A proverbial “attaboy” to the New York Islanders. There is a fair amount of turmoil plaguing the team off the ice concerning their future and they do not have the best team assembled and people do not expect very much from them. Despite all of that the Islanders are in the midst of a four game winning streak that they and their fans should be very excited about. Not only have they won four-in-a-row but they are beating good teams in the process including a 5-0 thumping of the Buffalo Sabres on Saturday. John Tavares is of course expected to be great and so far he has progressed well but he also has help from the likes of Matt Moulson and Kyle Okposo accompanied by solid goaltending from both Dwayne Roloson and Marty Biron (who despite a subpar record is putting up some good numbers). A playoff spot is unlikely to be in the Isles immediate future but as I wrote before (see: ) this team is going in the right direction in terms of its on ice play and has a very bright future.
Another “attaboy” to the Colorado Avalanche who are in first place in the Western Conference, which is a shock to everyone in the hockey world. The Avs are a team made up of mostly young guys who seem to be playing every game with house money because they don’t seem to know that they aren’t supposed to be any good. Perhaps the top story within the team is the performance of early season MVP candidate (yes I said it) Craig Anderson. Anderson has played all 15 of Colorado’s games and is posting staggering numbers including a .936 save percentage and 2.11 goals against average. It’s unlikely that the Avs can keep this going all season, but for now the fans in Colorado should enjoy being on top they’ve been a great hockey city since day one and certainly deserve it.
A major “tisk-tisk” to Tim Thomas of the Boston Bruins who is not playing at all like the reigning Vezina Trophy winner. Over the years people have worried about Thomas’ style because it is kind of a free-for-all that resulted in him spending a lot of time in the minor leagues. Was last year and aberration? Perhaps, but if he does not get it together the Bruins will likely go looking for a replacement because expectations for this year are very high in Boston. Surely the Bruins’ early struggles do not fall solely on Thomas but he will be an easy scapegoat if the team fails to turn the corner.
Another major “tisk-tisk” to the Carolina Hurricanes. Last year they reached the Conference Finals, and this year with essentially the same team (if not a better one) as last year they have 7 points through 13 games… Enough said.