Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Isles Lose to Leafs 5 - 3, But Poulin is the Biggest Loss

Note: For in-game report from the Coliseum, please see Hockeybuzz.com.

First of all, I'd like to say that I think all the bad luck the Islanders endured tonight is the fault of ScottyHockey, but not the fault of his friend, James from jerseysandhockeylove.com, who was visiting the Coliseum for the first time.

Now, I didn't actually see what happened. I was chatting by the glass while I was taking photos. All of a sudden, this happened.

WTF??? On the day the Islanders had to announce the end of Trent Hunter's season and the placement of Blake Comeau on the IR due to concussion symptons, starting goali Kevin Poulin was down on the ice and not getting up. He had to be helped off the ice and could not put any pressure on his knee. Mikko Koskinen was set to make his NHL debut.

He said he had a light meal before the game so he wasn't worried. The rest of the team kept their focus during warm ups.

And then the scramble started. Uh oh. There's no back up goalie. Now what? No one knew. Oh sure, there were plenty of jokes flying around the Coliseum. I went up to the press room to see if anything had been announced. Was it just a little tweak? Could Kevin actually play? Were Mike Dunham's pads still in the building? All this and more was floated around the room like helium hitting the ceiling.

Answers were slow in coming as the scene unfolded.

The game began with Mikko Koskinen making his NHL debut. It was only ninety seconds later that he let up his first NHL goal to Colby Armstrong. At 6:31, he let up his second to Jay Rosehill.

About that time the announcement was made that Joel Martin had been recalled from the Bridgeport Sound Tigers on an emergency basis. Trouble was -- HE WAS IN BRIDGEPORT.

Not to worry, the Islanders must have found a Nascar driver to get him to the Coliseum in record time. Joel was on the bench for the start of the third period wearing #34. Shakey Krause must have made the jersey for him while he was enroute.

The injuries didn't stop there. There was a little scary moment when John Tavares went down on the ice and was slow to get up and headed straight to the bench. Then there was Jeremy Colliton, who played only 7:18, he suffered an upper body injury that will require a second look tomorrow.

Matt Moulson scored his 19th goal which makes him the team leading goal scorer, but Michael Grabner is catching up as he scored his 17th goal. Grabner again had a shorthanded breakaway chance, but his hands have to catch up to his feet.

Jack Hillen had one of the best games he's ever played blocking four shots and managing three take-aways.

Rob Schremp scored his tenth goal of the season but still ended the night as a -2.

In all honesty, the way the night started, a 5 - 3 loss was actually better than most of us expected. It's what is yet to come that frightens me.

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