Friday, April 03, 2015
Isles to play game 3,333 Saturday
Saturday is not only Decades Night, it is not only a chance for the Isles to clinch a playoff spot (with an Isles win and a Washington regulation win over Ottawa), it is not only the 1,664th (and penultimate) regular season game at the Coliseum, but it is also the 3,333rd regular season game in Isles history.
Just for kicks -- here's games 1,111 and 2,222-
Game 1,111 was played on March 28, 1986 -- late in Al Arbour's first term as Isles coach. The Isles defeated Washington in Landover 4-3. Mike Bossy scored twice, giving him 58 goals on the season; Pat Flatley and Brent Sutter had the other goals for the Isles. Billy Smith started the game, but was ejected after a fight late in the first period. Kelly Hrudey earned the win in relief; Pete Peeters, who had allowed a well-remembered goal to Bob Nystrom in 1980 took the loss.
It was a preview of the first round playoff series between the teams; Washington won that series in 3 games.
Game 2,222 was played on April 9, 2000 -- a Sunday matinee for the final game of the season. Pavel Bure scored twice, giving him 59 goals on the season but in between Bure's tallies Mariusz Czerkawski had a natural hat trick as the Isles beat the Panthers 3-2.
Roberto Luongo earned the win -- it was the 7th and final win for Luongo as an Islander. He was traded away 2 1/2 months later. Thursday night he earned his 393rd win for other teams, giving him 400 NHL wins.
Only 9,316 attended the season finale at the Coliseum as the Isles finished 24-48-9-1 on the season.
Game 3,333 is on Saturday night. After that, the Isles will be Long Island's team for just three more regular season games.
Forever1940 is the nom de plume of Eric Hornick, statistician on Islander home telecasts since January 21, 1982. Visit my blog: NYISkinny.com and follow me on Twitter @ehornick