After a week in western Canada and 3 days off, the Islanders returned home on Friday night to begin a 4 game home stand welcoming the San Jose Sharks to Nassau Coliseum. They defeated the Sharks in December in San Jose but couldn’t complete the season series sweep on home ice.
The New York Islanders square off with the Buffalo Sabres in a battle of last place teams Saturday night at the Nassau Coliseum as the Islanders try to rebound from their latest home ice defeat, 4 to 3 to the San Jose Sharks. The Islanders own the worst record on home ice this year, a far cry from the days of “Fort Neverlose.” (Photo credit: paul.hadsall/flickr)
Standing in their way are the Buffalo Sabres whose 46 points (19-39-8 record) have it comfortably “ahead” of the 29th place Edmonton Oilers in the race for worst record overall in the NHL and coveted top position in June’s draft lottery.
The Blackhawks are set to go against the now depleted Buffalo Sabre. Since the trade deadline the Sabres have seen key components to their team gone in a rebuilding effort. The Sabres have no hopes of making the playoffs this year and have culled their lineup to reconstruct for the future.
Gone now are Matt Moulson, Steve Ott and of course star netminder Ryan Miller. While this may seem like a gimme game for the Blackhawks this is also a trap game as well if the Hawks look past the team along Lake Erie. The Hawks still have to gather in as many points as they can with only 18 games left in the regular season.
The New York Islanders goaltending carousel continues to spin as earlier this week Kevin Poulin was loaned to Bridgeport and Anders Nilsson was recalled. Goaltending is still something the organization needs to address through trade or free agency, but the home grown goaltending talent seems to be running out of time to prove their worth.
The Islanders are welcomed home after coming up empty on their miniature road trip. After losing two highly competitive games to Chicago and Nashville, they look to rebound in front of their loyal fans. As inspiring as the Islanders play has been in the beginning of the year, the Sabres have been on the opposite side of respectable.
The winless Sabres sit at 0-6-1 and that could be a good or bad thing for the Isles. The optimistic fan can hope and expect the Islanders to extend that skid to 8 games. However, the pessimistic camp that most Isles’ fans reside in, have to be wondering if it is a matter of time before the Sabres' offense explode for their first win.
In what could be a tale of two hockey games the Chicago Blackhawks hung on to win over another Eastern Conference foe.
The Hawks opened up the game dominating in the first period with a 20-6 shots on goal advantage. The second period was pretty even and the third period you would have to give the nod to Buffalo, for which team was dictating play. The Sabres held the shots on goal edge in this tilt 13-3.
The difference in this game was the Hawks special teams as they held the Sabres 0-3 on the power play while they netted a Patrick Kane power play goal which turned out to be the game winner. The other difference was Corey Crawford who was white hot as the game went on. Cr...