The “W” column gets a +1

By Gary Harding

It is so nice to now see that the Maple Leafs are the LAST team to get a win.

It wasn’t the most prettiest of efforts, but it is a win, nevertheless.  There were a lot of good things, some fallbacks, but happy are we Islander fans to see the victory come – and for JT to get the shooutout winner, is just the icing on the cake.  This should give the boys confidence, as they begin a tough stretch to come.


1.  Matt Moulson – the continued great play of this kid is the feel good story of this season.  The same thoughts that I felt about Mark Streit last season are here with Matt.  He seems to be in the right places at the right time.

2.  Andy Sutton – this is what Garth has been waiting to see.  Big presence on his hit in the first period, getting the 3rd goal, and telling Andrew Alberts that you are not a nice guy for that late hit on Tavares.

3. Dwayne Roloson – he finally stopped a shootout shot!  He did let Jokinen get one – but the bottom line is that he can stop one, which made the less than full crowd at the NVMC quite happy!

4.  JT – it is so nice to see that people around the NHL are noticing that kid DOES has that something special.  People said he is slow and sluggish on defense, but I haven’t seen it.  He does not have breakneck speed, but he is NOT a liability by any stretch.

5.  Martinek – he has been so solid playing with Mark Streit.  He has saved at least 3 potential tap-in goals with his hard work.  He has played, in my mind, the best defense of his career.

The Minuses:

1. 120 seconds of collapse.  I am sitting in my seat, expecting it.  Seeing four Canes in front of Roloson was the first sign.  It seemed like they hung him out to dry.  The Isles got through it – thank God!

2.  Josh Bailey – he needs to get some breaks.  He played a much more aggressive game last night – which is an improvement – but he has to take more strides to prove his worth.

3.  Brendan Witt – It is so evident now – that his speed or lack of it – is such a liability.  He ended up as a 0 on the +- side – but is still at -9 for the season.  Hopefully he does not continue that pace.  He is just not a fit in the Gordon system. 

Well – a couple of days until the Caps and Ovie come a-calling.  Getting a victory here, can give this team such a great lift.  With erasing the Cane demons last night – it is time to get the sword out – to go and take a slash at Washington on Saturday.

Have a great hockey day folks…