Now that the New York Rangers have officially leapfrogged them in the division, the Islanders must have that mindset to take back what’s rightfully theirs.
Well, it’s finally happened – those bums from Broadway have officially overtaken the New York Islanders for first place in the Metropolitan Division.
It took many months of hockey, but captain John Tavares needs to rally the troops and rightfully take back what’s theirs – the Metro.
- 7 pm ET, Nassau Coliseum
- TV: MSG+
- Ottawa Senators (31-24-11), 73 points, 6th in Atlantic Division
- New York Islanders (43-22-4), 90 points, 2nd in Metropolitan Division
Tonight the Isles will host the Ottawa Senators in their first appearance since losing to those hot New York Rangers three nights ago. The team must take that attitude of enough is enough.
Sure, it’s true – the only thing that seemingly matters in the NHL is to get into the tournament. Regardless of the seed or home ice situation, any of the 16 playoff teams can make a serious run (see the 8th seeded Los Angeles Kings from a year ago as evidence).
A hot goalie and a team coming together at the right time means everything.
That’s just the point though, as this squad needs to once again hit that high note at the right time heading into the spring.
Tonight will be a nice first test as they face a Senators team who is hot themselves, 9-1-1 in their last 11 games. Goaltender Andrew Hammond has come out of oblivion to take the Eastern Conference by storm while helping the Senators barely stay in the playoff race (seven points behind Boston).
Because this is the second of a back to back, the Isles could get a break and face Craig Anderson instead.
In the team’s other two matchups this season, the Islanders beat the Senators 3-2 in overtime December 2 at the Nassau Coliseum and came out victorious 2-1 in Ottawa on December 4.
With Johnny Boychuk coming off his brand spanking new seven-year contract and the Rangers still having three games in hand, the Isles need to make a big time statement tonight at home.
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