11 years ago tonight (2004) – Cliff Ronning and Kenny Jonsson scored power play goals 1:42 apart as the Isles grabbed a 2-0 lead en route to a 4-2 victory over Buffalo. Arron Asham and Adrian Aucoin each had a pair of assists; the Isles punished Sabre penalties by scoring three power play goals.
Ronning’s goal was his first as an Islander and the 298th of his NHL career (he’d score two goals two nights later to reach the 300 goal mark). It came in his 1,100th NHL game.
Ronning’s first goal as an Islander came while wearing a uniform that was not blue or white, but rather the alternative orange. He told Newsday’s Alan Hahn, “"I love these jerseys. They're bright. You can see everybody out there. I don't know, everyone says they're a little strange, but they're actually nice when you're out there."
|A look at an Orange Jersey (55 would have been Jason Blake's)|
Rick DiPietro made 27 saves to get back to the .500 mark, at 9-9-1 as the Islanders improved to 9-2-0-0 in their last eleven home games. It was the first time they’ve done that since February/March, 1994. The hot streak gave the Isles 16 Coliseum wins on the season, more than any other team in the NHL on home ice except Detroit.
Also on this date: (2000) – Marian Hossa scored with 1:03 to play in overtime as the Ottawa Senators spoiled a 41-save effort by Kevin Weekes with a 4-3 win. Unlike the Isles’ previous 46 overtime losses, this one earned a point – it was the first “loser point” in Isles history.
All-time, the Isles have played twelve January 17th games at the Coliseum and finish with a 4-6-2 record on this date at 1255 Hempstead Turnpike in Uniondale.
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