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Islanders Hockey Blog | Page 12

Written by Christian A. | 13 February 2012

Via Islanders press release: 

UNIONDALE, NY (February 13, 2012) –
The New York Islanders announced today that defenseman Ty Wishart has been recalled from loan from the Bridgeport Sound Tigers of the American Hockey League (AHL). The club also returned forward Rhett Rakhshani on loan to the Sound Tigers.

Wishart, 23, has four goals and 11 assists in 48 games this season with the Sound Tigers. Acquired by the Islanders in a trade with the Tampa Bay Lightning on Jan. 1, 2011, Wishart appeared in 20 National Hockey League (NHL) games last season, scoring one goal with four assists and a plus-5 rating.

The San Jose Sharks selected Wishart in the first round, 16th overall, of the 2006 NHL Entry Draft. In five professional seasons, the Belleville, ON, native has appeared in 193 AHL games with the Worcester Sharks, Norfolk Admirals and the Sound Tigers.

Rakhshani, 23, appeared in five games with the Islanders during his first call up of the season. He has nine goals and 16 assists in 27 games this season with the Sound Tigers. The Orange, CA, native is third on the Sound Tigers in scoring with 25 points, despite playing in 27 of the team’s 48 games.

Last season, Rakhshani led the Sound Tigers in goals (24), assists (38), points (62) and power-play goals in 66 games as a rookie. He represented the Sound Tigers at the 2011 AHL All-Star Classic and was named to the AHL All-Rookie First Team. The Islanders selected Rakhshani in the fourth round, 100th overall, of the 2006 National Hockey League Entry Draft.

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Written by Christian A. | 13 February 2012

Uniondale, NY -- After a tough loss to the Florida Panthers earlier, Islander greats along with some local celebrities and some lucky fans hit the ice for the Met-RX Skate with the Greats game. Chico Resch, Doug Weight, Mike Bossy, Clark Gillies, Bobby Nystrom Butch Goring, Eric Cairns, Garth Snow all took the ice. Also NFL star and morning radio host Boomer Esiason and Joe Terranova of CNBC joined them on the ice.

For Boomer, it was extra special because his son Gunner, who has battled cystic fibrosis, joined him on the ice.

“Anytime that Gunner and I can be on the ice together it’s a dream come true for me,” Boomer said with a smile. “Given what he’s fighting and everything and he’s out there sweating and it’s great. As long as he’s happy I’m happy.”

As for the game, anyone who stuck around was treated to a fun game with smiles all around and some friendly chirping. Interestingly enough it was Boomer and former Islander captain Doug Weight who mixed it up the most out there. At one point Boomer actually threw Weight’s stick into the stands.

“He was trying to cheat,” Boomer said with a grin. “I just gotta make sure he knows there’s a guy out there who’s got a presence. I know he’s got a bad back and some concussion problems so I figured I’d take that to him and play to his weakness. Which is my strength just throwing the body around. That’s what I do, I’m a grinder.”

In talking to Weight after the game he conceded Boomer hit him three or four times, but enjoyed having him out there for the game.

“He’s a good guy,” Weight said. “Lives on the island and does a great job at what he does. It’s a lot of fun and we loved having him out here. They got a great family, so it’s always a pleasure to see Boom.”

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Written by Christian A. | 12 February 2012

Uniondale, NY --
The Islanders playoff hopes took another hit this afternoon with a 4-1 loss to the Florida Panthers. The Islanders scored the games opening goal, but saw their lead evaporate after the Panthers tied the game at one in the first and scored three unanswered goals in the second period.

“It wasn’t a very good first two periods for us,” a frustrated John Tavares said. “We did some good things in the third period, but not good enough, especially in a big game like this.”

The Islanders jumped to an early 1-0 lead in the first after PA Parenteau gave Frans Nielsen a good breakout pass. Nielsen finished the play off by firing one past Jose Theodore on the Islanders first shot of the game.

The lead would last less than a period. Tyson Strachan scored off the face-off in the Islanders end to make tie the game at one late in the first period. The Panthers blew the game wide open in the second beginning with a Tomas Fleischmann goal early in the period. Kris Versteeg made it 3-1 off a power play goal at 11:41 and Jack Skille put the dagger in the Isles heart when he scored to make it 4-1.

“We had the opening goal we wanted and had a decent start for the first five,” Tavares said. “But then we just were not playing our game for a good period and a half… Some breakdowns and we didn’t capitalize on some of our opportunities and I don’t think we made it as difficult on them until later on in the game.”

“We didn’t come out and play very hard today,” Matt Martin added after the game. “Once again, we knew what was at stake…another big (game) against Florida and we don’t come out and play well enough.”

A win today would have moved the Islanders into 11th in the east and six points out of a playoff spot. Instead they remain eight points out with tough matchups against the Jets and Blues.

“These games are so important at this time of year with where we are in the standings,” Tavares said. “There is no excuse for us to not be ready to play or have our feet moving or have our game going off the bat. We have to improve in that area.”

“We gotta take a look in the mirror here,” Martin later said. “Figure out what we wanna be. We wanna be a playoff team, so we gotta come play every night here on out and bring our best effort.”

After the game the question was raised whether the back-to-back games had any affect on the Islanders play. Matt Martin didn’t believe it did.

“They played an afternoon game yesterday too,” he said. “There’s no reason for them to have more jump than us. They’re on the road and we played both games at home. I don’t think that’s really an excuse, I think we just didn’t prepare ourselves well enough for the game today”

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Written by Christian A. | 12 February 2012


- Greetings from the Nassau Coliseum press box on Marvel Superhero Day.

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Written by Christian A. | 12 February 2012

Islanders’ general manager Garth Snow has no plans of moving Evgeni Nabokov at the trade deadline.

"We have no intention of moving Evgeni," Snow told ESPN.com. "He’s been great for us. His performance speaks for itself."

The 36-year-old goaltender has been on a roll for the Islanders. He’s won 11 of his last16 starts. In 28 games Nabokov has posted a .917 save percentage along with a 2.19 goals against average.

He stopped a season high 45 shots to shutout the Flyers on Tuesday and pushed aside 34 shots Saturday in the 2-1 win over the Kings.

The ESPN article suggests that, while talks contract negations have not begun between the Isles and Nabokov, it’s not out of the question later in the season. Though whether or not Nabokov wants to stay on Long Island is unclear.

Talks between PA Parenteau and the Islanders have begun. Snow said that Parenteau’s agent and himself have had dialog. Parenteau is another unrestricted free agent who is believed to be a possible trading chip at the deadline.

However it does not seem the Islanders see themselves being sellers at the deadline.

"Yeah, we have a lot of belief in that locker room," Snow said. "Within the last few weeks, we’ve really turned it up a notch as a team. Our specialty teams have improved. We’re just looking forward to the next game."

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Written by Christian A. | 07 February 2012

The Islanders have locked up Frans Nielsen to 4-year, $11 million deal according to TSN’s Bob McKenzie. Last month a Danish website reported they were close to re-signing the Danish center.

According to McKenzie, Nielsen’s cap annual cap hit will only be $2.75 million.  With his year-by-year salary breaking down as follows: $2 million, $2.5 million, $3 million and $3.5 million.

In 51 games for the Islanders this season Nielsen has 9 goals and 16 assists for 25 points. He scored two goals and an assist on Saturday night against buffalo and is on pace for a 39 point season.

With Nielsen re-signed it’s highly unlikely that he will be moved before or at the trade deadline. The deal will be made official tomorrow. 

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Written by Christian A. | 06 February 2012

The Islander have called up defensemen Aaron Ness this morning, after they lost Travis Hamonic and Milan Jurcina suffered injuries in the previous two games. Hamonic is out for two weeks with a broken nose and Jurcina is out with an elbow laceration.

Ness is expected to make his season debute against the Flyers tomorrow night. This season has two goals and 15 assists for 17 points this season for the Sound Tigers.

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