Top Shelf : Islanders Daily : 9/10/2013


Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

2 days……7 days…..24 days.

What is this anyway? A math class? A guessing game? Nope, its the internal New York Islanders countdown to hockey clock.

The official opening of training camp at Barclays Center in Brooklyn takes place this Thursday with the first session expected to begin around 10:45am. With 60 players expected to be in camp, there will be two groups broken up into morning and afternoon sessions.

In 7 days, the Islanders will open their pre-season schedule with a game against the Calgary Flames at the Scotiabank Saddledome.

In 24 days, the regular season will be upon us with the Isles facing off against the New Jersey Devils in Newark.

What an exciting time to not just be a fan of the greatest game on ice but also of the blue and orange. The Islanders are expected to continue their rise up the NHL ranks this season (although some still are predicting a slide) with new additions Cal Clutterbuck, Pierre-Marc Bouchard and Peter Regin added to an already talented squad led by new captain John Tavares. And that is leaving out any of the talented rookies we saw at the preliminary camp run by Bridgeport head man Scott Pellerin. It’s expected at least one defenseman from that group will make the senior squad and dress in the opener.

Once again the Islanders PR staff did a fantastic job yesterday in presenting Tavares as the 14th leader in franchise history. As a prelude to the annual golf tournament that benefits the Islanders children’s foundation, Garth Snow made the announcement in front of a packed throng of players and media. Head coach Jack Capuano was on hand to lend his obvious support and make some comments of his own.

Tavares did what he has done every day throughout his first four years as a professional; make thoughtful, respectful comments about the organization and his teammates. Seemingly always thinking before he talks and making sure his words come out correctly,  the blossoming superstar is no doubt the perfect choice at the perfect time for this franchise.

Let’s take a quick skate around the league and see what transpired on Monday…

  • Dustin Byfuglien showed up for an informal skate with his Winnipeg teammates and, according to Gary Lawless of the Winnipeg Free Press, looked “slimmer and fitter than he has in his time with the Jets.” – (Uh oh……)
  • Finality to the Daniel Cleary saga as Rick Tocchet of CSN reported yesterday he has decided on the Philadelphia Flyers – (Great, but can he play defense? I didn’t think so.)
  • The Calgary Flames have officially announced the retirement of goaltender Miikka Kiprusoff – (A true legend in Calgary will go down gracefully. Good luck in post-NHL life, Kipper)
  • Claude Noel has liked what he’s seen from Evander Kane this off-season. – (You mean, he has not been flashing the contents of his wallet on Twitter?)
  • David Steckel will attend Minnesota Wild camp (good for the veteran, a class locker room presence and above average penalty killer)

In Case You Missed It

Two Minutes For Tweeting (John Tavares Edition)

No comments from me today, the tweets below say it all……..