Well, yesterday’s game couldn’t get much more important than it was. Games against divisional rivals when the race for the playoffs are so tight are always must win game, especially when the opponent was only two points up on you. In what was labeled as “Fan Appreciation Day”, there was a bevy of things that proved so; give aways, prizes and even a feature in the Islanders Illustrated on Bill Hayes. Hayes, for those who are unfamiliar just recently attended his 1500th home game – he has only missed 4 games – EVER! That is an unbelievable statistic. Hayes also found himself being acknowledged on the scoreboard during the third period. I am lucky, because he sits in my section (309) and actually in my row to my left, so I got to see his reaction to the appreciation from the fans, which was priceless.
Bill Hayes made our entire section lucky yesterday – 309 was selected as the NY Lotto lucky section (we received a cooler that I forgot under my seat), the guy to my right was picked to match the Conn Smythe winners to their respected years (he won a State Farm prize pack for correctly doing so) and the best part – I won the 50/50 raffle much to the bewilderment of myself and everyone around me.
The unlucky part of the day however, the Islanders completely tanked. I felt they played an outstanding first period and played good hockey for 16 minutes – until the Flyers made some magic happen in front of DiPietro. The Islanders would tie the game on a rare power play tally from Guerin in the second – but wouldn’t do much more the rest of the game. They surrendered a power play goal, another shorthanded goal and then an empty netter allowing the Flyers to walk away with 2 points and a 3 goal victory.
Bill Guerin’s goal was his 20th of the season and marked only the second time in NHL history a player has scored 20 or more goals on six separate teams. He would tell us in the locker room he wasn’t so sure it was good or bad, but acknowledged it as an achievement none-the-less. What his goal did represent was how to correct the Islanders power play, he shot the puck while players were parked in front of Biron which is something they don’t do often enough – traffic in front of the net. It was also Guerin’s first goal in 9 games, second in 19 – ending a god awful drought.
Not much else really to report on, as it was a completely horrible game otherwise.