Islanders Have Proven They’re Among NHL’s Top Teams
By Brian Wagner
No matter how well the New York Islanders perform on the ice and in the standings there are still doubts about the team’s quality. Enough is enough – the Islanders are a top NHL team.
Please humor me, New York Islanders fans (and any fan across the NHL). With an open mind, ask yourself this question – how many games does a team need to play to prove that they are who the standings show them to be?
10 games? 25? A half-season? Full season? 100 games?
How about 137 games?
If a team over the past nearly two seasons (137 regular-season games) had these rankings, would your first thought be “man, this team has some serious needs!” or “this definitely isn’t a team built for a playoff run!”?
- Points: 4th in the NHL (175)
- Point percentage: 4th (.639)
- Wins: 4th (81)
- Goals against: 1st (340)
- Goals against per game: 2nd (2.48)
- Penalty kill: 15th (79.8%)
No, it’s just a bias from both fans and detractors because it’s the Islanders and it is still hard for people to understand that this recently-lowly franchise and this lesser-known group of players can collectively be this good.
If your first reaction was that the power play still sucks, they don’t score enough or that player X is overrated, you’re not thinking rationally (or you’re reading junk like this).
Time to get your head out of the clouds, or wherever else you’ve put it, and look at the team as a defensively-elite, gritty, hard-working, WINNING hockey club with strong leadership.
This shouldn’t be the overachieving or surprising Isles any longer. This should be the NHL-elite New York Islanders from this point forward.
Read any blog or listen to Brian Boucher ramble on the telecast last night and you hear the same thing – the Isles need a missing piece or two. Here’s the thing – the standings prove they are already one of the best teams in the NHL.
The only thing they need is to stay healthy and keep playing the way they play.