Live Blog From Nassau Coliseum: Isles vs. Senators
Today I will be doing another live blog from the NYI Blog Box in section 201 at Nassau Coliseum as the Islanders play host to the Ottawa Senators. The Isles will be playing after an exciting 5-4 win over the Tampa Bay Lightning yesterday afternoon in which they trailed twice, both in the first and second periods. The Senators had a rough start to the season but suddenly went on fire and are now 5th in the East, one point behind the Pittsburgh Penguins. They too played yesterday, having lost on the road to the Detroit Red Wings 4-1. Although both teams played yesterday, the Isles should have a slight advantage being that they haven't had to travel, but they cannot focus on that factor since they will be going against all-stars such as Daniel Alfredsson and Jason Spezza.
Be sure to check back later this afternoon as the puck drops at 5PM if you are home watching the game. Feel free to leave questions and comments at any time!
4:59 PM - Just a few minutes away from puck drop. Several Presidential mascots, plus Sparky of course, are in attendance skating around the ice in honor of President's day, which is tomorrow. Sparky is wearing a heart-plated New York Islanders jersey in honor of Valentine's day...okay I was just kidding about that last one.
20:00 - Here is your starting line-up for the Isles: Roloson in net, Streit and Gervais on defense, and Comeau, Park and Bergenheim to on offense.
18:52 - Matt Martin still on the first line with Tavares and Okposo.
16:46 - Bit of a sloppy start so far for both teams but the play has been bouncing around in the Isles zone. The Isles have iced it twice, the second one could have been waved off if the ref really wanted to keep play moving.
16:05 - Like I said, sloppy hockey, Jesse Joensuu picks up a missed pass in the neutral zone and carries in for the first Islander shot on goal.
14:25 - Roloson made two huge key saves in tight where the Senators failed to bury a loose puck home. Shots are 5-1 in favor of the Senators.
13:44 - Bergenheim's sturggles continue. Chris Neil fumbled the puck at the Islanders blue-line where Sean could have started an odd-man rush with Neil caught deep. He missed the puck and the Senators defense were able to feed the puck down to Neil. He got the initial shot on net and the rebound was buried by Jarko Ruutu. The other assist goes to Winchester.
11:38 - Shots are 7-2 Senators, but the Islanders are about to go on their first power play of the game. Spezza goes to the box for a hooking minor.
9:44 - Islanders so far have mustered only one shot that was easy save for Brian Elliot.
9:05 - Schremp is centering Joensuu and Comeau with Kohn playing with Meyer just like yesterday. The other lines are Martin-Tavares-Okposo, Moulson-Nielsen-Hunter, and Bergenheim-Weight-Park. The defense goes Streit-Gervais, Sutton-MacDonald, Meyer-Kohn.
7:11 - Slurpees anyone? Shots are 8-4 Sens. Neither team has really been able to establish a flow to their game thus far.
6:06 - Roloson with a solid glove save on a shot from Alexei Kovalev in the high slot.
4:49 - Schremp did a good job on the back-check to break up a cross-ice feed in the slot. This team needs to learn how to be more physical. Spezza came in over the blue-line, played with the puck, and Joensuu, Okposo and Tavares all surrounded him but didn't touch him. At least one of them should have tried to put him on his ass.
4:06 - And the crowd suddenly has a reason to wake up...Blake Comeau cradles the puck through the neutral zone into Senators territory after starting a rush from his own end. He took a slapshot from the near side boards that gets through everyone and beats Elliot glove side. Beaaaaautiful shot. This game is tied at 1. Assists go to Park and Kohn.
39.0 - Okposo attempts a sweet behind the back pass to himself that caused Brian Lee to take a tripping penalty. Isles go to the PP for a second time.
0:00 - The period ends with the game tied at one a piece. Shots are 11-9 in favor of the Senators after the Isles were being out-shot 10-4 before Comeau's goal. For two consecutive games Park and Comeau find their way on the score-sheet and the referee's microphone turns on for the crowd to hear him yell, "NO!!" in regards to an icing.
Intermission - Nothing like having the father's of our country duke it out at center ice. The Presidential mascots raced around the rink for some fun games during the break. Teddy Roosevelt crashed into the boards on his own face first, decked George Washington into the visiting team's bench, and then Abraham Lincoln fought George Washington in front of the Islanders runway. They dropped the gloves, slugged it out, and the crowd stared on not knowing what to make of the insanity. With that, I am going to go grab a beer.
20:00 - The announcer just informed the crowd that this is Dwayne Roloson's 500th NHL game. Fellow blogger Ken Dick from Okposo.net joked with a follow up, "...and his last as an Islander." We'll find out if he was right after the Olympic break with the trade rumors that have been swiriling around Roly and Sutton being moved by 3 PM on March 3rd.
19:59 - The Isles go back to work on the power play. Schremp, Okposo and Martin start on offense with Streit and Weight working the points.
18:11 - The Islanders fail to connect with the man-advantage again and JT misses on an in close chance with Elliot. He was fed by Okposo down-low behind the net and shot it to the right of the post.
17:41 - Tavares just got hit with a home-run pass as the Senators were changing but couldn't handle the puck as it bounced off his blade.
16:50 - Bruno Gervais launhed an 81 MPH slap shot off the face-off on net that gets steered aside into the crowd by Elliot.
14:55 - Nielsen skates in and beats the defense wide for a shot on net that gets knocked into the corner. The Isles get the puck back to Hunter who then makes a nice move around Winchester and gets a weak shot to the front of the net that Elliot couldn't control. Moulson picks up the loose puck, dekes to his left, and slides it past the Sens netminder to make this a 2-1 hockey game in favor of the Islanders.
13:57 - During the TV time-out a fan asks his wife to marry him on the jumbo tron during the Valentine's Day annoncements. So far I am 3-for-3 with these proposals.
13:39 - Ryan Shannon went to the box before the commerical for a Holding The Stick penalty.
12:17 - Tavares keeps getting the chances. He hacked away at a loose puck at least twice before the ref blew the whistle. They eventually will go in.
11:09 - Ken and I have to laugh...what is with the Isles suddenly realizing they are playing a hockey game in the second period? The shots are now 22-15 in favor of the Isles.
9:48 - Comeau goes to the box for a minor boarding penalty. The Sens did not seem happy about that play as a few of them tried to get in Blake's face.
8:47 - Bergenheim gets a short-handed breakaway and shoots wide. The Sens then make a poor pass attempt and it lands on Sean's stick at the top of the right face-off circle. He takes a wrist shot from the high slot and that one got on net but was an easy save for Elliot.
7:20 - Roloson makes a beautiful pad save on a shot from Spezza through tons of traffic in front. The Isles kill the penalty and seem to have gained a little bit of momentum.
6:03 - Blake Comeau scores again! The Isles work the puck from the point, to Doug Weight along the far-side boards, who then passed the puck down-low to a pinching Andrew MacDonald. He feeds Comeau right in front. The first shot is saved by Elliot but the rebound is roofed to make this a 3-1 hockey game.
4:58 - Loudville mystery. Does anyone know what the hell the fans in Loudville keep singing? It seems like they have made up their own New York Islanders theme song that no one has ever heard before.
4:25 - Head to Wendy's for your second day of free chili tomorrow, folks.
1:06 - The Senators score but the goal is immediately waved off by the referee due to a delayed penalty to Regin for an interference minor.
0:00 - The Isles do not score at the start of the power play but Alfredsson takes a slashing minor at the end of the period. The Islanders will have 54 seconds with a two-man advantage to start the third period.
20:00 - Third period is set to begin and the Isles start with Okposo...at center? Weight and Martin are on the wing. Streit and MacDonald play the points to start the 5-on-3.
18:57 - Okposo gets a beautiful pass in front from Streit and shanks the one-timer wide and over the net. He literally had the whole left side begging him to put the puck in the net.
17:56 - The Isles fail to connect on both power plays. Who would have seen that one coming? Back to five-on-five hockey.
16:13 - This is what happens when you fail to connect with a two-man advantage to start the period. Kovalev scores on a rebound from Shannon and Regin.
13:14 - Highlight of the third period was a "Snooki Cam" looking for the best Snooki look-a-like in the crowd. The girl they chose was NOT happy by any means.
12:12 - Bruno Gervais goes to the box with a slashing minor. Shots are 31-30 in favor of the Isles. This is a crucial PK for the orange and blue.
11:31 - Kyle Okposo, as usual, making something out of nothing. With Alfredsson at the point on the PP he was able to blow past him, pull a move in front, and get a shot off as he was cutting across that Elliot steered over the crease.
10:47 - With :36 seconds left on the power play Spezza puts the rebound home to tie this game at 3. Assists go to Alfredsson and Kovalev.
9:14 - The Isles have just gave the Senators the lead. With Meyer in the corner and Sutton covering the man in front, Fisher was left all alone to the left of Roloson to gently tap a pass home to make this a 4-3 hockey game in favor of the Sens. Assists go to Kuba and Kovalev.
8:22 - Roloson makes a nice glove save on a 2-on-1 rush. He's certainly not the reason the Isles have lost the lead and his frustration after the fourth goal when he slapped the puck out of the crease into the boards said it all.
5:51 - Matt Martin finishes his shift with two HUGE hits, one that knocks off a Senator helmet and a second that sends a Senator off the glass and on his ass. The crowd erupts and the Isles now have posession of the puck in the offensive zone.
2:48 - The Islanders are pressing hard but the Senators are doing a good job of taking away any scoring chances the Isles try to make.
1:06 - Roloson is pulled and the Isles frantically look for the tying goal.
26.5 - Islanders take a time-out after the Senators ice the puck. It will be interesting to see who Gordon sends out to win this draw. My bet is Frans Nielsen. (I was right)
11.4 - Nielsen won the draw and Bruno hacked away at the puck as it was stuck between Volchenkov...a few of us are wondering why this isn't a penalty shot, but the face-off comes to the left of Elliot.
0:00 - A flurry of hacks and pokes occur until the final buzzer. The Isles lose this one 4-3. It will not be fun going down to the locker room tonight, but that's where I am headed. Final shots are 37-35 Isles. Thanks for stopping by.
Follow me on Twitter!