we're 18 games in and the Isles have compiled a rather decent 7-9-2 stats. Decent because the majority of Islander fans have expected this team to sink like the Titanic. That's obviously not the case and Coach Gordo's got the team to believe in the system. OVERSPEED. What I've noticed is that this system is built for a team like the Isles. Fairly young, speedy guys with a knack for forechecking. Alot of fans around the boards are saying that if the Isles had better players, the system would work better. The only way I believe this to be true is if they had some more finishers, otherwise the system gives the team chances off turnovers, clearly evident during the Vancouver game, and eventually they're going to bury some. It's safe to say that Gordo put in a decent system that, once the team is fully comfortable with, will show signs of interest from other teams.

The injury front had hit as well. DP, Witt, Marty, Sutts, Campy, the IVth all have been sidelined this short season. With a depleted D, the team gave up some leads and have 9 losses. This team could easily by above .500 had the D remained healthy. Unfortunately, those are the breaks and it looks like the full D will be back together shortly.

Weight and Guerin have proven that they can still play and, if it were up to me, given another year on the contracts. Now, let's not go rushing into anything, alot can change over the next couple of days, weeks, months, but I'm sure Snowy hasn't closed the door on that option yet.

And the brightest spot of this young season is not so young Joey Mac. With the Rick on the shelf, Joey (clap clap) has provided solid goaltending. Schooled by guys like Ozzie and the Dominator, Joey Mac has come into his own and has been as good as anyone could've hoped for. Wade who??
What about Comrie & Tamby, Nielson & Bergy, Bailey & KO? That's coming up a bit later.