Tonight is one of my favorite match ups, if not for the mere fact that we are playing the Capitals – a team that has always given them fits, but also because they get to see Alexander Ovechkin. Ovie has reached the 50 goal plateau, again – for a total of 100 points (53g, 47a). Also important to note, Caps d-man Mike Green is having a superb season as well – 67 points (28g, 39a) and leads all defensemen. Our own version of Green – Mark Streit (16g, 39a – 55pts) is going to sit out tonight’s game with a groin strain, it could actually be a blessing in disguise – we all know how I feel about these games here down the stretch.
The Capitals are just a few points shy of securing their second consecutive playoff berth, so look for them to come out with intensity. The past few teams we have played were sort of taken by surprise with the play of the Islanders, but without Streit on the backend – it is certainly a hole to fill.
Your callups for tonight: Joe Callahan, Joel Rechlicz
Rechlicz’s obvious dance partner tonight – Donald Brashear, is unlikely to happen as he is out with a knee injury. That is a fight that would be an interesting one, maybe next year.
Look for Jack Hillen, Thomas Pock and Joe Callahan to get extra minutes tonight in Streit’s absence.
If you want to follow along on the game thread we do over on Lighthouse Hockey, please do – we have plenty of wings and beer to go around!
As always, I want to see a spirited contest that allows the Islanders youth an opportunity to grow and earn more experience in the NHL. As the days wind down here, I would prefer the least amount of points as possible. I know, I know, it’s a horrible way to think – it is what it is.
A feature that has been missing for a few weeks, or even months now – the Live Tracker is back for those who may or may not be able to follow along via the radio or television.