Tag Archive | Washington Capitals

Isles Making Lasting Memories for Fans in the Playoffs

By Brett Malamud

Silence. That can be heard early Monday afternoon in the little barn in Uniondale. But turn back the clock a mere 24 hours, and you have arguably the loudest atmosphere that any team will experience in the playoffs this season. The Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum will be closing its doors at the end of the year, and New York Islanders fans are giving the building the ultimate send off.

Fans were challenged on Saturday afternoon, as the Washington Capitals’ Alex Ovechkin gave his expectations for Sunday’s game three matchup.

Ovechkin was greeted with chants of “CAN YOU HEAR US?” The chant echoed throughout game three. From the opening faceoff, fans gave the Capitals the ultimate distraction, and fueled the adrenaline of the hometown Islanders. A second period deflection by Kyle Okposo gave the Islanders the lead, igniting the crowd even more. Defenseman Johnny Boychuk finished the second period with a game-changing diving stop on Ovechkin and headed to the locker room to the sound of a loud “John-ny Boy-chuk!” chant.

Nicklas Backstrom ripped the hearts out of many of the 16,170 fans when he went top shelf and found the back of the net with just 6:06 to play. Was this the beginning of another late-game Isles collapse? I’m sure that two weeks ago, many Islanders fans would have anticipated that. But this day was different. After the goal, another thunderous “Let’s go Islanders” chant broke out and the crowd stayed in it. The fans wouldn’t go unheard, and refused to go home unhappy. Regulation ended and fans buckled up for the long overtime period…or at least that’s what they thought.

Fifteen seconds. That’s all it took. Nick Leddy fired the puck, Nikolay Kulemin deflected it on net, and Islanders captain John Tavares picked up the rebound and sliced the puck just over the pad of goaltender Braden Holtby, sending Islanders country into a mass frenzy. The Capitals left the ice to a resounding “YES! YES! YES!” chant, and were now down two games to one, to a team that hasn’t won a playoff series in 20 years.

The game also signaled that more hockey is to be played at the Coliseum, as the Islanders are guaranteed to play at least two more games in the Barn, with more on the way if they can close out Washington twice more and advance to the next round.

The Islanders before the final regular season game at Nassau Coliseum on April 12, 2015

The Islanders before the final regular season game at Nassau Coliseum on April 12, 2015

This season, the Islanders have honored their past, bringing back legends from the cup years, and honoring them individually. Last weekend, the Islanders shocked many when they did not bring back all of them for the last regular season game, but opted for “decades night” a week earlier, bringing back two players from each decade. No offense to the players honored, but people who paid big money for tickets didn’t come to see Eric Cairns, Steve Webb and Shawn Bates. They came to see Nystrom, Bossy, Gillies, Potvin, Smith, Trottier, Bourne, Resch, Lafontaine, Westfall, Harris, Morrow, Tonelli, Goring, Sutter, Turgeon, Volek, Palffy, Berard, and Jonsson all in one room on the final night of the season. They came to see the guys who turned the Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum into Fort Neverlose and into the Barn, and many were left in disappointment. But we move on. The only truly fitting ending to the coliseum now would be John Tavares skating to center ice, shaking commissioner Gary Bettman’s hand, and lifting that 35-pound trophy sky high. That would honor the past, and what the building has meant to all Islanders fans. It’s place where many memories were made, and a place where many have spent most of their childhoods. It’s Home.

Game four is set for 7 pm on Tuesday night.


Brett Malamud is an English Rhetoric Major at Binghamton University. He is the co-founder of dabuzzza.com. His favorite athletes are Derek Jeter and Todd Bertuzzi. You can follow him on twitter at @brettnyy

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Islanders To Be Sold

By Brett Malamud

The Islanders announced yesterday that the team has been sold by Charles Wang to former Washington Capitals owner Jon Ledecky. The former owner was a minority owner in Washington DC in the late 1990’s and early 2000’s. Along with Ledecky comes London-based investor Scott Malkin.

Charles Wang has owned the Islanders for the last 14 years before selling the team yesterday (Via Getty)

Charles Wang has owned the Islanders for the last 14 years before selling the team yesterday (Via Getty)

This is a huge step for this Islanders organization. Many Isles fans have hoped that a new owner would eventually buy the team and their day has finally come. With this being the last year of Islanders hockey at the Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum and a move to Barclays Center next season, a fresh start sounds nice. The move also opens up a potential pool of money, something that the Islanders have not seen. This could have a major effect on the roster. The team which once was struggling with money can now set out into future free agency periods and attempt to sign a top tier player. Of course, the Islanders have a few top players that are locked into longer term deals with the team.
Wang will stay on to serve as majority owner for the next two seasons before stepping aside and passing the baton to Malkin and Ledecky. The sale must be approved by the league at a meeting that will take place in December.


 

Brett Malamud is a Computer Science Major at Binghamton University. He is the co-founder of dabuzzza.com. His favorite athletes are Derek Jeter and Todd Bertuzzi. You can follow him on twitter at @brettnyy

NHL Power Rankings

 By Mike Basile

1)    Chicago Blackhawks (20-4-4, 44 points) Currently on a six game win streak, this team continues to get hotter and hotter and are a sure pick for number one on the power rankings.

The Blackhawks lead the league in goals per game, led by Patrick Kane and Jonathan Toews (Via Sports Talk Florida)

The Blackhawks lead the league in goals per game, led by Patrick Kane and Jonathan Toews (Via Sports Talk Florida)

2)    San Jose Sharks (18-3-5, 41 points) Also on a nice win streak, the Sharks have won five in a row. With only three regulation losses, they are a very dangerous team.

3)    St Louis Blues (18-5-3, 39 points) With one of the top goal scores in the league (Alexander Steen) and a great goaltending duo, this team rounds out the top three.

4)    Colorado Avalanche (19-6-0, 38 points) Still a surprise team to many but with great young talent, this team’s hot start does not come as a surprise to me.

5)    Boston Bruins (18-7-2, 38 points) They are the most consistent team in the league in my opinion. They come to play every night and with great goaltending, are usually in the win column.

6)    Anaheim Ducks (18-7-4, 40 points) After a hot start, Anaheim hit a little cold spell, but I am not worried that they will be stuck in it long.

7)    Los Angeles Kings (17-7-4, 38 points) They are still playing good hockey even with their all-star goalie out until Christmas. Dustin Brown has shown true leadership with this team.

8)    Pittsburgh Penguins (18-9-1, 37 points) Usually you would expect to see this team around the top three, but with some inconsistency this season they have dropped to number eight.

9)    Phoenix Coyotes (15-7-4, 34 points) This team fights hard for wins and is backed by some very solid goaltending.

10) Tampa Bay Lightning (16-9-1, 33 points) In my opinion one of the most impressive teams this year. Without Stamkos and still way over .500 is a nice surprise and so they finish the top ten.

11) Detroit Red Wings (14-7-7, 35 points) They’re on a four game win streak right now and beat the Islanders for the first time since 2003 this week. With play like this, they can shoot up the rankings quickly.

12) Vancouver Canucks (14-10-5, 33 points) It’s been an up and down season so far for the Canucks. If they do not find consistency, they will not find any success.

13) Minnesota Wild (16-8-5, 37 points) With a rough end to the month a top ten team in points will be found out of my top ten.

14)  Montreal Canadiens (16-9-3, 35 points) 7-1-2 in their last 10 and quickly rising in the standings. They can crack the top ten soon if they continue to perform at this rate.

15) Washington Capitals (14-11-2, 30 points) With a big comeback win against the division rival Islanders this weekend, the Capitals won two straight and improve to .500 on the road.

16) Dallas Stars (12-9-4, 28 points) A team that I thought would be a playoff threat with great goaltending has been disappointing thus far.

17) Nashville Predators (13-11-3, 29 points) A -13 goals against is not beneficial for any team, but especially not a team that prides itself on defense.

18) Toronto Maple Leafs (14-10-3, 31 points) Toronto is considerably low on my rankings because I expected a lot from this team and quite frankly am disappointed in their overall play.

19) Philadelphia Flyers (12-12-2, 26 points) The team still has some pieces to connect, but Steve Mason is the biggest piece and he is in place.

20) New York Rangers (14-14-0, 28 points) A team that can usually have Lundqvist as a backbone did not start him for the second straight game last night in favor of Cam Talbot, who has been good in net. If Henrik gets going, they could have a scary two-headed monster.

21) Winnipeg Jets (13-12-4, 30 points) I usually do not like to call out one player, but the Jets expected big things from Ondrej Pavelec and have got pretty much nothing from him.

22) New Jersey Devils (11-12-5, 27 points) Win one lose one is not a good attitude to have in the NHL and it seems like the Devils have been playing like that all year so far.

23) Ottawa Senators (10-13-4, 24 points) It seems like their offense and defense can never click on the same night and that has resulted in a poor start for the Sens.

24) Columbus Blue Jackets (10-14-3, 23 points) A team that just missed the playoffs last season that had high expectations has struggled to say the least to begin this season.

25) Carolina Hurricanes (10-12-5, 25 points) Carolina has too many questions and no answers on the blue line. 57 goals for also does not help a struggling team.

26) Edmonton Oilers (9-17-2, 20 points) The best of the worst! They begin my bottom five in the league and this young team will NOT win games with poor defense and weak goaltending.

27) Calgary Flames- (9-13-4, 22 points) As expected, Calgary is in the bottom tier of the league. 3-5-2 in their last ten is not making matters any better.

28) New York Islanders (8-15-4, 20 points) After a good start to the season, everything went downhill after an injury to Lubomir Visnovsky. The team has lost six straight now and is treading water to stay alive.

29) Florida Panthers (7-15-5, 19 points) A team that is still in rebuild mode has Tim Thomas leading the way but is trying to pave the way for goaltender Jacob Markstrom. If there is a bright spot for this team, Aleksander Barkov looks great!

30) Buffalo Sabres (6-20-2, 14 points) Not much has to be said when your goal differential is -37. Actually there is one thing, DRAFT PARTY!

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Mike Basile is a sophomore at York College Of Pennsylvania. He is a huge sports fan, and when it comes to hockey maybe considered a little obsessive. Giving insight on the Islanders and all things hockey. You can follow him on twitter at @mikeybasile1

Stay Tuned: Week of November 4th

By Brett Malamud

This is the first of a weekly article that will provide you with the most intriguing games in sports for the upcoming week. If yesterday’s football games proved anything, it was that this is going to be an exciting week in sports. So let’s get to it! Here is the first installment of Stay Tuned:  

NBA:

With the first week in the books, the second week of the NBA season looks to be just as exciting.

Chicago Bulls vs. Indiana Pacers, Wednesday November 6th 7:00 PM EST, ESPN

Two of the top teams in the Eastern Conference square off in a showdown in Bankers Life Fieldhouse. Derek Rose goes head to head against Paul George and the undefeated Indiana Pacers. This one is a must watch.

LA Clippers vs. Miami Heat, Thursday November 7th 7:00 PM EST, TNT and TSN

The Clippers head into South Beach after the Heat’s rough week last week. The Heat opened up the season going 2-2, and they’ll try to pick up the pace moving forward.

The Heat will try to stop Blake Griffin and the Clippers on Thursday (Via The Smoking Section)

The Heat will try to stop Blake Griffin and the Clippers on Thursday (Via The Smoking Section) 

NHL:

Division standings are starting to take form, as we are now one month into the season. 

NY Islanders vs. Washington Capitals Tuesday November 5th 7:00 PM EST, MSG+ and CSN-DC

Two of the brightest stars in the NHL will face off in this epic battle at the Verizon Center. John Tavares leads the Islanders into Washington, where Alex Ovechkin and the Capitals sit at .500 on the season. Only one point separates the teams in the standings, so it should be a good battle.

Pittsburgh Penguins vs. NY Rangers, Wednesday November 6th 7:30 PM EST, NBCSN, TSN2, and RDS2

The Rangers and the Penguins have had bad blood for a while now, and Wednesday night should be no different. Watch these division rivals square off and Madison Square Garden come alive in this week’s Wednesday Night Rivalry.

Evgeni Malkin hopes to put the puck past Henrik Lundqvist in a battle at the Garden on Wednesday (Via Last Word On Sports)

Evgeni Malkin hopes to put the puck past Henrik Lundqvist in a battle at the Garden on Wednesday (Via Last Word On Sports)

Montreal Canadians vs. Ottawa Senators, Thursday November 7th 7:00 PM EST, CBC and RDS

There’s nothing as wild as a Canadian clash. The Habs head to the capital city to take on Erik Karlsson and the Senators. A must watch game in Canada. 

NCAA Basketball:

This Friday marks the start of the college basketball season and there are a few games to stay updated on.

(18) UConn vs. Maryland, Friday November 8th 6:30 PM EST, ESPN2

This is sure to be a good game at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn. A small Maryland team took a hit, losing 7’1” center Alex Len. The Phoenix Suns selected Len fifth overall in this year’s NBA draft. Maryland will face a tough test though, going up against a much bigger UConn Huskies team.

Barclays Center will be the site for this Friday's showdown between Maryland and UConn. (Via AP)

Barclays Center will be the site for this Friday’s showdown between Maryland and UConn. (Via AP)

Georgetown vs. (19) Oregon, Friday November 8th 8:00 PM EST, ESPN

Coming off a first round loss to Cinderella story Florida Gulf Coast in last season’s NCAA tournament, it’ll be interesting to see Georgetown without Otto Porter, who was selected by the Washington Wizards as the third overall pick in this year’s NBA Draft. They face number 19 ranked Oregon in the Armed Forces Classic in South Korea

NCAA Football:

(3) Oregon vs. (5) Stanford, Thursday November 7th 9:00 PM EST, ESPN

Not much needs to be said here. The Ducks take on the Cardinal in a heated rivalry matchup.

No Chip Kelly for the Ducks here, but they'll still step up and try to take down Stanford (Via AP)

No Chip Kelly for the Ducks here, but they’ll still step up and try to take down Stanford (Via AP)

(13) LSU vs. (1) Alabama, Saturday November 9th 8:00 PM EST, CBS

The Tigers head into Tuscaloosa to go up against the Crimson Tide what should be the college football game of the week

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Brett Malamud is a Computer Science Major at Binghamton University. He is the co-founder of dabuzzza.com. His favorite athletes are Derek Jeter and Todd Bertuzzi. You can follow him on twitter at @brettnyy