Fan Retrospective : Isles Grow Up


Mar. 29, 2012; Uniondale, NY, USA; Television host John Walsh addresses the crowd before the game between the New York Islanders and the Pittsburgh Penguins at Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Debby Wong-USA TODAY Sports

Middletown, N. J. – With two submissions remaining in the official EyesOnIsles inbox (including this one) it looks like the fan retrospectives will end tomorrow afternoon.

If you still would like to take part, and we would urge you to do so, please send your thoughts to and we will pick up right where we left off!

We can guarantee that nothing will go unpublished! Thanks for reading as always.

Submitted by : Cord Lehman

Walk into venerable Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum on January 19, 2013.  All of a sudden, you come from a dark, dreary, depressing and sometimes suicidal thought NHL lockout to the most historic building in the NHL still left standing for Game 1 of a 48 game schedule.

I got sick a day earlier and although my parents kept begging me to stay home and not go, hockey runs my life.  This entire season I knew would be a harbinger of things to come.  No need for an annual November collapse.  No need for Ranger fans to troll into our building thrice this year.  Our time was now.  Everyone else’s time was over.

After a heartbreaking 2-0 loss to the Penguins to close out March, the winning began, and the push for the playoffs was in full force.  As I walked into ‘Fort Never-lose’ on April 13 against the Rangers, the building was loud, but just short of a playoff atmosphere.  The last time I heard a playoff atmosphere was in 2007 during game 4 when the Isles should have been credited with a goal to tie it at 3 in the 3rd period and Ryan Smyth’s first game as an Islander.

Fast forward to Game 4 of the 2013 Playoffs, and I can’t decide if I’m happy or if I’m nervous. The building being so loud, I loved it all.  A goal by John Tavares makes this building louder than Detroit singing to a classic or Chicago during the national anthem.  Game 6 was the last game of the season for the Islanders.  I’ve never seen overtime playoff hockey in person before, nor have I ever seen a playoff handshake line.

While disappointed with the outcome, I knew this team would be ready for a Stanley Cup before the move to Barclays Center.  Just by making it to OT in Game 6, and the fans staying after the loss to cheer on the team as they make the lap around the Coliseum ice, what this season meant to me was a success.  A success that Garth Snow has to build on.  If the Islanders could get Ryan Strome into the lineup next year, and can acquire a guy like either Nathan Horton or Milan Lucic, or you know what? even keep the same lineup as Game 6, the Stanley Cup is coming back to Long Island.