New York Islanders: My Holiday Guests (part one)

The New York Islanders are spending the Thanksgiving week with me in Los Angeles. I look forward to seeing my old friends this holiday season. But I don’t want to talk hockey.

This New York Islanders team is either is either too devoid of talent, or gumption, or direction, to inspire me.  I remain a fan who will watch each game, even blog. But, yuck. I do not want to talk hockey.

This is one the busiest travel weeks of the year, and for the New York Islanders it is their first busy travel week of the entire season. They’ll be in Anaheim on Tuesday evening to start things off. Aside from the easy “Ducks vs Turkeys” holiday-themed insults, Im not sure what to say about this game.

We have no extended family within 1000 miles of here, so the Islanders are pretty much what we will be doing this week.

Thanksgiving is time for sentimentality. It’s a time to think about family.

Just Like the Old Days

I’ll be driving to see them the way my dad and I got into the car a few zillion times and drove the treacherous stretch of no man’s land between Merrick and Uniondale. Oh, how we did bond for that four-minute ride on the Meadowbrook Parkway.

I won’t head to Friday’s on Merrick Ave or Bennigan’s  in an industrial park for a post-game drink like I did in the 80s.

But there is a Claim Jumper restaurant with a top notch burger buffet just off the 5. If it isn’t crowded with too many Disneyland tourists, it’s a perfect place to stop.

Will the name Claim Jumper make me think about the waiver process? Or the upcoming expansion draft? If so, the more generically named “National Sports Grille” might work out better.

I really do not want to spend my holidays trying to figure out how to find two first line wings for John Tavares. That feels more like a job than a holiday.

If Only…

We have all maxed out on sentences that begin with “If only Snow would…”  or “Why doesn’t Capuano…”  Hopefully this week some sentences will start with “The thing that made me feel better was…”

Before flying up to San Jose to see the Isles play the Sharks later in the week, I’ll take the train to the Kings game on Wednesday.

I’ll be driving to see them the way my dad and I got into the car a few zillion times and drove the treacherous stretch of no man’s land between Merrick and Uniondale. Oh, how we did bond for that four-minute ride on the Meadowbrook Parkway.

It will likely mean little to you that I live along the Expo line on the west side of LA. But to me it means that I don’t have to change at Jamaica or 7th Street Metro Station.

We hate that change thing on either coast. But change is what the Islanders need this Thanksgiving season.

This is a roster that has at least a half dozen cans of cranberry sauce guys playing up front. They need more meat.

This is a roster that puts tryptophan in their Gatorade bottles and is asleep for the last ten minutes of each game.

And you know those little toasted brown marshmallows that sit on top of the sweet potato casserole? Get them off of Tavares’ line!!!!

As far as what I’m hoping to see, aside from a string of victories, I’ve got a few ideas. I’m hoping against hope that in three games I get to see all three Islander goalies start a game. I’m hoping to see some chemistry between any of the talented forwards.  but if i had one wish, it would be for a bench-clearing brawl.

Those games can be the catalyst for a war-brothers bond on a hockey team.  Especially if they happen early on a  road trip, and the guys have that as their main topic of conversation for the following week.

I’ll write again and keep you up to date on how my Thanksgiving week with these dar old fiends turns out.

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