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Islanders: History In Shortened NHL Seasons

UNIONDALE, NY - MAY 11: Goalie Evgeni Nabokov #20 of the New York Islanders and Sidney Crosby #87 of the Pittsburgh Penguins greet on the ice after the Islanders were defeated and eliminated from the playoffs by the Penguins in Game Six of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals during the 2013 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum on May 11, 2013 in Uniondale, New York. (Photo by Paul Bereswill/Getty Images)
UNIONDALE, NY - MAY 11: Goalie Evgeni Nabokov #20 of the New York Islanders and Sidney Crosby #87 of the Pittsburgh Penguins greet on the ice after the Islanders were defeated and eliminated from the playoffs by the Penguins in Game Six of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals during the 2013 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum on May 11, 2013 in Uniondale, New York. (Photo by Paul Bereswill/Getty Images)
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The NHL will play a shortened season in 2021. Here’s how the Islanders have done in shortened seasons in their past history.

So the Islanders are set to play a shortened season in 2021. I think I speak for a far majority of hockey fans when I say that I don’t care how many games they’re able to play, I just want to see some hockey (done as safely as possible).

This past year was the most recent time the Islanders had to play in a shortened season, and as we know it was rather successful as they appeared in their first Eastern Conference Final since 1993.

But what about the other times? Two other times in the Islanders’ history did they have to play a shortened season.

1994-1995

The first time this happened was in the 1994-1995 season due to the lockout. Here the issue was the salary cap. The owners wanted there to be a cap, while the players were very obviously against the idea which caused a shortened 48 game season.

For the Islanders, they had a tough go of it that year. It was Lorne Henning’s first year behind the bench after Al Arbour stepped away and they struggled. The team went 15-28-5 for last place in the Atlantic Division.

Ray Ferraro led the team in points with 43 (22 goals, 21 assists) with Pierre Turgeon trailing far behind at 27 points for the next closest. That season was also Ziggy Palffy’s rookie season and he had 10 goals in 33 games.

2012-2013

Skipping over the completely lost 2004-2005 season, the next time there was a shortened season was 2012-2013. Owners wanted to reduce the players’ revenue share from 57 to 46 percent. They also wanted to extend UFA status from seven years to 10. Clearly, the players wouldn’t go for it.

The 2012-2013 season saw 48 games as a result and for the Islanders, it was their first playoff season since 2006-2007. John Tavares and Matt Moulson were phenomenal for the Islanders that year and they also got a surprise season from Brad Boyes, 35 points (10 goals, 25 assists), who they found on the cheap.

The Isles would finish 24-17-7 for third place in the Atlantic and they’d take on the heavily favored Pittsburgh Penguins in the first round of the playoffs. The Isles bowed out in six games, suffering two OT losses, on the back of spotty goalie play.

Still, 2013 was remembered fondly as it was the beginning of the Islanders turnaround in the Jack Capuano era.

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There is still no sure answer for the 2021 season, but it’s looking to be somewhere around 56 games with the season starting in mid-January.

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