I don’t know if I’m lost in my own spinzone or if this inclination actually has legs but something about this Islanders team has me thinking there’s more to the season than what we’ve witnessed these first 25 games.
Currently sitting dead last in their division, there hasn’t been many positive narratives one could take away from this season thus far. Their $7-million dollar man in Andrew Ladd is sporting a whole 5 total points through 25 games, their powerplay unit is as useful as Jack Capuano’s barber, and their stud prospects in Mat Barzal, Josh Ho-Sang, and Ryan Pulock are all all either injured, in the AHL getting healthied on a weekly basis, or currently on a Bus from Seattle to Kamloops playing WHL hockey.
Yet for a team who just last night made it back to .500 hockey for the first time since October, they keep giving us reasons to believe they can still contend.
As your fav bloggers fav Isles blogger originally blogged, the annual November Western roadtrip proved to be a turning point for the season. As upon returning from California the Islanders have gained 9 of their last 10 possible points and are beginning to look like a team finding their form.
While the back to back wins over Pittsburgh and Washington were a start, last nights 4-2 win over the Division leading Rangers was the one to do it. The one that’s going to suck everyone including myself right back into the mix. And whether or not it’s the same old song and dance, and these few wins will end up meaning anything at all in the grand scheme of things, it’s nice to see this team finally showing the one thing fans have been dying to see this season. Some life.
The Ladd-Strome-Prince line is finally showing that Capuano’s forward line generator can in fact strike gold from time to time and has provided a line combo with some sort of fluidity & productivity on a consistent basis for the first time all year. While the overly-forced Center/Winger relationship that is JT and Josh Bailey is continuing to find it’s form slowly but surely. JT is putting up his points, as he always will, but seeing him pick up goals in the same fashion as last night’s was a sight for sore eyes.
With this offense finally finding the back of the net, and both Halak & Greiss continuing to outdo one another with each given start, this Isles club is far from drawing it’s last breath for the year and are beginning to dig themselves out of the whole they built all throughout October and November.
With strong wins over all 3 division rivals within a week and a little under 60 games remaining on the year, as long as this team keeps giving me reasons to believe I’m staying for away from the D word.
Now just imagine Andrew Ladd decides to be Andrew Ladd again?