Although the New York Islanders started the 2010-11 season with some scrappy promise, it seems true that the team’s hopes were indeed crushed in the preseason when lifeblood defenseman Mark Streit and budding power forward Kyle Okposo went down with significant injuries. The already limited team lost its best defenseman and one of its most important forwards before the first puck was dropped on the season.
Considering the fact that the Islanders are deep in the league’s cellar (they’re currently the second worst team in the NHL, only ahead of the dreadful New Jersey Devils), it would be wise for the team to practice due diligence with his return. Surely Okposo is chomping at the bit to get back into game action, but if the team feels that he isn’t ready to return at all this season, they shouldn’t rush him back.
When you take into account the rough road to recovery for goalie Rick DiPietro, the team has clear examples of how long it can take for a player to make it back from injury. On the bright side, Okposo is suffering from shoulder problems rather than DiPietro’s knee issues, so it’s something that isn’t as likely to be a recurring problem. (At least it seems that way; we are not a house of learned doctors here at PHT.)
Much like the Islanders themselves, we’ll play the wait-and-see game regarding Okposo’s condition.
Video: Canucks escape Arizona with another win for the moms
With their mothers traveling on the road trip — Matt Bartkowski‘s mom, Beth, has become a cult hero in Vancouver after another priceless media interview — the Canucks took back-to-back wins, moving them right back into the thick of the playoff fight in the Western Conference.
Up by a goal in the third period, defenseman Alex Biega played the hero, pulling the puck out of the crease after it got by Ryan Miller on a backhand shot from Kyle Chipchura, maintaining Vancouver’s lead.
Phaneuf burned on Zetterberg game-winner in Sens debut
“I put my stick there, he put (the puck) under and he made a good shot. I’ve got to have a better stick in that situation, but you’ve got to give him credit for that play.”
Phaneuf finished the night with a minus-one rating and two hits in almost 22 minutes of ice time, putting him second among Sens defensemen in that category behind Erik Karlsson, who played a whopping 33:30.
Phaneuf drilled Red Wings defenseman Danny DeKeyser with a hard slap shot early in the third period.
DeKeyser played one more shift — all of 10 seconds — before exiting the game.
Blashill says DeKeyser has a bruise, not a break. Will know more tomorrow, but probably day-to-day
The New York Rangers are likely too far behind the Washington Capitals to take any legitimate run at the Atlantic Division down the stretch.
But winners now of four straight, the Rangers have opened up a bit of a gap between them and other Eastern Conference teams in the playoff race. New York scored a 3-0 win over the Pittsburgh Penguins, winners in six of their last seven games, on Wednesday.
“Now, ultimately what they’re hoping from a Wideman perspective and the Players’ Association is that commissioner Gary Bettman will rule and he will reduce the number of games suspended down from 20,” said Dreger during a segment on NBCSN.
“Is he going to reduce it by three games? Five games seems a bit of a stretch. And when might he do that? There’s no timeline on this.”
7 hours of back and forth legal speak…otherwise known as the Wideman appeal has concluded in NYC.