Kevin Poulin has been under the Islanders' microscope for quite some time. The organization has put a lot of faith in him, expecting him to eventually take over the starting position from veteran net-minder Evgeni Nabokov, perhaps as early as next season (Photo credit: 560XLS/Flickr).
Early on, fans were probably starting to lower their expectations for Poulin, only winning one of his first five starts and then dropping six in a row between November 19th and December 7th.
However, a recent surge by the Islanders, which can be very much attributed to the performance of Poulin, may help turn a few heads and increase the confidence of the 23-year old keeper.
In a heart-breaking dose of reality, the Philadelphia Flyers have publicly acknowledged for the first time that Chris Pronger's professional hockey career is done. In a radical metaphor, it feels like the plug has finally been pulled.
In an exclusive interview with Hockey News, this is the first time the team has publicly made it known his career is over.
"I'll say it, Chris is never going to play again," said Philadelphia Flyers GM Paul Holmgren. "I have no problems saying it."
The Flyers kick their season off at home against the Maple Leafs. Toronto played last night, winning 4-3 in Montreal. Will the Flyers take advantage of Toronto playing yesterday or will Steve Mason falter in his first start as the Flyers No. 1 goalie?
At most, the 2013 NHL season has two games remaining. The Chicago Blackhawks have the opportunity to send the Boston Bruins home without any new hardware, as a win tonight would make them this year's Stanley Cup Champions.
With that being said, the New York Islanders organization has been preparing for the NHL Entry draft, as well as free agency.
As we jump ahead to July 5th, there are a handful of players that the Islanders might consider for the 2013-2014 roster that may make them a better contending team for next season's playoff run.
Since dealing two of the franchise's most prominent stars of the 2000's, Mike Richards and Jeff Carter, it seems the Philadelphia fan base has surgically dissected every single move made by the Flyers front office.
The two most scrutinized moves in the past two years though are the dealings of young stars James van Riemsdyk and Sergei Bobrovsky. To be fair, the former was an even trade that benefited both the Flyers, who got Luke Schenn, and the Maple Leafs, who landed the scorer in van Riemsdyk.
As for the latter, Bobrovsky was traded this past offseason to the Columbus Blue Jackets where he won the starting job over now-current Flyers back-up goaltender Steve Mason. After turning the Blue Jackets around and nearly making the post season, Bobrovsky is a finalist for the Vezina Trophy, awarded to the league's best goaltender.
(Pictured: Serge Bobrovsky against the Stars on April 25, 2013. Photo by Glenn James/NHLI via Getty Images)
There is a saying, most often associated with old time hockey, that says, "how can you beat em on the ice if you can't beat em in the alley?" Well, the New York Islanders certainly must have felt that way tonight as they skated to a 5-3 regulation victory over the hometown Toronto Maple Leafs.