I hate afternoon games. Always have, always will. It's not because the team it still waking up, playing with that glazed over look in their eyes. It's because
have that glazed over just woken up feeling. I spent most of the first and second period yawning and wondering where I was -- and where are those Islanders that just came off of a 6 game unbeaten streak! I think we got our treat in the form of our winning streak, before the trick came and took our Islanders away. I'm hoping for their return on Tuesday evening.
The Islanders came out, and played their best period, the first. Kvasha scored, but after the first Kings goal, the game moved into a slow motion, sleepy outing. At points it seemed just hang there because of constant stoppages in play. There were a couple of shining moments, but not enough consistency to get anything going. We had a couple solid scoring chances -- pucks sitting in the crease, just waiting to be tipped in before getting snatched up by Storr, a couple of breakaways with decent chances, and some good passing attempts that should have lead to Islander goals. But it seemed like most of the time our scorers were just standing there, clutching the sticks, waiting for things to happen. Even with the slow play, all of the responsibility was not on us. It seemed that the referees too, were sleeping on the job.
Two misguided calls cost us this game. Ironically, they were opposites of each other. First, a goal was scored on Flaherty that should not have been allowed. Flaherty was trampled over, and pushed out of the net. Goalie interference should have been called, and the play whistled before the goal was scored. Second, in the opposite end, a goal was disallowed from the Islanders. The referees blew the whistle too quickly, while the puck was still loose, and the Islanders scored. If the puck was loose enough to be shot into the net, then the whistle should not have been blown. This being the case, if the goal wasnt taken away, and the Kings werent given the freebee, we would have been in the game.
A welcome and a homecoming
Before the preskate we saw the trainer walk the sticks to the bench. Looked down, and there it was. Goalie stick labeled DiPietro. Word spread quickly thru the stands, and he walked out onto the ice to big cheers. He was pretty quiet during the warm up. He was quickly brought back down to earth after the blazing cheers, as he approached the goalie net, he fell head first onto the ice. Most of the rest of the time, he stood in the corner, practicing stickhandling, and throwing practice pucks over the boards to the kids in the stands. Winning over his peers, I guess. Congratulations Rick, welcome to the major leauges, even though you sat down the whole time. Who knows, maybe he'll see some action next time, if Beezer isnt a Daddy yet...
As you walked thru the coliseum, you saw the jerseys everywhere. Everyone took them out of the closet and dusted them off, for Ziggy's homecoming parade. It was the first time he came back to the coliseum since he was traded to the Kings. They played a montage on the scoreboard of his best moves, and thanking him for his time that he spent here. Thanks, Ziggy for the memories.