Friday, October 31, 2014

Thomas Vanek Used Islanders Paycheck To Cover Gambling Debts

photo by zimbio

Earlier this year, reports surfaced connecting former Islanders forward Thomas Vanek to an illegal gambling ring in upstate NY that had been taken down by authorities.

Today, more information came out as one of the parties involved entered a guilty plea.  According to reports, Vanek used a New York Islanders check to pay off a portion of his gambling debt.  The report states that Vanek's total debt was over 1 million dollars.

Isles Drop 2nd Straight 5-0 To Avs

Tonight, our Islanders dropped their second straight game by a score of 5-0 to the Avalanche.  Here are some of my notes:

-I don't know what it is about the second period, but it seems like that has taken over as the teams troublesome period this season rather than the third period which had been the case the last few seasons.

-If Travis Hamonic isn't ready to go on Saturday night, Matt Donovan should absolutely be in the lineup over Brian Strait.

-The Cory Conacher experiment on the first line should end as well.  He doesn't have the instincts to play on that line and is holding them down.  Nikolay Kulemin or Anders Lee should get a shot in that spot.

-Jaroslav Halak needs to play on Saturday.  I know Johnson wasn't the reason the team lost tonight but he isn't supposed to be the number one goalie.  Halak was acquired from the Capitals to be the teams number one goalie.  He wasn't brought in to split time with a backup which has been the case to this point.

-While Cappy has gotten a little better in terms of ice time distribution, having Casey Cizikas playing roughly the same amount of time as Anders Lee and Ryan Strome seems a little backwards to me.

Well, this certainly wasn't how the team wanted to get their road trip underway.  With the tougher part of the road trip coming up with matches against the California teams, this has the potential to be very unkind to the Islanders win/loss record.

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Pre Game: Isles @ Avalanche

photo by ifgroup

Tonight, our Islanders begin a tough 5 game west coast road trip as they travel to Denver to take on Matt Duchene and the Colorado Avalanche.

The goalie match up tonight features Chad Johnson for the Islanders over supposed number one goalie Jaroslav Halak.  Meanwhile, Semyon Varlamov will be in net for the Avalanche.

The rest of the lineup will be the same as the Islanders 4-3 loss to the Jets on Tuesday night.  However, according to reports, Travis Hamonic could return to the lineup as soon as Saturday in San Jose.  Getting Hamonic back and having the defense 100% healthy for the first time this season will be big for the Islanders.

Ex Isles Owner Sentenced To 20 Years In Jail

According to Newsday, former Islanders co-owner Stephen Walsh was sentenced to 20 years in prison for a 50 million dollar fraud.  Walsh was arrested in 2009 and plead guilty earlier this year.

Walsh served as Islanders co-owner from 1991-2000, according to the article.

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

NHL Legend Gordie Howe Recovering From Stroke

photo by citynews

According to reports, NHL legend Gordie Howe is resting after suffering  a, "pretty serious stroke" over the weekend.  According to his son Dr. Murray Howe, the Hall of Famer is having trouble speaking and one side of his body is very weak.

Dr. Howe told members of the media, "I feel like this is his last lap around the rink."

Howe played professional hockey in 6 different decades playing his final game when he was 69 years old.  He is truly one of a kind.  We here at savetheisles would like to send our thoughts and prayers to Howe and his family and friends.

Happy Birthday Denis Potvin

photo by zimbio

Today, Islanders legend and Hall of Famer Denis Potvin is celebrating his 61st birthday.

The Islanders drafted Potvin with the first overall pick in the 1973 NHL draft and boy did they strike gold with that pick.  Potvin went on to become a staple on the Islanders blue line for over a decade.  Potvin was team captain during the teams dynasty in the early 80's and has gone down as the top defenseman in team history and one of the top defensemen to ever play in the NHL.  Potvin ended up playing in 1060 regular season games for the Islanders and put up 1052 points in that period of time including 742 assists.  Potvin also played in 185 playoff games as a member of the Islanders and put up 164 points in those games.  Potvin wasn't only known for his offense though as he was also a fierce defender as well.  Today, Potvin is working as a commentator for the Florida Panthers.

We here at savetheisles would like to wish Potvin a very Happy Birthday.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Pitiful Effort, Pitiful Officials Doom Isles

Tonight, our Islanders had their win streak snapped at 2 as they fell to the Winnipeg Jets by a score of 4-3.  Here are some of my notes from the game:

-I don't know why Halak is a slow starter, but he needs to figure his issues out sooner rather than later because he needs to be better.  There is no simpler way of putting it than that.

-Matt Donovan should see the ice on Thursday over Strait if Hamonic is still unable to go.  Strait just isn't good enough to be a top-6 defenseman on this team.

-The officials were horribly inconsistent tonight to the point where it was maddening.  The fact that the game was altered not because of the players but a call by the officials is wrong.  That major call on Kulemin at the start of the second period changed the game as it took away the Islanders momentum from period one.  The hit did look bad but barely any contact was made on the hit so for a major to be called on it was a stretch.  Also, Conacher with a breakaway in the third period gets tripped and no penalty is called, it is just mind boggling to me the lack of consistency on the part of the officials.

-The team needs to improve in their own zone.  I have lost count of how many times I have said this already this season and we are only 9 games in.  At times, they are a real mess in their zone and they are fortunate that it hasn't come back to bite them more than it has.

-One of the few bright spots from the game tonight was a multi point outing for Brock Nelson who is now tied for the team lead in points.

-They always need to bring their highest level of effort.  However, tonight, much like last Tuesday in the loss to the Leafs it was really lacking in the effort department which doesn't reflect well on the coaching staff.

The Islanders were outplayed for a majority of the second and third period by the Jets.  At times in the third not even being able to break out of their own zone.  This game also goes down as their second lackluster at best effort in one weeks time.  If this lackluster play continues, we will find out how short Garth Snows leash is for Capuano before he makes a change.