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The Skinny: Isles 6, Carolina 4

“The Skinny” By Eric Hornick Game 18 Isles 6, Carolina 4 Johnny Boychuk’s second goal of the season broke a 4-4 tie with 4:25 t...

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Isles return to NHL Saturday

This ridiculously strange schedule has had the Isles playing so infrequently that it almost seems like they are not in the NHL. In fact, when the Isles take to the ice on Saturday, it will be 5 weeks and 1 day (36 days) after they opened the season in Buffalo.

Only once before have the Isles taken that long to reach game 13. In 1999, the Isles took 39 games between the opener and game 13-- but that season featured eight days between games 1 and 2.

How does this compare to recent seasons? The inactivity is not an illusion. Last year, game 13 was 30 days after the opener and the season before it was 29 days. Thus, the Isles will have had six extra days off compared to last season at this point.

The days off come with a price though --they will play the final 70 games in 147 days --the shortest time to play the final 70 since the season switched to 82 games.

Put another way--the Isles season starts and end on the first Friday of October and April respectively. That's 183 days. The Isles will play on 82 of those dates and be off on 101 of them.

In the first 36 days of the season, the Isles played on 12 days and had 24 days off.

In the final 147 days, they will play on 70 days and have 77 days off. Four of those off days come during the All-Star Break, another three come around Christmas. Other than that, it's basically every other day for the next 21 weeks, beginning Saturday.

Forever1940 is the nom de plume of FSN statistician Eric Hornick. Eric, who has worked the Stanley Cup Finals four times, celebrated his 25th anniversary as the statistician on Islander home telecasts on January 21, 2007. Often referred to on-air as an actuary, he is one of 2,920 Fellows of the Casualty Actuarial Society and is the President of the Casualty Actuaries of Greater NY. You can find him in the "Best Seat in the House", about six feet to Howie and Billy's left, at most Islander home games. For more on the actuarial profession, visit www.beanactuary.org

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