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(Unfortunately this is one that I had multiple copies of in my files) Quick: what's 14 x 13 x 12 x 11? It's 24,024. What...

Wednesday, December 31, 2008

It's just another New Year's Eve

The Isles will host Florida this afternoon.

It's the 17th New Year's Eve game in Islander history, but only the fourth at home.

Overall, the Isles are 9-6-1 on NYE, including a 2-1 record at home.


31-Dec-77 Vs Montreal    2 4 L
31-Dec-82 @ Buffalo    1 5 L
31-Dec-83 @ Minnesota    7 3 W
31-Dec-84 @ Minnesota     3 4 L
31-Dec-85 @ Detroit        5 4 Wot
31-Dec-86 @ New York     3 4 Lot
31-Dec-88 Vs Washington 6 4 W
31-Dec-89 @ Buffalo         4 2 W
31-Dec-90 Vs Quebec       6 3 W
31-Dec-92 @ St. Louis    1 5 L
31-Dec-95 @ Buffalo    5 2 W
31-Dec-97 @ Colorado     1 3 L
31-Dec-98 @ Chicago    0 1 L
31-Dec-02 @ Buffalo     1 0 Wot
31-Dec-03 @ Pittsburgh 6 1 W
31-Dec-07 @ Carolina    4 1 W
31-Dec-08 Vs Florida 2:00   

(The Isles were supposed to play in Chicago on December 31, 1978, but that game was snowed out -- one of only five postponements in Islander history)

In the Isles last home game on NY Eve, Derek King scored four goals, including an empty netter, as the Isles defeated Quebec 6-3 in 1990.

The Isles have ended NY Eve in overtime three times, winning in 1985 (Mikko Makela) and 2002 (Jason Blake) and losing in 1986 (Tomas Sandstrom).

The Isles have won once by shutout (Osgood in 2002) and lost once by shutout (Thibault in 1998).


 Forever1940 is the nom de plume of Eric Hornick. Eric has worked the Stanley Cup Finals four times, and celebrated his 26th anniversary as the statistician on Islander home telecasts on January 21, 2008.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Not just bad -- historical

Upon further review, the Islanders record when leading after two periods is even worse that I thought. (They are 8-4-1). The four losses are more than they had in any full season since at least 1995-96.

(The Isles lost only once in each of the two seasons under Nolan when leading after two periods; they lost only once-total when leading after two periods under Laviolette.)


Forever1940 is the nom de plume of Eric Hornick. Eric has worked the Stanley Cup Finals four times, and celebrated his 26th anniversary as the statistician on Islander home telecasts on January 21, 2008.

Monday, December 29, 2008

Stat Trick: Rangers 5, Isles 4

Another day, another Ricky injury. Hunter hurt during the game as well. Oh well... on to the trick.

1. Not a good sign when the Isles lose at MSG -- only their second regulation loss in the last 11 visits (8-2-1).

2. The Isles have now lost 10 straight road games (0-9-1). It's the first time since the 72-73 season that the Isles have lost 10 straight on the road; they lost 15 and 13 straight that season.

3. The Rangers scored 4 goals in the third to erase a 2-1 Isles advantage. The Isles drop to 8-4-1 when they lead after two periods; no other team has lost more than twice in regulation when leading after 2. (The Isles were 22-1-2 last season when leading after 2)

...and a few more

4. Mike Sillinger had the game's first goal, and the only one of the first period. The Isles dropped to a mind-boggling 2-5-1 when leading after 1 period. They are the only NHL team with a losing record when leading after 1; Tampa (6-4-3) is the only other team to have won fewer than 1/2 the games that they led after 20 minutes. (The Isles were 16-3-4 last season when leading after 1)


5. The Isles scored in the last minute of the 2nd period (Okposo) and 3rd (Comrie). Comrie's goal was the third in 2 games with the goalie on the bench. The Rangers got a goal from Gomez in the 2nd period with Lundqvist pulled for a 6th attacker; the Rangers had 45 seconds of delayed penalty time without the Isles gaining control of the puck.

6. Neither team scored on the pp. The Isles were 0-2 and the Rangers were 0-5.

7. There were 4 goals in a 2:47 span from late in the 2nd period to early in the 3rd. Each team scored twice in that stretch.

8. After only one fight (Thompson/Voros) in the first two games, there were two tonight (Fritz/Orr and Comrie/Dawes).

9. Josh Bailey played only 7:34 - only Orr and Fritz played less. If he's not playing here, wouldn't have he been better off playing for Canada in the World Jrs tonight? (Canada beat Germany 5-1).

10. Looking ahead: The Isles host Florida in a New Year's Eve matinee. Florida has owned the Isles of late, winning the last 6 games (one in overtime). The Isles will be looking to end the month with a 2nd win; with the exception of three October's, the Isles have won at least two games in every full month of their history, except for December 1972. The Isles were 1-12-2 that month. (They are 1-10-2 so far this December.) With Howie Rose enjoying some much deserved time off, Jiggs McDonald returns to the Isles booth to call this game and the four that follow it. It's the third straight season that Jiggs has filled in for Howie. Jiggs called Islander games for 15 seasons (1980-81 to 1994-95).


Forever1940 is the nom de plume of Eric Hornick. Eric has worked the Stanley Cup Finals four times, and celebrated his 26th anniversary as the statistician on Islander home telecasts on January 21, 2008.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Stat Trick: Buffalo 4, Isles 3 (Shootout)

A solid effort, two late goals, including one in the final seconds is worth a point, but the shootout goes Buffalo's way. On to the trick:

1. Jeff Tambellini scored a goal! It's NHL goal #5 for Tambellini, his first in 44 games dating back to last February 12. Josh Bailey earned his 9th assist on that goal; he's still looking for his first tally.

2. With the Isles trailing 3-1, the Isles got a pp-goal from Mike Comrie (18:34) and the equalizer from Chris Campoli(19:58). Both goals came with the Isles' net empty.

3. The Sabres needed just two rounds to win the shootout, scoring on both of their shots (Kotalik, Stafford) and stopping Park and Okposo.
Buffalo is now 2-0 in shootouts against the Isles, having also won on Long Island on Turkey Eve, 2005.

and a few more...

4. One night after scoring his 399th and 400th goals, BIll Guerin assisted on the two 6th attacker goals for the Isles.
.
5. Hecht, Pominville and MacArthur had the goals for Buffalo.

6. Trent Hunter had another strong game: 5 shots and 5 hits. Jermey Colliton was recalled to replace Mike Sillinger; he won 8 of 15 draws; his teammates lost 28 of 47.

7. According to the NHL, a shootout loss is still a loss, meaning that the Isles have lost 11 of their last 12 (1-9-2) and have lost 9 straight on the road (0-8-1) since their miraculous victory in Montreal three nights before Thanksgiving. The 9 straight road losses is the longest since a similar streak in 1998 (10 straight winless).

8. How did Derek Roy not get a star? Roy, a forward, played 28:08 (over four minutes more than any other Sabre), and had 8 shots on goal. He also won 15 of 23 draws.

9. The Isles are now 1-1-1 vs. Buffalo this season (1-0-1 on the road). It's the first time since 03-04 that they've earned points in both trips to Buffalo.

10. Looking ahead: the Isles play their third game in four nights on Monday in Manhattan. The Isles have owned the Rangers at MSG for the last several seasons. They are 8-1-1 in their last 10 visits:

11-Apr-06 @ New York 3 2 W
3-Dec-06 @ New York 7 4 W
19-Dec-06 @ New York 4 3 W
9-Jan-07 @ New York 5 3 W
5-Mar-07 @ New York 1 2 Lso
19-Nov-07 @ New York 2 1 W
29-Nov-07 @ New York 2 4 L
4-Mar-08 @ New York 4 3 Wso
4-Apr-08 @ New York 4 3 Wso
4-Nov-08 @ New York 2 1 W

The game will air exclusively on Versus. Joe Beninati has the play-by-play. The Isles will be looking to avoid a 10th straight road loss. They've lost 10 straight on the road only twice in their history -- they lost 28 of 29 (1-28-0) on the road between November 26, 1972- March 31, 1973. There were 13 straight losses, a memorable 9-7 win over the Champion Bruins in the Garden, and then 15 more straight losses that season.


Forever1940 is the nom de plume of Eric Hornick. Eric has worked the Stanley Cup Finals four times, and celebrated his 26th anniversary as the statistician on Islander home telecasts on January 21, 2008.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Stat Trick: Isles 4, Leafs 1

If Boxing Day was Bill Murray's Ground Hog Day, the Isles would be in good shape. For the third straight year, the Isles spent Boxing Day at home, and for the third straight year they emerged victorious. On to the trick.

1. The Isles improved to 10 wins, 1 loss (a one-goal defeat to Hartford in 1985) and two ties at home on Boxing Day. (Contrast that with the Canucks -- who are 0-6-2 in their last eight games on Boxing Day at home, and haven't won in BC since 1973! Vancouver trails tonight, as well)

2. Bill Guerin is the 8th American and 79th player overall to reach 400 goals; he had two goals tonight, including one that was erroneously initially credited to Josh Bailey.

3. Kyle Okposo set a career high with his 3rd goal of the season (he had 2 in nine games last season). Okposo, playing his 31st NHL game, recorded the first two point game of his career.

...and a few more

4. Rick DiPietro knocked Billy Smith out of the Isles record books. DiPietro recorded his 14th point (all assists), breaking the record he shared with Smitty (1-12-13). More importantly, DiPietro recorded his first win since February 28th, and the 117th of his career.

5. Jeff Tambellini celebrated his 100th Islander game with an assist. (He has 4-16-20 in 104 NHL games with all points coming as an Islander.) His dad played in 107 games for the Isles (24-25-49).

6. Andy Hilbert broke a bone in his foot blocking a shot in the 2nd period; he did not return. Hilbert has played in every game this season.

7. Oh Canada. Six of the Isles' 11 wins (and 4 of their six home wins) have come against Canadian opponents. The Isles are 6-2 against teams North of the Border this season after going 5-9-1 last season. It's the first time since the lockout that the Isles have won at least six games against Canadian team. Six of the Isles' last seven wins have come against Canadian teams; the seventh was in Buffalo - a city that plays the Canadian anthem before home games.

8. Blake Comeau assisted on both third period goals; it's the first two assist game of his career.

9. The Isles are 7-1-1 in their last 9 and 11-2-1 in their last 14 games against the Leafs on Long Island.

10. Looking ahead: The Isles visit Buffalo on Saturday night. The teams have split two games this season, with the visitor winning on both occasions.


Forever1940 is the nom de plume of Eric Hornick. Eric has worked the Stanley Cup Finals four times, and celebrated his 26th anniversary as the statistician on Islander home telecasts on January 21, 2008.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Stat Trick: Atlanta 4, Isles 2

Some teams are good...some teams are bad... some are downright historical.  The current Isles are falling into that last group, but not for the right reasons... on to the trick.

1.  Ilya Kovalchuk celbrated his 500th NHL game by recording his 500th and 501st career point.

2. The Isles have now lost 10 straight (0-9-1).  It's their first 10 game losing streak since the 1997-98 season when they lost 10 straight (the last was in overtime, but you didn't get a point in those days) and then tied an 11th.  It's the sixth ten-game losing streak in club history.  The club record is 12, done in both 1972-73 (Phil Goyette was fired two weeks after this streak was broken with the famous win in Boston) and 1988-89 (Terry Simpson lost his job eight games into this streak).

3.  The Isles have opened a month winless in 10 games for only the second time in history, and the first time since December 1972.
 
...and a few more....
 
4.  Bryan Little recorded his third two-goal game of the season.
 
5.  Andy Hilbert recorded his 8th goal of the season at 16:48 of the second.  It ended a goal-less streak of 133:20 for the Isles.  Hilbert had eight goals in each of his prior two seasons with the Isles.
 
6.  Sean Bergenheim recorded his first goal in 15 games when he scored shorthanded to tie the game early in the third period.  It was his 2nd shortie of the season.
 
7.  Jeff Tambellini 0-for 43.  Enough said.  Except for this.  21-year-old Brett Sutter, (Darryl's son, and Duane/Brent's nephew) scored in his NHL debut tonight.
 
8.  Josh Bailey 0-for-20.   Two assists in his last 12 games.  Explain again why he's not playing for Windsor... or at least in the World Junior Championships.
 
9.  This is the 10th time in their history that the Isles have gone 10 games without a win. (9 of these were in one season; the 10th straddled the first two seasons in Isles history.)  It's their longest winless streak since an 11 game streak in 1998-99 (0-10-1).  The original Isles suffered through a 15-game winless streak (0-12-3)
 
10.  Looking ahead:  Oh, Canada.  The Maple Leafs come to the Coliseum for Boxing Day on Friday.  The Isles own only ten wins this season -- five are against Canadian opponents (Ottawa 3, Vancouver 1, Montreal 1).  Since winning at MSG on November 4, the Isles are 5-1 against Canadian foes and 1-13-2 against American opponents.  The one win was in Buffalo -- a US border city that plays the Canadian anthem before home games.
 
MERRY CHRISTMAS! HAPPY CHANUKAH!

 Forever1940 is the nom de plume of Eric Hornick. Eric has worked the Stanley Cup Finals four times, and celebrated his 26th anniversary as the statistician on Islander home telecasts on January 21, 2008.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Stat Trick: Nashville 1, Isles 0

Hey, at least they didn't give up a third period goal... and no one was -5. On to the trick.

1. Jason Arnott played in his 1,000th NHL game.

2. Vernon Fiddler scored the game's only goal -- 6:48 into the first period.

3. Pekka Rinne recorded the shutout for Nashville - his third of the season. All three have come this month.

...and a few more.

4. It was the second time this season that the Isles have been shutout (Florida 10/18), and the 15th time in club history that they've been blanked 1-0. (They were last shutout 1-0 by the Panthers on the 25th anniversary cup celebration day last March).

5. Doug Weight missed most of the final two periods with an injury. Without him for most of the night, the Isles lost 38 of 64 face-offs.

6. Blake Comeau, a healthy scratch in Minnesota, played 16:13 more than the man he replaced (Mitch Fritz, who did not get off the bench in Minnesota).

7. It's the second time that the Isles have ever been blanked by the Preds. Tomas Vokoun shut them out on February 13, 2003.

8. The Isles have lost 9 straight (0-8-1) overall and 8 straight on the road (0-8). Their last road point came in the game Ryan O'Byrne put the puck into his own net for the tying goal in Montreal.

9. It's the 4th time in Isles history (and first time in 34 years) that they haven't won any of their first nine games in a month.
They were 0-9-2 to start December, 1972 ... 0-9 to open January, 1973, and 0-9 to begin March, 1974.

10. Up next: The Isles return home on Tuesday to face Atlanta. The Thrashers already hold two victories over the Islanders this season.

It doesn't mean anything but... Jeff Tambellini scored a goal for the third straight AHL game tonight as Bridgeport lost to Binghamton 4-1. Tambellini's conditioning stint is now over. He has 0 goals in his last 42 NHL games and only 4 goals in 102 career NHL games (98 of them for the Islanders).
Forever1940 is the nom de plume of Eric Hornick. Eric has worked the Stanley Cup Finals four times, and celebrated his 26th anniversary as the statistician on Islander home telecasts on January 21, 2008.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Stat Trick: Minnesota 4, Isles 1

Congrats to Colton Gillies on his first NHL goal -- it was the winner.  On to the trick:

1.  The Isles remain winless in December (0-7-1; that's 8 straight losses according to the NHL)

2.  The Isles have now gone pointless in 7 straight road games (0-7-0).. They are an abysmal 5-11-1 on the road; their 11 points in 17 road games equals their fewest since 1995-96.

3.  The Isles were held to a season-low 16 shots.

... a few more


4.  The Isles have lost three straight to Minnesota over the last 4 seasons...with three different coaches (Sterling, Nolan, Gordon).  The Isles own only 1 win in St. Paul -- in 2002.

5.  Doug Weight recorded career point #998, an assist on the only Islander goal.  It came on a 5-on-3.

6.  Mitch Fritz dressed, but he did not play.

7.  Mike Comrie (18:52) and Kyle Okposo (18:01, -2) both returned to the lineup, but Andy Sutton broke his foot blocking a Marek Zidlicky shot in the first period.

8. The Isles have lost 19 games; last season they didn't lose their 19th game until January 19th (23-19-5)

9. With the loss, the Isles fall to 10-19-3; they remain tied with Tampa for the fewest points in the NHL, but the Lightning have played one fewer game.

10.  Up next -- the Isles face Nashville for the first time in 796 days tomorrow night in Music City.  The Preds have won the last three games between the teams.

 Forever1940 is the nom de plume of Eric Hornick. Eric has worked the Stanley Cup Finals four times, and celebrated his 26th anniversary as the statistician on Islander home telecasts on January 21, 2008.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Stat Trick: Columbus 3, Isles 1

1.  The Isles have been outscored 30-11 over the last 6 games, all losses.  How bad is that?  The last time the Isles were outscored by 19 goals in a six-game period was in the 1995-96 season:

25-Mar-96 @ Montreal 1 4 L
26-Mar-96 Vs Washington  1 7 L
30-Mar-96 @ Hartford 1 3 L
31-Mar-96 Vs New York  1 4 L
2-Apr-96 Vs Philadelphia 2 6 L
5-Apr-96 @ Ottawa 2 4 L

when they were outscored by 20 goals in a 6-game period.  The Isles have also lost six straight on the road.

2.  Can't say the Isles didn't come out hitting- outhitting the BJ's 41-16.

3,  Richard Park had the Isles' only goal -it was the Isles 7th SH goal this season.  Only Philadelphia (11) has more.

...and a few more.

4.  Fredrik Modin is heating up for Columbus; he now has 4 goals in 6 games. Jason Chimera and Andrew Murray had the other Columbus goals.

5.  Joey  Mac Donald allowed 3 goals; fewest since the win over Ottawa whne he allowed 2.  It's the first time since November 11 that he allowed three goals or fewer and lost.

6.  The Isles remain winless in Columbus (4 losses, a tie and a shootout loss).  Counting a loss and a tie in Cleveland in 1978, the Isles are winless in eight trips to Ohio since a 6-3 win in Cleveland on March 27, 1977.  Really.

7.  The Isles now have 11 points in their first 16 road games, equalling their lowest total since the 1995-96 season.

8.  The Isles last lost six straight, all in regulation time, Jan 22-Feb 7, 2008.  They then lost in overtime on February 9th to extend the losing streak to 7.

9.  It's the first time since February, 2000 that the Isles have not won at least once in the first six games of a calendar month.  (The club record of consecutive non-wins to start a month is 11, in December 1972 (0-9-2))

10.Looking ahead:
Tuesday's game is on Versus as the Isles return home to face Washington.  The Capitals began this six game losing streak for the Isles by scoring three in the third to beat the Isles on December 4.  The Isles have won 6 of the last 7 Coliseum matchups between the teams (6-1-0), losing only last Columbus Day, 2-1.   Joe Beninati and Billy Jaffe should have the call.  (Beninati is the voice of the Caps when he's not working for Versus) 


 Forever1940 is the nom de plume of Eric Hornick. Eric has worked the Stanley Cup Finals four times, and celebrated his 26th anniversary as the statistician on Islander home telecasts on January 21, 2008.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Re: Stat Trick: Flyers 4, Isles 3 (correction)

Probably would be a good idea to get the score of the game correct.  Flyers 4, Isles 3.




a Stat Trick delayed is a Stat Trick denied...

1. The Isles have now lost seven straight to Flyers (0-5-2) and six straight in Philadelphia (0-5-1).

2.  Yann Danis has started twice for the Isles and blown multiple-goal leads in both.  The Isles led 2-0, as Hilbert and Weight scored in the first 10 1/2 minutes.  Hilbert, who led the Isles with six shots,. now has has seven goals; he scored eight times in each of his first two seasons with the Isles.

3.  It's the Isles first loss on the back-end of a back-to-back since losing in Florida 4-2 on March 12.  The Isles had won six straight, including all four this season.

...and a few more...

4. Who or what is a Darroll Powe?  He scored his first NHL goal.  Does it seem like a player does that to the Isles almost every night?
 
5.  Mitch Fritz played just 2:18, but it was enough time for him to record 7 pen mins -- five of them in a scrap with Riley Cote.

6.  Simon Gagne had the winning goal -- only the fifth of his 14 goals that he's scored at home.

Forever1940 is the nom de plume of Eric Hornick. Eric has worked the Stanley Cup Finals four times, and celebrated his 26th anniversary as the statistician on Islander home telecasts on January 21, 2008.

Stat Trick: Penguins 9, Isles 2

How bad could it get?  Well, that's what tonight's trick is all about.

1.  The Isles allowed nine goals for the first time since a 9-6 loss in Toronto on December 19, 2005 -- that loss was the beginning of the end for Steve Stirling as Islander coach-- he'd lose 9 of his final 11 games as Islander coach.

2.  The Isles allowed a hat trick to Petr Sykora; his first in 871 NHL games.  The goals were #'s 283-285 of his NHL career.  He had scored more goals than any active player without potting three in a game (Larry Murphy holds the all-time record with 287); his 42 2-goals games without a career hat trick were also an NHL record . (although one source says that he only had 38 2-goal games).

3.  With Sykora completing his hat trick, Shane Doan now has the most career goals without a hat trick among active players --240, or one more than Mike Sillinger.

...lots, lots more

4.  The Isles also gave up the first career hat trick to Pascal Dupuis as well. (According to the media guide), it's the 4th time the Isles have allowed two hat tricks in a game:

10/20/81 Los Angeles (Dionne/Kelly)
11/23/82 Minnesota (Broten/Payne)
12/18/86 Philadelphia (Poulin/Kerr)

5.It's the Isles first loss by 7 goals since an 8-1 defeat in Toronto last October that was the beginning of the end for Wade Dubielewicz as an Islander.

6.  It's the 2nd worst Isles loss ever to Pittsburgh.  They lost to the Pens 9-1 in 1972.
 
7.  Searching for a positive -- the Isles have scored a power play in 5 straight games (all losses).  In fact, they've score a pp goal in each of their last 7 losses, dating back to the Turkey eve loss to the Pens that will go down as the turning point of the season.

8,  The Isles allowed 3 pp goals for the fourth time this season.  The 3 pp goals helped keep down the minuses, but Sillinger, Comeau and Meyer were all -3.

9. The Isles have allowed 27 goals in the last 5 games; they last did that in December 2005; they haven't allowed more than 27 over a five game span since 1991-92!  They've allowed 36 goals in the last 7 games  (first time since 1991-92) and 41 goals in the last 8 games (first time since 1992-93).

10. The Isles were outscored 5-0 at 5 on 5.  They scored a pp goal and a 4-on-4 goal.

11.  The Isles have lost 4 straight to Pittsburgh (0-3-1) and 6 out of 7.  They've also lost 6 of their last 7 in Pittsburgh.

12.  The Isles have been outscored 27-10 over the last five games.  The last time that they had a -17 differential over five games was in 2003.  The streak reversed itself with the blizzard win over the Hawks, the first in a 29-16-9-4 stretch to finish that season.

12.  Looking ahead:  Can it get worse?  Of course it can.  The Isles head to Columbus on Saturday.  The Isles have never beaten the Blue Jackets in Columbus (3 losses, a tie, and a shootout loss).   The Isles have won their last two games against the BJ's, both at home, including a 4-3 overtime win earlier this season.



Forever1940 is the nom de plume of Eric Hornick. Eric has worked the Stanley Cup Finals four times, and celebrated his 26th anniversary as the statistician on Islander home telecasts on January 21, 2008.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Fw: Stat Trick: Flyers 4, Isles 2



a Stat Trick delayed is a Stat Trick denied...

1. The Isles have now lost seven straight to Flyers (0-5-2) and six straight in Philadelphia (0-5-1).

2.  Yann Danis has started twice for the Isles and blown multiple-goal leads in both.  The Isles led 2-0, as Hilbert and Weight scored in the first 10 1/2 minutes.  Hilbert, who led the Isles with six shots,. now has has seven goals; he scored eight times in each of his first two seasons with the Isles.

3.  It's the Isles first loss on the back-end of a back-to-back since losing in Florida 4-2 on March 12.  The Isles had won six straight, including all four this season.

...and a few more...

4. Who or what is a Darroll Powe?  He scored his first NHL goal.  Does it seem like a player does that to the Isles almost every night?
 
5.  Mitch Fritz played just 2:18, but it was enough time for him to record 7 pen mins -- five of them in a scrap with Riley Cote.

6.  Simon Gagne had the winning goal -- only the fifth of his 14 goals that he's scored at home.

Forever1940 is the nom de plume of Eric Hornick. Eric has worked the Stanley Cup Finals four times, and celebrated his 26th anniversary as the statistician on Islander home telecasts on January 21, 2008.

Stat Trick: Flyers 4, Isles 2

a Stat Trick delayed is a Stat Trick denied...

1. The Isles have now lost seven straight to Flyers (0-5-2) and six straight in Philadelphia (0-5-1).

2.  Yann Danis has started twice for the Isles and blown multiple-goal leads in both.  The Isles led 2-0, as Hilbert and Weight scored in the first 10 1/2 minutes.  Hilbert, who led the Isles with six shots,. now has has seven goals; he scored eight times in each of his first two seasons with the Isles.

3.  It's the Isles first loss on the back-end of a back-to-back since losing in Florida 4-2 on March 12.  The Isles had won six straight, including all four this season.

...and a few more...

4. Who or what is a Darroll Powe?  He scored his first NHL goal.  Does it seem like a player does that to the Isles almost every night?
 
5.  Mitch Fritz played just 2:18, but it was enough time for him to record 7 pen mins -- five of them in a scrap with Riley Cote.

6.  Simon Gagne had the winning goal -- only the fifth of his 14 goals that he's scored at home.

Forever1940 is the nom de plume of Eric Hornick. Eric has worked the Stanley Cup Finals four times, and celebrated his 26th anniversary as the statistician on Islander home telecasts on January 21, 2008.

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Stat Trick: Toronto 4, Isles 2

It's five (regulation losses) in six games for the 2nd time this season... paging the draft lottery board...on to the trick.
 
1.  No Canada -- tonight's loss stops an Islander five game winning streak against Canadian opponents; it's their first win in three games in Canada this season.
 
2.  Old friend Jason Blake had the winning goal and later recorded his 200th NHL assist.  He had three points on the night, giving him six points in his last three games.
 
3.  The Isles were outscored 1-0 in the third period and have been outscored 43-20 in the third period this season.
 
a few more...
 
4.  Bill Guerin now has a three game point streak.  His goal was #398 of his career, and the 11th of the season, tying Trent Hunter for the club lead.
 
5.  It was the 1,200th loss in Isles history.  The Isles have 1,233 wins.
 
6.  Mike Sillinger's goal was his first since January 24 against Boston.  He is 11 goals shy of 250.  His goal came on the power play and was unusual -- neither Weight nor Streit was on the ice.
 
7.  Freddy Meyer played in his 100th game as an Islander; it was his shot that Guerin tipped home for the Isles' first goal.
 
8.  Joey MacDonald played in his 17th straight game--the Isles are 8-8-1 in that streak.
 
9.  Trent Hunter had 4 shots and 5 hits for the Islanders.  The Leafs' Pavel Kubina attempted five shots on goal -- all five were blocked by the Isles.
 
10.  Up next: the Isles are in Philly Tuesday night for a Versus-exclusive telecast. (7pm; no pre-game).  It's the fifth time that the Isles are playing on consecutive days.  They are 4-0 on the back-end and have won six straight back-ends, going back to last season.  They haven't had a longer back-end streak since winning seven back-ends in 1981-82.  The club record is 9.  The Isles however have lost six straight to Philadelphia (0-4-2) and have lost five straight in Philly (0-4-1).
 
Forever1940 is the nom de plume of Eric Hornick. Eric has worked the Stanley Cup Finals four times, and celebrated his 26th anniversary as the statistician on Islander home telecasts on January 21, 2008.

Sunday, December 07, 2008

Stat Trick: Atlanta 5, Isles 1

Ten days and one period ago, all the Isles had to do was hold off the Penguins in the third period to get back to NHL .500.  Four losses in five games suggest that NHL .500 may be a long ways off.  On to the trick:

1.  The Thrashers have outscored the Isles 8-1 in the last 4 periods, and 5-0 in the third period this season.

2.  Atlanta has beaten the Isles in regulation in consecutive games for the first time since winning the first two games between the franchises in 1999.

3.  Bill Guerin' first minute pp goal was the 397th goal of his NHL career.

and a few more....

4.  The Isles have won consecutive home games only once since February.

5.  The penalties started early and ended late.  The Isles earned a power play only 19 seconds into the game; there was a scrum that produced 42 minutes of penalties with 19 seconds to play.

6.  Ilya Kovalchuk had a goal and two assists for Atlanta.

7.  The Isles have allowed 24 goals in their last five games -- they haven't allowed more in a five-game stretch since December 2005.

8. Blake Comeau had three shots and three assists in his NHL season debut.  He played Friday night for Bridgeport, where his game was reffed by Jamie Koharski.  Jamie's dad, Don, was one of tonight's refs.

9. Josh Bailey led the Isles forwards in first period ice-time (7:16) but played only 9:20 the rest of the way.

10.  Brendan Witt had eight hits and five blocked shots.  Three of the blocks came on one shift, all on shots by Kovalchuk.

Up next:  The Isles begin a 4-game trip in Toronto.  The Isles won the series last year, 5 points to 4.  They went 5-3-0 against the Leafs under Nolan; the Leafs are the only Eastern Conference team that the Isles have not played this season.

 Forever1940 is the nom de plume of Eric Hornick. Eric has worked the Stanley Cup Finals four times, and celebrated his 26th anniversary as the statistician on Islander home telecasts on January 21, 2008.

Monday, December 01, 2008

Sad but true: the Peter Mannino stat story

Peter Mannino made his NHL debut for the Islanders on Friday, mopping up for Joey MacDonald.  Hopefully, he'll get some additional NHL opportunities.  If he doesn't, he'll have some of the worst career numbers for a goalie in NHL history.

According to NHL.com, 637 people have played goal in the NHL.  (Note that stats for some early years of the NHL are incomplete.) 
Only three have higher career GAA's than Mannino's 13.81:

Greg Redquest      13.85  Penguins 1977-78
James Stewart Jr   15.00  Boston 1979-80
Martin Houle          27.27  Flyers 2006-07  (It's actually listed as 30.00 on his bio of NHL.com.  The difference is whether you reflect the                                                                     seconds he played or just the minutes.)

You could argue that Mammino and Redquest are actually tied.  Mannino is credited with 13:02 of ice-time, while Redquest was credited with 13 minutes.  Both players allowed three goals.

Save percentage became an official stat about 20 years.  The career totals are shown on NHL.com only for players whose entire career happeend while save percentage was an official stat.  Of all those players, Mannino has the worst save percentage of all-time:  .625  (stopping 5 of 8 shots)


 Forever1940 is the nom de plume of Eric Hornick. Eric has worked the Stanley Cup Finals four times, and celebrated his 26th anniversary as the statistician on Islander home telecasts on January 21, 2008.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Stat Tricks: Boston 7, Isles 2 ; Isles 4, Ottawa 2

Perhaps the Isles could get Great Adventure to sponsor them.  This season is looking like a terrific roller coaster ride... high, high highs, and low, low lows.  Just like you'll find in today's tricks:

Isles v Boston.

1.  The Isles allowed 7 goals for the first time since Columbus Day as they suffered their most one-side loss to the Bruins in 17 years.  THe Bruins scored five times in the third period.

2.  Peter Mannino made his NHL debut, mopping up for Joey Mac Donald.  His NHL numbers after allowing 3 goals in 13:02.  GAA of 13.85, save percentage of .625  He was returned to the Sound Tigers after the game and lost to Worcester on Saturday, allowing a goal to Claude Lemieux.  It was Lemieux' first AHL goal since the 1985-86 season.  (Mannino turned two during that season.)

3.  Team effort:  Seven Bruins had two points.

4.  The Isles scored a pp goal for the fourth straight game, but scoring only once on the pp ended a streak of three straight 2-pp goal games.

Isles vs. Ottawa

1.  Never say never.  The Isles beat the Senators for a third straight time, and for a third time in a season, for the first time ever.

2.  The Isles are 4-0-0 on the back-end of two in two days (also beating St. Louis, the Rangers and Buffalo) this season.  They've won the back-end of 6 straight, going back to last season.  (The Isles won their first six back-ends in 2006-07).

3.  Trent Hunter's empty-netter gives him 10 goals on the season to lead the team.  He scored only 12 last season and didn't score his 10th until March 4th.  Hunter has 3 goals in the last 4 games, and finishes November with 6 goals.  Hilbert and Hunter each had a goal and an assist.

4. Frederic Meyer IV recorded the first two-goal and first three-point game of his career.  Isles defenders combined for 2 goals and 4 assists.

5. Heatley, Spezza, Alfredsson combined for 5 points on Ottawa's two goals.

6.  According to the official stats, the Isles were credited with 24 blocked shots.  They began the night with the most in the NHL.  The Sens were credited with 38 hits, but only 4 in the final period -- the question is, "Did the Sens stop hitting?  or did the off-ice officials just stop counting"?

7.  Farewell to my font coordinator, Steve Daily, who's leaving MSG+ to join MLB-TV.

8.  The Isles finished November 8-6-1, despite losing 7 points (0-3-1) on games that they led going to the third period.  The Isles have put together 8 wins in consecutive November (8-5-1 last season); matching their most wins in November since 1987-88.  The Isles have strung together winning records in 4 consecutive November for the first time since 5 straight winning Novembers from 1983 to 1987.

9,  Josh Bailey went +1 in 17:41 of ice time.  It was his tenth game, triggering the first year of his entry contract.

10.  Up next: the Isles visit Washington on Wednesday.  After losing their first match-up last season, the Isles beat the Caps three straight times, including once in overtime and once in a shootout.  After going winless in 15 games in DC, the Isles are 5-1-1 in their last 7 trips to the nation's capital.

 Forever1940 is the nom de plume of Eric Hornick. Eric has worked the Stanley Cup Finals four times, and celebrated his 26th anniversary as the statistician on Islander home telecasts on January 21, 2008.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Stat Trick: Pittsburgh 5, Isles 3

For the better part of two periods, the Islanders beat the stuffing out of the Pens, but in the end it was the Islanders who were the turkeys. On to the trick:

1. Josh Bailey had his first 2-assist game. At one point he had credit on the third goal as well, but this was later changed.

2. Bill Guerin scored for the third straight game; he's 4 goals shy of 400. Guerin however was -4 and also did a bad penalty in the third period when he came to the defense of Doug Weight.

3. Weight did not play in the final 7 1/2 minutes. He did score on the power-play earlier in the game -- it was career goal # 270 (and point 991). Robert Gordon Orr also scored 270 NHL goals. Weight now has a seven-game point streak -- his longest since a 10-game streak in 2003-04.

4. Malkin and Crosby did it the Islanders again. Malkin recorded his third career hat trick and added an assist while Crosby had a goal and three assists. It was Malkin's third career hat trick

5. John Curry replaced Dany Sabourin in goal after Guerin's goal gave the Isles a 3-0 lead. He stopped all 11 shots and earned a win in his NHL debut.

6. The Isles have now lost 3 games in regulation that they led after two periods (6-3-1). They lost only two games in regulation that they led after 40 minutes in the past two seasons combined. No other team has lost more than 2.

7. The Isles scored two pp goals for the third straight game (6-14, 42.9%). They have 10 pp goals in the last 7 games after connecting for only 9 pp goals in the first 15 games. It's the first time since Jan/Feb 2006 that the Isles have connected for at least two pp goals in three straight games.

8. The Isles won 42 of 74 faceoffs, including 35 of the final 54. Jeremy Colliton won 13 of 18, while Bailey won 7 of 10.

9. The Isles fall to 4-7-1 at home, equaling their worst 12-game home start since 1999-2000.

10. Up next: a Friday MATINEE in Boston (faceoff at noon). It's the 8th straight season that the Isles have played on the day after Thanksgiving, and their second straight in Boston. They've gone 2-5-0 and have been outscored 21-11, including last year's 2-1 loss in Beantown.


HAPPY THANKSGIVING TO ALL!


Forever1940 is the nom de plume of Eric Hornick. Eric has worked the Stanley Cup Finals four times, and celebrated his 26th anniversary as the statistician on Islander home telecasts on January 21, 2008.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Stat Trick: Isles 4, Canadiens 3 (Shootout)

"That's why I love sports. Every day, you have a chance to see something you've never seen before." --John Sterling on Isles radio after MIke Bossy scored the 50th and 51st goals of his rookie season, the latter with 5 seconds to play, to give the Isles a come-from-behind win over Washington on their way to their first division title. (4/1/78) I saw the goal credited to Smith in 1979, and was at the game when Jose Theodore cemented a Habs win against the Isles with an empty-netter, but my 8 year old hadn't seen either of those as they happened. This one he did. On to tthe trick.

1. Ryan O'Byrne played 16:20, had 2 hits, 1 blocked shot, and an even rating. Of course he would have been +1 had he not put the puck into HIS OWN EMPTY NET to allow the Islanders to even the game on a delayed penalty late in the third period.

2. Bill Guerin was credited with the goal (he was the last Islander to touch the puck) and now has eight, as does Trent Hunter who scored earlier in the game.

3. The Isles scored twice on the power play for the secod straight game. That hadn't happened since December 31 2007 -January 3, 2008, and hadn't happen in consecutive games, both on the road, since December 2005.

and wait... there's more...

4. Doug Weight earned assists on both PP goals, giving him 17 assists on the season. Only five players in the NHL started the night with more than 17 assists: Malkin, Savard, Getzlaf, Crosby, and Henrik Sedin. Weight now has 13 pp points

5.The win breaks a six-game Islander losing streak to Montreal., dating back to a 3-2 win on February 24, 2007.

6.Josh Gorges scored his first goal as a Canadien (89 games + 12 playoff games). His only previous NHL goal came for the Sharks, against Detroit, on January 5. 2007.

7. The Isles lost 34 of 55 faceoffs. Jeremy Colliton was the only Isles success in the circle, winning 5 of 6.

8. THe Isles won the shootout 2-0, It was the first shoout out ever between the teams. RIchard Park, who also scored in regulation, had the deciding goal in the shootout. (Scott Gordon used the three Islander goal scorers in the shootout) Park is now 3-7 for his career in shootouts; all three have been deciding goals.

9. The Isles improve to 5-1 in their last six games. SInce opening 2-7-1, the Isles are 7-3-1.

10. Looking ahead: The Penguins viist the Coliseum in the now tradiitonal Turkey Eve game on Wednesday. This will be the eighth consecutive season that the Isles have played at home on Thanksgiving Eve. The Isles have won twice, lost in regulation twice, tied once, lost in overtime once and lost in a shootout once. (2-2-3) Overall the Isles are 6-3-3 on Thanksgiving Eve at home. The Pens rallied to beat the Isles in a disputed shootout earlier this month. The Isles are 2-5-1 in their last eight games against Crosby and Company.


Forever1940 is the nom de plume of Eric Hornick. Eric has worked the Stanley Cup Finals four times, and celebrated his 26th anniversary as the statistician on Islander home telecasts on January 21, 2008.

Stat Trick: Isles 4, Buffalo 2.

A stat trick delayed is a stat trick denied. On to the trick.

1. The Isles went 2-7-1 in their opening 10 games, but are 6-3-1 in their second 10. They were outscored 37-25 in the first 10, but have outscored their opponents 27-26 in the second 10.

2. The Isles improve to 4-4-1 on the road; it's their second best 9-game road start since going 7-2 in the first year under Laviolette. (The Isles were 5-3-1 in their first nine on the road two seasons ago.

3. The Isles won the middle period, 1-0, despite being outshot 18-2.

...and a few more.

4. Andy Hilbert scored for the second straight game and now has five goals on the season. Hilbert last scored in consecutive games on April 15-17, 2006, when he tallied in both ends of a home and home for Pittsburgh AGAINST THE ISLANDERS. Hilbert has 5 goals on the season (on pace for 20); he's never scored more than 12 goals in an NHL season.

5. Jon Sim is becoming a regular Cy Young. He's 5-1 on the season (goals/assists) and is 57-47 in his career.

6. Mark Streit also recorded his fifth goal of the season, giving the Isles five players with at least five goals. Streit's goal was a pp-empty netter. All five of his goals have come on special teams (4pp, 1 sh). Among NHL defensemen, only Mike Green has more pp goals (6) and special teams goals (6). Ten of Streit's 14 points have come on special teams.

7. The Isles were outshot 37-26; all but two Sabres had at least one shot on goal. One of the two who didn't, Andrew Peters, took a shot to his head.

8. Jeremy Colliton had a good season debut. Recalled to replace the injured Frans Nielsen, Colliton won eight of 12 draws and was credited for a team-high five hits. Colliton has gone 18 straight games without an NHL point (since earning an assist on April 18, 2006).

9. It was the Isles second win in their last seven trips to Buffalo (2-5-0).

10. Up next: the road trip concludes Monday in Montreal. The Isles will be looking to win consecutive road games for the first time this season. The Isles have lost 6-straight to Montreal, beginning with the loss in the game DiPietro suffered a concussion in a collision with Steve Begin in 2007. Of all the losses, perhaps the latest was the most memorable, as Les Habitants erased a 4-1 deficit and beat the Isles 5-4 on November 1. Plekanac and Kovalev each had two goals and two assists in that game.


Forever1940 is the nom de plume of Eric Hornick. Eric has worked the Stanley Cup Finals four times, and celebrated his 26th anniversary as the statistician on Islander home telecasts on January 21, 2008.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Stat Trick: New Jersey 5, Isles 2

The stars were all aligned for an Isle win in Newark tonight; 3 straight wins, 3 straight days off, and going against a Devil team that had played last night. So much for the stars. On to the trick:

1. After earning points in 7 of 8 game slast season, the Isles drop to 0-2-0 against New Jersey, with both losses on the road, this season.

2. Jamie Langenbrunner and Zach Parise each had three assists. Parise leads the Devils in both goals (12) and points (23).

3. Frans Nielsen suffered apparent head and lower body injury when he was elbowed by Mike Mottau in the third period. It will be interesting to see whether Mottau is suspended, and if so, for how long.

... a few more

4. The Devils scored five goals against the Isles for the first time in 36 games, covering over 5 1/2 years (Devils 6, Isles 0 -- March 30, 2003).

5. Mitch Fritz was in the line-up, replacing the injured Okposo. Fritz saw only 2:30 minutes of ice-time, including only one shift in the 2nd --the 23 second shift in which the Devils responded to the Isles' goal -- and did not play in the third.

6. The Isles lost 32 of 50 faceoffs; rookie Josh Bailey had an awful night in the circle, losing 9 of 10. Travis Zajac won 14 of 17 for New Jersey.

7. Part of it may reflect a difference in how "hits" are accounted for in different buildings, but the Isles were credited with only 3 for the entire game. (NJ had 11.)

8. Ex- Isle Kevin Weekes picked up the 100th win of his career; 10 of those wins came for the Islanders.

9.Joey Mac Donald made his 9th straight start (Peter Mannino dressed for the first time, as his back-up.) He allowed five goals in a game for only the second time this season (Columbus Day vs. Buffalo was the first).

10. Looking ahead: the Isles face the struggling Sabres in Buffalo on Saturday; the Isles have lost five of their last six games in Buffalo.

Forever1940 is the nom de plume of Eric Hornick. Eric has worked the Stanley Cup Finals four times, and celebrated his 26th anniversary as the statistician on Islander home telecasts on January 21, 2008.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Stat Trick: Isles 2, Vancouver 1 (SO)

Uh, oh.  Don't look now, but the Isles are closer to a playoff spot (2 points) than they are to the first pick in the draft (3 points).  Any they beat that Luongo kid too.  On to the trick:

1.  Many people could tell you that the Islanders have won three straight games for the first time since a six-game win streak last February. But only on the trick do you get these:

--The Isles have won three straight games against Canadian opponents for the first time since beating Montreal and Toronto twice each in a three-week period in February, 2007
-- The Isles have won three straight, all against Canadian opponents for the first time since beating Vancouver, Montreal and Winnipeg in a four-daystretch in January, 1990.  Those were the final three games of a 9-game win streak -- the Isles have not had a nine game iwnning streak since.

2.  The Isles have allowed only 4 goals in their current 3-game win streak.  The last time they did that was in the final three-games of their six-game win streak last February.

3.  Doug Weight padded his team scoring lead with his 4th goal and 16th point.  Weight, who has recorded a point in three straight games, now has 3 pp goals.  He has a point on 10 of the Isles 13 pp goals this season.

...and a few more

4.  The teams played a scoreless third period tonight.  The Isles have allowed 25 third period goals (most in the NHL) while Vancouver has allowed only eight (fewest in the NHL).

5.  The second period has been good to the Isles this season; they've now outscored thier combined opponents 16-13.

6.  The Isles won for the first time this season after trailing after 1 period (1-4-1) while the Canucks failed to win after leading after 1 period for the first time (7-0-1).

7.  The Isles improve to 3-1-0 against the West while the Canucks are now 1-3-1 against the East.

8.  The Isles are noe 23-12 all-time in shootouts, and are 12-4 at home.  The Isles have lost exactly once in a shootout at home in each season including this one.  Frans Nielsen had the only goal of the shootout; he's now 2-3 in shootouts.

9.  Andy Sutton appeared in his 500th NHL game.

10  Pavol Demitra continued his point-a-game pace against the Isles; he has 8 goals and 10 assists in 18 games vs the Isles.


 Forever1940 is the nom de plume of Eric Hornick. Eric has worked the Stanley Cup Finals four times, and celebrated his 26th anniversary as the statistician on Islander home telecasts on January 21, 2008.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Stat Trick: Isles 3, Ottawa 2

The last time the Isles opened a season by beating the Sens in their first two meetings, Mike Milbury was in his first year as Islander coach. In fact, in the first of those wins in 1995-96, Don Maloney was still the Islander General Manager. On to the trick:


1. Joey MacDonald had another strong night in goal, making 38 saves--a season high. He's had more than 38 saves only once in an NHL game--this past April Fools Day against the Devils.

2. The Isles are now 4-2 in their last six games against Ottawa; it's their best stretch against the Sens since going 4-1-3 in the first eight games between the squads.

3. Trent Hunter filled up the box score, even though he didn't had a point. He had six shots on goal (plus 6 more that were blocked or missed the net) and four hits.

...and a bunch more

4. The Isles are 4-2-1 in their last 7 (after opening 2-7-1). It's their best seven game stretch since following up an OT loss with six straight wins last February.

5. The Isles improve to 3-6-1 at home, winning in regulation for the first time since the season opener.

6. The Isles were outscored 2-1 in the third, and have been outscored 25-14 in the third period this season. The Isles were outshot 11-8 in the third and have been outshot 197-142 in the third period this season.

7. The Isles now had 6 pp goals at home and 6 on the road, but they've had 18 fewer chances on the road (6-50, 6-32). Three of their 12 goals have come in the two games against Ottawa.

8. Tim Jackman recorded seven penalty minutes in his fight with Chris Neil --Neil left the game and did not return. Before the fight, Jackman had more goals (1) than penalty minutes (0) -- a stat this is not likely to recur again this season. Jackman later recorded an assist on Campoli's game winner.

9. The Isles have now scored 22 goals 5-on-5 and 22 goals in all other situations. They've allowed 36 goals 5-on-5 and 18 in other situations.

10. The Sens were 15-2-0 after 17 games last season; 6-9-2 this year.

11. The Isles had 31 shots, despite having only 1 shot in the first 8:15 (it came from their own zone, 133 ft away) and only one shot in the final 15 minutes.

Finally, a look ahead--- the Canucks will visit the Coliseum on Monday. Scott Gordon will be the fifth different man to coach the Isles in the last five games between the clubs:

11-Mar-03 - Laviolette
3-Feb-04 - Stirling
14-Jan-06 - Shaw
8-Jan-08 - Nolan
17-Nov-08 - Gordon

The Isles are 1-2-1 in the previous 4, with the win coming on an Aucoin overtime goal in 2004.

Forever1940 is the nom de plume of Eric Hornick. Eric has worked the Stanley Cup Finals four times, and celebrated his 26th anniversary as the statistician on Islander home telecasts on January 21, 2008.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Stat Trick: Isles 3, Ottawa 1

I don't how many people saw it because there was this football game going on, but the Islanders went up to Ottawa and won for the 2nd straight time... on to the trip.

1. It's only the 2nd time the Isles have won 2 straight in Ottawa. They won their first two trips to Canada's capital on January 17 1993 and November 17 1993.

2. The Isles are now 4-2 in their last six trips to Canada after winning only twice in their previous 21 games North of the Border.

3. The Isles played the final 4:16 shorthanded due to an elbowing penalty to Thomas Pock, and played short 8:16 of the final 12:22. Despite a FIlip Kuba pp goal, the Sens are 3-last 26 on the power play.

...and a few more

4. Ottawa failed to score on a 6 skater-on-3 situation in the game's final 46 seconds.

5. Okposo (Bailey, Campoli) was the scoring on the Isles' first goal. If it repeats that way 10 years from now..and for the Islanders...there will be plenty of good times on Long Island. Bailey played 13:10 in his second NHL game.

6. The Sens outshot the Isles 16-5 in the third, but it was the Isles who scored the only goal -- their first in any of the five games they've led after 40 minutes this month.

7. The Isles improve to 3-3-1 on the road; they're only 2-6-1 at home.

8. This is the front end of the first home-and-home ever between the teams; the Isles do not play consecutive games against the same opponent again this season.

9. Trent Hunter now has a team-leading 7 goals; he needs only five more to match last season's total.


Forever1940 is the nom de plume of Eric Hornick. Eric has worked the Stanley Cup Finals four times, and celebrated his 26th anniversary as the statistician on Islander home telecasts on January 21, 2008.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Stat Trick: Flyers 3, Isles 1

Good effort. Bad power play. Familiar result. On to the trick:

1. Isles are now 2-6-1 at home; equaling their worst start at home since 1989-90.

2. Josh Bailey played 12:35 in his NHL debut. The good: 7-4 on faceoffs. The bad: -1. The ugly: 2 penalties -- one cost the Isles momentum in the first period; the second cost the Isles a chance to get the game even in the third.

3. The Isles entered the third period trailing for the first time in November. THey are 0-7-1 this season when allowing the first goal and 0-7-1 when trailing after 40 mins.

a few more:

4. The Isles had two 5-on-3's and eight pp's overall, but went 0-8 and allowed a shorthanded goal.

5. Guerin, Streit and Hunter combined for 20 of the Isles' 36 shots.

6. The Flyers have had the Isles' number of late. Philly has beaten the Isles 6 straight, and 9 of 10. Isles record is 1-7-2 in that stretch vs. Philadelphia.


Forever1940 is the nom de plume of Eric Hornick. Eric has worked the Stanley Cup Finals four times, and celebrated his 26th anniversary as the statistician on Islander home telecasts on January 21, 2008.

Thursday, November 06, 2008

Stat Trick: Atlanta 4, Isles 3

Even when the Isles were a terrific team, they had some terrible Novembers.

November 2008 is shaping up to be memorable, having blown three multi-goal leads (1-2-0) in the final 20 minutes this week.   On to the trick:

1.  The Isles are now 3-2-0 when they lead after two periods.  20 of the 30 teams have not lost in regulation when leading after two.  Carolina (5-2-1) is the only other team to have lost twice; they blew a 2-1 lead going to the third period tonight.  The Isles lost only once each of the last two seasons when leading after two periods:
22-1-2 in 2007-08
29-1-5 in 2006-07

2.  The Isles have been outscored 11-2 in the third period of the last four games.  They have allowed 20 third period goals -most in the NHL.

3.  The Isles have won 39 regular season games in their history at the Garden.  They are 7-22-10 in their next game, including an incomprehensible 2-18-4 in the last 24 games.  (BTW, five of the 39 games ended a regular season; the Isles are 0-4-1 in the first game of the following season -- including 2008-09!)

and a few more...

4. Trent Hunter, Frans Nielsen and Mark Streit each had two points in a 17-second span; Nielsen now has five points in 4 games this month, while Streit has 11 points (Filip Kuba leads all defensemen with 14).

5. Mitch Fritz had only one 41 second shift.  Perhaps coincidentally, the Islanders had only six hits in the entire game (Atlanta had 17).

6.  Face-offs remain a problem; Isles dropped 42 of 66 draws tonight.  Comrie lost 8 of 10 while Weight dropped 13 of 18.

7.  Four Thrashers: Little, White, Havelid, and Kozlov, were +3.

8.  With the regulation win, the Thrasher jump over the Isles, going to 10 points to the Isles' 9.  Florida also has 9 --the Panthers are playing in Los Angeles tonight.

 Forever1940 is the nom de plume of Eric Hornick. Eric has worked the Stanley Cup Finals four times, and celebrated his 26th anniversary as the statistician on Islander home telecasts on January 21, 2008.

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Stat Trick: Isles 2, Rangers 1

Okay, blame me. Just seconds after I gave Howie the note about the Islanders having only one shutout in their history at MSG (12/17/75 for Billy Smith), Markus Naslund broke the shutout. I've never believed in these jinxes, but it happened so quickly I spent about 15 seconds laughing --hopefully you couldn't hear me on the air! On to the trick.

1. As of Monday morning, the Isles had two wins. They now have 4.

2. As of Monday morning, the Isles had three shorthanded goals. They now have a league-leading 6, including a club record-tying two in the third period tonight.

3. The Isles are now 2-2-1 on the road this season. Believe it or not, it's their best road start since the Isles won their first six road games in 2001-02.

and a few more...

4. The Isles are now 6-1 on Presidential Election nights, losing only in 1992.

5. The Isles improve to 8-1-1 in their last ten trips to Manhattan. Six of the eight wins, including the last 4, have been by one goal.

6. While they didn't get the shutout, the Isles allowed only one goal for the first time this season, ending a stretch of 16 straight games (over two seasons) that they had allowed at least two goals.

7. A couple of strange Ranger streaks ended tonight. They had earned at least a point in every game they had allowed the first goal (5-0-1) and in every game that they didn't lead after 20 minutes (8-0-1).

8. The Isles didn't score on the power play tonight, so they still have eight pp goals; they've score six while shorthanded. The six SH goals (4 shy of last year's total) have been scored by six different players.

9. The Isles have been outscored 28-13 at even strength (the Rangers' 6th attacker goal tonight falls into that statistically) but have outscored their opponents 18-13 in all other situations.

10. The Isles are 3-1 in games played on back-to-back nights and 1-6-1 in all other games. They've now won the back-end of four straight back-to-backs dating back to last season.


Forever1940 is the nom de plume of Eric Hornick. Eric has worked the Stanley Cup Finals four times, and celebrated his 26th anniversary as the statistician on Islander home telecasts on January 21, 2008.

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Stat Trick: Election Night

1. The Isles are 15-5-3 on Election night, including 5-1 on Presidential Election nights, having been idle in 1972 and 1996, and locked out in 2004.

2.  The Isles have won their last four Election Night games, including last season's 3-2 thriller over the Rangers at the Coliseum.

3.  While the Isles almost never open the season at home, they almost always play at home on Election night.  This is only their third election night road game (winning, along with Jimmy Carter,  in 1976 in Colorado and losing in 1992, along with George Bush 41 in Pittsburgh). 

4.  The Isles are 4-0 at home on Presidential Election nights and 1-1 on the road; the White House changed parties in both previous times the Isles played an Election night road game. 

5.  Republicans have been elected every time the Isles have played at home on Presidential Election Night; Democrats have won the two times that the Isles played on the road.

5.  The Isles have played the Rangers twice on election night, beating them by one goal in both 1988 and 2007.

The complete list:

05-Nov-74    Vs    Philadelphia    4    4    T
04-Nov-75    Vs    California    5    3    W
02-Nov-76    @    Colorado    5    1    W   ==  President Carter elected
07-Nov-78    Vs    Minnesota    5    2    W
06-Nov-79    Vs    Los Angeles    4    1    W
04-Nov-80    Vs    Detroit            6    4    W ==President Reagan elected
03-Nov-81    Vs    Calgary            2    2    T
02-Nov-82    Vs    Pittsburgh    1    3    L
08-Nov-83    Vs    Philadelphia    4    1    W
06-Nov-84    Vs    St. Louis    6    3    W ==President Reagan re-elected
05-Nov-85    Vs    Calgary            4    4    T
04-Nov-86    Vs    Washington    7    1    W
03-Nov-87    Vs    New Jersey    6    3    W
08-Nov-88    Vs    New York    4    3    W ==President Bush 41 elected
07-Nov-89    Vs    Washington    3    5    L
06-Nov-90    Vs    Toronto            4    3    W
03-Nov-92    @    Pittsburgh    0    2    L ==President Clinton elected
02-Nov-93    Vs    Vancouver    1    2    L
07-Nov-95    Vs    Vancouver    2    5    L
07-Nov-2000    Vs    Nashville    2    1    W ==President Bush 43 elected
06-Nov-2001    Vs    Tampa Bay    3    0    W
08-Nov-2005  Vs New Jersey  4 1 W
06-Nov-2007  Vs New York   3  2  W
04-Nov-2008  Vs New York

 Forever1940 is the nom de plume of Eric Hornick. Eric has worked the Stanley Cup Finals four times, and celebrated his 26th anniversary as the statistician on Islander home telecasts on January 21, 2008.

Sunday, November 02, 2008

Stat Trick: Montreal 5, Islanders 4

Just over 20 years ago, Jack Buck (Joe's dad for you young'ins) had one of the great calls in baseball history, calling Kirk Gibson's walk-off home run. You can hear it here: http://www.bayblitz.com/WEB%20GIFS%201/gibson1_short.wav

To paraphrase, "The (Canadiens) win the game 5 to 4; I don't believe what I just saw. I don't believe what I just saw."

On to the trick:

Where to begin:

The good:

1. The Isles scored 2 pp goals in a game for the first time this season, after going 3-27 in the first five games at home on the power play.

2. Mark Streit has been on the ice for every Islander power play goal this season. He four goals in the last 5 games (all on special teams).

3. The Islanders scored 4 goals in 2 periods against the Canadiens; one more than they tallied in four games last season.

4. The Isles scored four consecutive goals for the first time since February 16th against Atlanta.

5. The Islanders took a lead for the first time in 6 games (317:04 since their OT winner in Tampa)

6. The Islanders took a three goal lead for the first time since the home Opener. (Tonight was also the first time they led at any time on home ice since the opener as well.

7. Streit and Weight each have points in five straight games. Weight also won 8 of 10 face-offs.

8. Franz Nielsen had his first goal of the season and an assist. He won 9 of 12 draws, and has won 23 of 30 draws over the last two games.


The bad and the ugly:

1. The Isles allowed an early goal for the 6th straight game, all losses. They have allowed the first goal in 7 of their first 10 games and are 0-6-1 when doing so.

2. The Isles blew a three-goal lead in the third period, allowing 4 goals in 7:31. (The Isles were 22-1-2 when they led after two last season (losing to Toronto at the Coliseum on March 18) and 29-1-5 (with the loss coming the night Ricky was hurt in Montreal ) in 2006-07).

3. Plekanac and Kovalev each had four points for Montreal. Kovalev and Andrei Kostitsyn were both +4.

4. The Islanders scored 4 goals but lost at home in regulation for the first time since October 29, 2005 vs Buffalo (6-4) (and the first time against Montreal anywhere since 1981! Really.)

5. The Canadiens outshot the Isles 16-1 in the first 16 minutes of the third period.

6. The Isles fall to 2-7-1, equalling the worst 10-game start in club history. They were 2-7-1 in both 1972-73 and 1993-94. Their five points is the fewest in the league -- one less than Atlanta.

7. The Isles have lost 6 straight to Montreal; longest since losing 10 straight to Les Habitants between 1975-1978.

8. The Isles are 1-5-0 at home this season; the 2 points equals the worst 6-game home start in their history (0-4-2 in 1989-90 and 1-5-0 in 1972-73). They are 2-11-2 in their last 15 Coliseum games, dating back to last February.

9. The Isles have allowed 25 goals in the five straight home losses; most since allowing 25 in Feb/Mar 200. (The all-time worst in 27, most recently in 2000.

10. The Isles are 5-16-3 in their last 24 games (over 2 seasons).

Forever1940 is the nom de plume of Eric Hornick. Eric has worked the Stanley Cup Finals four times, and celebrated his 26th anniversary as the statistician on Islander home telecasts on January 21, 2008.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Stat Trick

It certainly didn't feel like Islanders-Rangers for most of the night, despite a pretty good game for two periods. On to the trick:

1. The Isles have allowed a goal in the first four minutes of the last 4 home games -- all losses. The 1-4 start is their worst at home since 1989-90. The Isles have not led at any point in any of those games.

2. Kyle Okposo had the first Isles goal and had 7 shots. He leads all NHL rookies with 23 shots on goal.

3. Mark Streit scored the Isles' third shorthanded goal of the season. Only Philadelphia and San Jose (each with 4) have more. The Isles scored 10 SH goals all last season. Streit has three goals on the season -- Mike Green is the only defensemen with more(4); all three of Streit's goals have been special teams goals.

and some more:

4. Yann Danis served as the back-up (and probably thought that he was close to getting in after MacDonald had his bell rung in the third.) Danis has appeared in 6 NHL, all for the Canadiens in October/November 2005.

5. Triple negative is still negative:
Isles are 0-5-0 when allowing the first goal, 0-4-0 when trailing after one period, and 0-6-0 when trailing after two periods.

6. Even more negative:
The Isles will play their final game of the month on Thursday in Philadelphia. If the Isles lose in regulation, they will equal the worst 9 game start in team history and have one fewer point through 9 games than the Original Islanders. They will also become the third Isles team to lose 7 games in October, previously done in 90-91 and 93-94.

Forever1940 is the nom de plume of Eric Hornick. Eric has worked the Stanley Cup Finals four times, and celebrated his 26th anniversary as the statistician on Islander home telecasts on January 21, 2008.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

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Stat Trick: Carolina 4, Isles 3

The Islanders re-wrote the record books, but in the end a goal set up by a Sutter at 7:11 proved to be the difference. On to the trick:

1. Shots. Lots of shots. 60 officially -- smashing the Islander club record of 54, set on 1/1/94 vs Hartford and equaled on 3/17/04 in Florida. (By the way, they lost both of those games also, including 4-3 to the Whalers). The 60 shots are the most the Hurricane franchise has ever allowed.

2. Rick DiPietro left with an apparent injury after the first period. He's allowed 9 goals in 7 periods of work this season (3.86 GAA) and has allowed 6 goals in three first periods in that stretch.

3. The Isles have allowed the first goal 4 times, losing all 4 and have trailed after two periods in all five of their losses.

and a few more:

4. Doug Weight was stopped on a penalty shot in the game's final second (0.7 seconds remained) It's the second failed Islander penalty shot of the season-Okposo was stopped on opening night in New Jersey. The Isles have now scored on only 11 of the 41 penalty shots in their history, including 1 of their last 15.

5. Cam Ward obliterated his career high in saves, stopping 57 shots. (Previous high was 42) He has stopped 5 of 7 career penalty shots. He is now 6-2 in his career against the Isles. Ward btw was born on Feburary 29, 1984--the day Flatley and LaFontaine debuted for the then Stanley Cup champion Islanders.

6. Bill Guerin led the Isles with 10 shots on goal. Every Isle except Bruno Gervais had at least one.

7. The Isles' record drops to 2-5. Four points is their worst 7-game start since going 1-4-2 to open the 1996-97 season. The Isles are 1-3 at home, equaling the fewest points in their first four home games. If the Isles lose in regulation on Monday, it will be their worst home start since the 1989-90 season.

8. Here's hoping that Brandon Sutter is okay, after absorbing a clean open-ice hit from Doug Weight in the third period.

Forever1940 is the nom de plume of Eric Hornick. Eric has worked the Stanley Cup Finals four times, and celebrated his 26th anniversary as the statistician on Islander home telecasts on January 21, 2008.

Friday, October 24, 2008

OK -- people are reading. Stat Trick errata.

"Streit became the first Islander to score a goal this season."

should read

"Streit became the first Islander born in Switzerland to score a goal this season."

(or "Streit became the first Islander defensemen to score a goal this season".)

As always, thanks for reading!


Forever1940 is the nom de plume of Eric Hornick. Eric has worked the Stanley Cup Finals four times, and celebrated his 26th anniversary as the statistician on Islander home telecasts on January 21, 2008.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Stat Trick: Stars 5, Isles 3

Was this the most one-sided 2-goal defeat in Islander history? Just might have been. On to the trick:

1,
Mike Ribiero had a career night, setting highs in assists (4) and
points (5). The four assists was one shy of the franchise record, set
by Murray Oliver and equaled by Larry Murphy (vs the Isles in 1989) and Brad Richards.

2.
The Isles have been outscored 12-4 in their last two home games. (Was
12-2 entering the third.) The 8 goal differential over two games is
the worst since losing 5-1 to the Rangers and 4-0 to Pittsburgh under interim coach Brad Shaw in March 2006. The club record is 12,
set in a pair of 8-2 losses (to Pittsburgh and New Jersey) in March
2000.

3. Attendance up nearly 25%...or so it seems. Announced
attendance was 10,183 -- over 2,000 greater than saw the same two teams
in the least attended game last season. Actual attendance was much
less; just before the anthem there were a grand total of 12 people
sitting in Section 211.

..and a few more

4. Mark Streit and Jon Sim each recorded their first goals as Islanders. For Sim,
it's his first goal since March 8, 2007 when he had a two-goal game
against Montreal as a member of the Thrashers. Streit became the first Islander to score a goal this season.

5.
The Isles are 2-4-0; it's their worst 6-game start since opening 1-3-2
in 2000-01. They've been outscored 21-14; it's their worst goal
differential through 6 games since 1995-96.

6. The Stars scored
5 goals against the Isles for the first time since April 2, 1997 as
they won in regulation at the Coliseum for the first time since
December 21, 2000.

Forever1940 is the nom de plume of Eric Hornick. Eric has worked the Stanley Cup Finals four times, and celebrated his 26th anniversary as the statistician on Islander home telecasts on January 21, 2008.

Stat Trick: Dallas 5, Isles 3

Was this the most one-sided 2-goal defeat in Islander history? Just might have been. On to the trick:

1, Mike Ribiero had a career night, setting highs in assists (4) and points (5). The four assists was one shy of the franchise record, set by Murray Oliver and equaled by Larry Murphy (vs the Isles in 1989) and Brad Richards.

2. The Isles have been outscored 12-4 in their last two home games. (Was 12-2 entering the third.) The 8 goal differential over two games is the worst since losing 5-1 to the Rangers and 4-0 to Pittsburgh under interim coach Brad Shaw in March 2006. The club record is 12, set in a pair of 8-2 losses (to Pittsburgh and New Jersey) in March 2000.

3. Attendance up nearly 25%...or so it seems. Announced attendance was 10,183 -- over 2,000 greater than saw the same two teams in the least attended game last season. Actual attendance was much less; just before the anthem there were a grand total of 12 people sitting in Section 211.

..and a few more

4. Mark Streit and Jon Sim each recorded their first goals as Islanders. For Sim, it's his first goal since March 8, 2007 when he had a two-goal game against Montreal as a member of the Thrashers. Streit became the first Islander to score a goal this season.

5. The Isles are 2-4-0; it's their worst 6-game start since opening 1-3-2 in 2000-01. They've been outscored 21-14; it's their worst goal differential through 6 games since 1995-96.

6. The Stars scored 5 goals against the Isles for the first time since April 2, 1997 as they won in regulation at the Coliseum for the first time since December 21, 2000.

Forever1940 is the nom de plume of Eric Hornick. Eric has worked the Stanley Cup Finals four times, and celebrated his 26th anniversary as the statistician on Islander home telecasts on January 21, 2008.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Stat Trick: Isles 4, Tampa 3 (OT)

1. Trent Hunter's two goals, including the OT winner, give him 4 in the season's first 4 games -- 1/3 of last season's total of 12. He had four goals in October and November combined last season. It's the 10th two-goal game of his career; he's never had a hat trick and the third time that he's scored in overtime: (2/27/07-Philly and 2/28/08-Atlanta)

2. The Isles had never scored in OT in Tampa before last season (Mike Sillinger on 12/8/07) but have now done so twice in their last three trip to the west coast of Florida.

3. Franz Nielsen's assist on the winning goal was his second of the night (and of the season). It's the first two-assist game of his career; he had a 1-goal, 1-assist game against Montreal in 2007. Nielsen has played at least 14:52 in all four games this season -- the 4 highest ice-times of his NHL career.

and a few more:

4. 10 of the 11 Isles' goals this season have been scored by players 27 or older. (Bergenheim has the 11th goal; he's 24).

5. The Isles have opened 1-1 on the road in 4 of the last 5 seasons. (They opened 0-3 under Nolan two years ago.)

6. Isles will have a chance to sweep a trip to the state of Florida on Saturday when the meet the Panthers in Sunrise. The Isles have swept a 2-game trip to Florida only once in their history -- the first two games of the Laviolette era.


Forever1940 is the nom de plume of Eric Hornick. Eric has worked the Stanley Cup Finals four times, and celebrated his 26th anniversary as the statistician on Islander home telecasts on January 21, 2008.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

MacDonald takes a beating

If Coach Gordon truly doesn't believe in changing goalies, it may be a new belief.

Tuukka Rask was his #1 goalie last season in Providence, and he was pulled three times in a four week period:

# 01/11/08: L (23m55s, 8/11) 0-3 defeat vs. Worcester (Patzold) [Replaced by Sigalet].
# 01/25/08: - (28m23s, 7/10) 4-3 SO victory vs. Springfield (Deslauriers) [Replaced by Sigalet].
# 02/08/08: - (24m01s, 10/15) 5-7 defeat vs. Hartford (Montoya) [Replaced by Sigalet].

(The data comes from hockeygoalies.org)

While the Isles are hoping that he Gordon his next Al Arbour, he's on a path to be the next Brad Shaw.

Shaw also won his first home game as an Islander coach, and then was blown out in the second game.

12-Jan-06 Vs Calgary 3 2 W
14-Jan-06 Vs Vancouver 1 8 L

The Isles did not lose a home game by 6 goals under Ted Nolan, and lost only once by 5 goals (10-27-07 to Carolina).

Forever1940 is the nom de plume of Eric Hornick. Eric has worked the Stanley Cup Finals four times, and celebrated his 26th anniversary as the statistician on Islander home telecasts on January 21, 2008.

Friday, October 10, 2008

10 missing faces

It will be 27 weeks between games for the Isles, dating back to their 4-3 shootout win over the Rangers last April 4. Richard Park had the deciding goal in the shootout.

Ten of the 20 players on the Isles roster that night are not on the current roster.

Who are they?

(I'll answer that, because "Where are they" would take some digging)

Rob Davison
Bryan Berard
Matt Keith
Kip Brennan
Drew Fata
Josef Vasicek
Jeremy Colliton
Miro Satan
Michael Morrison
Wade Dubielewicz

(Sutton and Campoli are both on IR, but neither played that night.)

The 10 who did play (at least 9 expected to play tonight):
Trent Hunter
Richard Park
Bill Guerin
Sean Bergenheim
Kyle Okposo
Radek Martinek
Jack Hillen
Freddy Meyer
Frans Nielsen
Blake Comeau


Forever1940 is the nom de plume of Eric Hornick. Eric has worked the Stanley Cup Finals four times, and celebrated his 26th anniversary as the statistician on Islander home telecasts on January 21, 2008.

Isles on XM

Here's the October schedule for those who will have trouble hearing WMJC 94.3 or (for day games, such as Monday) WHLI 1100.


10/10/2008 Islanders @ Devils 7:00PMET XM 205
10/11/2008 Blues @ Islanders 7:00PMET XM 206
10/13/2008 Sabres @ Islanders 2:00PMET XM 206
10/16/2008 Islanders @ Lightning 7:30PMET XM 207
10/18/2008 Islanders @ Panthers 7:00PMET XM 209
10/23/2008 Stars @ Islanders 7:00PMET XM 205
10/25/2008 Hurricanes @ Islanders 7:00PMET XM 207
10/27/2008 Rangers @ Islanders 7:00PMET XM 206
10/30/2008 Islanders @ Flyers 7:00PMET XM 206

Note that XM only airs one feed of the game -- usually the home team. So if you dial in XM tonight, expect to hear Matt Loughlin and Sherry Ross and the Devils' broadcast.


Forever1940 is the nom de plume of Eric Hornick. Eric has worked the Stanley Cup Finals four times, and celebrated his 26th anniversary as the statistician on Islander home telecasts on January 21, 2008.

All hopes spring eternal -- it's opening night

Happy New Season.

How happy we shall see, now won't we?

Tonight's game is a 7:00 face-off on MSG +2 (It's channel 79 on Cablevision's LI system -- check your local listings for the channel every where else.) No pre-game shows on TV this season. (Chris Botta has a bunch about that on his blog.)

Speaking of blogs, I've had one for a number of seasons that I use as an archive of my posts.
forever1940.blogspot.com

It's verrrrrrrry low key, but if you're looking for something that I might have noted in the past, it's there (at least for the post-lockout era). My posts used to be archived somewhere else but they mysteriously disappeared... :) :)

Isles dominated the Devils last season, going 6-1-1, earning 13 of their 79 points on the season vs NJ. That includes 3 wins in four tries at the Rock.

Random notes:

Isles are 6-8-2 in coaching debuts; 2-5-2 when the game is a season opener. Laviolette and Henning were the two coaches to win a season opener in their first game as an Isle coach.

The Isles will be looking to win consecutive openers for only the second time in their history. They won the first game of their Cup defenses in both 1980 and 1981.

Friday marks the 10th anniversary of the last Isle opener on home ice (10-10-98 vs Pittsburgh). They are 2-5-1 in openers since, with the 2004 opener being lost to a lockout. Ironically the Isles were supposed to open at home that year.

This is the 3rd time the Isles have opened in NJ and the 4th time the Isles have opened in a road game against the Devil franchise, counting Bryan Trottier's NHL debut in Kansas City in 1975.

The Isles have opened at home only four times in their history (1972, 1980, Jan 1995, 1998). Only Anaheim has opened at home less frequently -- three times. (The Wild will play their 5th opener at home on Saturday.)

The Devils have done well in openers (18-8-7; .652 win pctg is 3rd best among current NHL teams, behind Ottawa and Colorado (Tampa was ahead of them before their loss to the Rangers last week.)

The Devil franchise has never lost a season opener at home, going 11-0-5. This includes two NJ wins and one KC tie against the Islanders.

The Isles are only 9-18-8 in openers, tying Pittsburgh for most losses in openers for any expansion team (Pens are 17-18-6 after their win last week.)

The Isles are opening at home for the 32nd time, keeping pace with the Bruins, who opened for the 32nd time on the road on Thursday. Of course the Bruins were founded in 1924.

The only expansion team that is anywhere close to the Isles in road openers is St. Louis. The Blues have opened the season on the road 25 times. (They open at home Friday before visiting the Island on Saturday)


Forever1940 is the nom de plume of Eric Hornick. Eric has worked the Stanley Cup Finals four times, and celebrated his 26th anniversary as the statistician on Islander home telecasts on January 21, 2008.

Monday, May 05, 2008

Stars keep Isles' legacy in tact

Did the clock really say 2:24am when Brendan Morrow made sure the Sharks wouldn't join the 42 Leafs and 75 Isles in NHL lore?
 
Of the teams that didn't get it back to 3-3, you would have to say that the Sharks were clearly one of the bigger threats to join the 75'ers.
After all, they had finished 2nd in the West -- this entire series was extraordinarily close, and a Shark goal in OT #4 would have given them tremendous momentum heading home.
 
Congratulations to the Stars, who helped preserved the leagacy of thoe 1975 Islanders.  (NHL teams have now won 151 of 153 series when leading 3-0, when you include NBA and MLB teams it is 266-3).  By winning on Sunday they also earned a bunch of rest, because the conference finals won't begin until Thursday.

 Forever1940 is the nom de plume of Eric Hornick. Eric has worked the Stanley Cup Finals four times, and celebrated his 26th anniversary as the statistician on Islander home telecasts on January 21, 2008.

Tuesday, April 08, 2008

Botta: Check arrives Thursday

From Chris Botta's blog:
<<Judgment DayI'm not at will to release any official news of the Hummer Metro Ice Challenge.

Inunrelated news, I'm told a pair of MSG execs and a representative fromHummer are coming to the Coliseum on Thursday morning. And they'rebringing one of those over-sized checks with them.

I still haven't figured out how to cram one of those into the canister at the bank drive-thru.>>


Don't be surprised to hear it talked about during pre-game coverage tomorrow.


Forever1940 is the nom de plume of Eric Hornick. Eric has worked the Stanley Cup Finals four times, and celebrated his 26th anniversary as the statistician on Islander home telecasts on January 21, 2008.

Monday, April 07, 2008

CONGRATULATIONS TO...

...my MSG+ colleague and friend Billy Jaffe, who won a New York Emmy last night.

Billy was awarded the Emmy for ON-CAMERA TALENT: Sports Analyst. The other nominees were Joe Micheletti, Ron Darling, and Mark Jackson.

The play-by-play award was won by Marv Albert, for his coverage of the Nets.

The award was for Billy's work during his rookie season with the Isles (2006-07).



Forever1940 is the nom de plume of Eric Hornick. Eric has worked the Stanley Cup Finals four times, and celebrated his 26th anniversary as the statistician on Islander home telecasts on January 21, 2008.

Sunday, April 06, 2008

Botta "falls off the couch" as Rangers awarded Hummer

from Chris Botta's blog....
<<

Sunday, April 6, 2008
Metro Ice Capades (or someone owes the Children's Foundation at least 25 grand)
If you're like me, you probably fell off the couch when Sam Rosen announced after the Rangers' loss today to the Devils that the Blueshirts had won the Hummer Metro Ice Challenge and would receive $50,000 for their charity.

The Islanders, by virtue of their shootout win in the Garden on Friday night, had a one-point lead in the Challenge going into today's game. When the Rangers only got a point in New Jersey today, I had assumed the Challenge was a tie and perhaps 25 K each would go to the Islanders' and Rangers' charities.

Then Sam made his most stunning announcement since the one last year when he said the NYI were eliminated from qualifying for the playoffs.

(This paragraph serves as my official statement that, of course, I would much rather be blogging about the Islanders going into the playoffs than this. But it is what it is. And what it is, I think, is a scam).

You would think there might be two logical tie-breakers - if there was a need to break the tie:

1. wins within the Challenge (Islanders win)
2. Islanders-Rangers head-to-head (Islanders win)

After Sam's stunner - I mean, there wasn't even an explanation! - I called Al Trautwig in the studio. Al was suitably sympathetic but didn't have an answer for me. He said, "Are you officially protesting"? My response was as profane as it was affirmative.

I called an "impeccable source" at the Garden next. He/she told me there was a rumor that it was decided recently that if the Rangers and Islanders ended the Challenge in a tie, the title would go to the Rangers because they had the better regular season record.

Now if you can tell me what Rangers victories against teams outside of the, uh, Metro area have to do with this, I'll give you $50,000.

This is about right and wrong. This is about not laying down. This is about $50,000, or at least $25,000, for the New York Islanders Children's Foundation.

This, my friends, is not over.
Posted by Chris Botta>>


Forever1940 is the nom de plume of Eric Hornick. Eric has worked the Stanley Cup Finals four times, and celebrated his 26th anniversary as the statistician on Islander home telecasts on January 21, 2008.

Saturday, April 05, 2008

Playoff seedings

Here's how the final two days of the season look: ( I think)

EAST:

PIT/MON will be the two top seeds. Pittsburgh needs to earn as many points as Montreal does to earn the top seed. Pit plays Philly tomorrow while Montreal plays Toronto tonight. A Leaf regulation win would give the top seed to Pitt.

CAR or WASH will be the third seed. Washington needs a point tonight vs Fla, otherwise its Carolina.

NJ will be either 4th or 5th. The only way the Rangers can displace them from home ice is with a regulation win.

The Rangers can finish 4th (with a reg win at NJ), 6th (with a reg loss at NJ and a Boston win over Buffalo), or 5th (anything else).

Boston can finish 5th (win vs Buff and Devils beat Rangers in regulation) ,6th (at least one point vs Buffalo), 7th (regulation loss to Buffalo and Flyer loss (regulation or ot/so to Pitt), or 8th (regulation loss to Buffalo and Flyer win).

Ottawa can finish 6th (Boston regulation loss and Flyer regulation or OT loss), 7th (Boston gets at least one point and Flyers don't beat Pittsburgh), or 8th (Boston gets at least one point and Philly wins)

Philly can finish 6th (win and Boston regulation loss), 7th (win, and Boston win or ot/so loss), or 8th (loss or ot/so loss to Pit )

No series are set yet, but two could be set tonight - if Boston loses to Buffalo in OT/SO, they will face the Southeast Champ, while the Rangers would face the Devils. If Boston loses in regulation, that would also assure a Ranger-Devil opening round series.

10-15 in the East are set : Buff, Tor, Fla, NYI, Atl, TB

WEST

Things are simpler out west:

Top 5 seeds are locked in: DET, SJ, MIN, ANA, DAL (technically Colorado could catch Dallas if they could reverse a 22-goal deficit in goal differential but we'll assume that won't happen). NSH will definitely be 8th.

Colorado owns a 1-point lead over Calgary, and the tie-breaker between the teams, so Colorado will be 6th and the Flames 7th unless Calgary wins in Vancouver tonight and Colorado loses to Minnesota tomorrow in regulation.

So two series are set: DET-NSH and ANA-DAL and the other two could be set tonight.

Three teams are tied for 9th (CHI, VAN, EDM) Edmonton had 41 wins but no games to play, Chicago has 40 wins and plays Detroit tomorrow, Vancouver has 39 wins and hosts Calgary tonight).

12-15 are locked. PHX - COLUM - STL - LA

Forever1940 is the nom de plume of Eric Hornick. Eric has worked the Stanley Cup Finals four times, and celebrated his 26th anniversary as the statistician on Islander home telecasts on January 21, 2008.

Stat Trick: Isles 4, Rangers 3 (SO)

For the second straight season, Wade Dubielewicz was victorious in a shootout on the last day of the season. Of course, this one wasn't enough to get the Isles into the playoffs. One last time--- on to the trick.

1. Dubie finishes 9-9-1 on the season, and wins in an MSG shootout for the second time in a month. He made 48 saves in facing over 50 shots for the second time in less than a week. Dubie finishes with a .919 save percentage and a 2.70 goals against.

2. The Isles won the season series 5 games to 3, and 10 points to 8. They take a one-point lead in the Hummer standings with Sunday's Devils-Rangers set to decide the winner.

3. Richard Park scored a 3 on 5 goal for the second straight season. He scored in Pittsburgh last January 16th. He also was credited with his 2nd shootout -deciding goal of the season. He also had the winner in Calgary in January.

and a few more..

4. The Isles end season 35 with 35 wins and a 35-38-9 record. The 79 points are 1 more than they had two seasons ago.

5. For the 33rd times in 35 seasons, the Isles finished with fewer power plays than their opponents.

6. The Isles are now 22-10 all-time in shootouts, including 3-1 at MSG and 4-1 against the Rangers.

7. The Isles finish the season with 189 goals (+5 more in shootouts). It's the fourth time in club history that they've scored the fewest goals in the league. No Islander reached 50 points for the first time in club history, excluding the lockout campaign.

8. Jaromir Jagr now has 59 goals against the Isles, more than any player has ever scored against the Isles, and more than any active player has scored against any other team.

9. The Isles finish the season 3-3-2 in their season-ending intra-divisional eight game stretch.

10. It's only about 26 weeks until they start it up all over again. Enjoy the playoffs...even on TV.



Forever1940 is the nom de plume of Eric Hornick. Eric has worked the Stanley Cup Finals four times, and celebrated his 26th anniversary as the statistician on Islander home telecasts on January 21, 2008.

Friday, April 04, 2008

Stat Trick: Rangers 3, Isles 0

Ugly way to end the home season as the Rangers clinch a playoff spot at the Coliseum, sparking chants of "Season's Over" and the very offensive "Potvin Sxxx". On to the trick:

1. Jaromir Jagr had two first period power play goals, giving him 3 pp goals in the last two games after only 4 in the Rangers' first 78 games.

2. Henrik Lundqvist recorded his 10th shutout and finally won a road shutout. It's his 17th career shutout and 15 have been at MSG. The Rangers lost in a shootout in Lundqvist's only previous road shutout. It was Henrik's first shutout against the Isles, and the first by a Ranger at the Coliseum since January 21, 2003 (in Bryan Trottier's only game as Ranger coach at the Coliseum). The last Ranger shutout of the Isles was on March 17, 2003 at the Garden.

3. The Islanders have been shutout 7 times this season, including 4 times at the Coliseum. (The club record is 6 times at the Coliseum and 11 times overall, both in 1972-73). The Isles have been shutout 27 times in the last eight seasons at home after being blanked only 28 times at home in their first 27 seasons.

and some more...

4. The Isles finished 18-18-5 at home and scored only 89 goals (which includes one shootout goal). The 89 goals are the fewest at home in club history (not counting the lockout shortened campaign). They were 1-6-2 in the final nine games at home, beating only Pittsburgh.

5. I didn't see the final totals, but Richard Park was leading the team MVP voting on the scoreboard text poll. Good for Park, not necessarily good for the Isles. Assuming he and Trent Hunter play at MSG, they will be the only Isles to play all 82 games.

6. The Isles loss clinched the 5th seed in the draft lottery. St. Louis' loss later in the evening means that the Isles will be 5th unless the Blues get three points over the weekend against Columbus while the Isles get none vs the Rangers, or the Blues sweep Columbus and the Isles get no points or one point at MSG. The last time that the Isles had the 5th seed, they won the draft lottery and selected Rick DiPietro.

Around the League:
WHO CLINCHED TONIGHT?
EASTERN CONFERENCE

New York Rangers clinched an Eastern Conference playoff berth tonight:

WESTERN
CONFERENCE
#1 Detroit Red Wings clinched the Presidents' Trophy tonight:

#3 Minnesota Wild clinched the Northwest Division tonight:

(Games in progress with potential clinching)

#4 Anaheim Ducks (idle) can clinch the Western Conference's #4 seed tonight:
* If Dallas gets no points against Phoenix.

Calgary Flames can clinch a Western Conference playoff berth tonight: (L - Minnesota)
* If Vancouver gets one or no points against Edmonton.

Nashville Predators can clinch a Western Conference playoff berth tonight: (W - St. Louis)
* If Vancouver gets one or no points against Edmonton.


Buffalo and Chicago have been eliminated tonight.



Forever1940 is the nom de plume of Eric Hornick. Eric has worked the Stanley Cup Finals four times, and celebrated his 26th anniversary as the statistician on Islander home telecasts on January 21, 2008.

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Stat Trick: Devils 2, Isles 1

33 years ago this month, JP Parise's OT goal clinched a playoff series. Tonight, Zach Parise's OT goal, also in the opening minute of overtime, clinched a playoff spot for the Devils. On to the trick:

1. Parise's goal gives him a team leading 4 goals and 8 points against the Isles this season. He has career highs in goals, assists and points this season (32-34-66). Parise had eight shots on goal.

2. The Devils outshot the Isles 47-22 tonight and 266-199 on the season, but the Isles outscored NJ 21-14, and won the season series 6 games to 2 and 13 points to 3.

3. Trent Hunter had 8 hits for the Isles, while Josef Vasicek's goal was his 5th of the season against NJ.

Around the League:

WHO CLINCHED TONIGHT?
EASTERN CONFERENCE

Montreal Canadiens clinched the Northeast Division tonight with their win over Ottawa

New Jersey Devils clinched an Eastern Conference playoff berth tonight with their win over the Isles

WESTERN CONFERENCE
#1 Detroit Red Wings (idle) can clinch the Presidents' Trophy tonight:
* If San Jose gets one or no points against Los Angeles. (game still in progress)

#6
Colorado Avalanche can clinch a Western Conference playoff berth tonight:
* If they beat Vancouver (game still in progress)


Forever1940 is the nom de plume of Eric Hornick. Eric has worked the Stanley Cup Finals four times, and celebrated his 26th anniversary as the statistician on Islander home telecasts on January 21, 2008.