Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Pacing '08-'09

It's tough in this day and age of information overload to watch a hockey game from the DVR. I was about an hour behind watching this evening's game against Carolina, and despite my best efforts was made aware of all developments in real-time. There were texts from friends at the game, updates on my Twitter feed, and emails from friends warning me of yet another collapse. It's a strange feeling watching a solid 3-1 game late in the third, yet knowing the disaster that is going to happen. In fairness though, given the Isles history, those watching the game live probably knew what was going to happen just as well as I did.

My main takeaway from the game is that the Isles are on pace to match their point total from last season, averaging 0.7 points per game. This can be taken as a positive or negative, depending on your disposition. Personally, I think it's a good thing. I have no doubt this year's Islanders can and will play better hockey than they have thus far this year. If that's the case, they will show improvement over their '08-'09 point total, which is success in my book. I don't have delusions of grandeur.

Here's my takeaways from the game:

- Coming into this game, I was thinking that, despite leading the team in scoring, I wasn't overly impressed by Matt Moulson. Not to say I didn't like him for this team, just that his stats overstated his real impact. Tonight, he showed me that he is for real. He played a solid 2-way game and is on pace to be one of the better surprises we've seen on the Island in many years.

- What is going on with Mark Streit? Not just tonight, but all year he's looked like a different player. He's got a respectable 4 pts and is only a -1, but I'm looking beyond the stat sheet. He's had enormous difficulty keeping the puck in the offensive zone and has misfired on more shots than I remember from all of last year. We need him to step it up.

- Best game of the year by Roloson thus far, and I would say that even if they lost the shootout. Finally looked like the player I've watched in Edmonton the last few years.

- Josh Bailey continues to be invisible, and is not building on the promise he showed in the second half of last season. 7 shots on goal for the whole season thus far is unacceptable.

Nice to get the first win behind us. Onward and upward to Saturday when the overrated (yeah, right) Ovechkin hits the Coliseum Ice. Remember, in Islanders country, 2 wins constitutes a streak. Lets make it happen.



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