Michael Schuerlein

Episode 20: Are We Right? With Down Goes Brown

Episode 20, we are out of the teens now – it’s the big time!

Episode 19 got The Isles Faithful Podcast past the 5000 downloads range (and it’s still climbing!) so thank you all for the continued support and always great questions! It’s been a wild ride so far and 2019 is shaping up to be even better as we move through January here.

The Islanders split their back to back games over the weekend with a loss to the Rangers on Saturday and a statement win on Sunday over the red-hot Tampa Bay Lightning! The Islanders exploded for three goals in under four minutes, Matt Martin had two primary assists, Casey Cizikas extended his season best goal total in the process, Cal Clutterbuck also chipped in – making the fourth line the “fourst” line? I don’t know what they are – but I do know that @yesmenoutfitter created a new shirt for the Best Fourth Line in Hockey! Check it out! (Use the code FAITHFUL10 at checkout for 10% off thought the rest of this season!).

The power play on Saturday was a complete disaster. The came out of nowhere on Sunday on their only power play and looked professional and clean – scoring their first goal being a man up. It was Brock Nelson coming to the rescue and riding his strong play into the new year. Josh Bailey would cap off the day with an empty net goal, as well.

Joining me this week, is someone I have been a fan of for a long time – he goes by the name Down Goes Brown, but Sean McIndoe is a long time blogger, Twitter chirper (@downgoesbrown) and now full-time writer over at The Athletic. He joined the amazing crew over there during the offseason and has been pumping out great article after great article.

Last week, he put out a piece titled “Are Islanders fans right in thinking their team’s not getting enough credit?” that you should go and read, if you already haven’t. In it, he approaches things in a unique way that presents fans with a line of questions (and explanations) from multiple angles. Overall, it’s a pretty positive piece in a time where coverage outside of the regular writers, is not there. Fans had been giving him a hard time for never including him in his Power Rankings, and this story was a result of some of his research into wether the Islanders are deserving or not.

Sean answers the bell here, he wore his hockey gear and I fired a few shots at him to see if he meant what he said. Turns out, he does – and it’s worth a listen.

Although, he does do the typical Canadian thing – he’s way too nice and apologized for things I don’t really think deserved apologizing over.

He’s a hard guy not to like, that Down Goes Brown guy.

Episode 19: Just One Shot With JPinVA

Hello and welcome Episode 19! This week I am joined by a co-host from Twitter @JPinVA – JP and I have gone back and forth with some spirited Islanders discussions over the last few months and it’s been some good talk. I wanted to have him on for several episodes now and we finally found a time that worked for both of us.

We discuss the winning streak the Islanders ended with a loss last week against Carolina, the struggle they had against St Louis and the Rangers, despite stealing wins in regulation and the play of the kids Ho-Sang, Toews and Dal Colle. We also go into some talk on what to do with Eberle, Lehner, Nelson and some other pending UFA’s and it Lou will do anything with trades down the stretch to the trade deadline. As the title suggests as well, we also reference the one shot/one goal from the game against the Rangers on Thursday and what it will take to play their best tomorrow against Tampa.

We also take some off your Twitter questions, speak in detail about what can help the power play, how Barry Trotz has transformed players like Barzal, Nelson and the defense in general into something we’ve not seen in ages. I also hint at an upcoming guest, and congratulate the Isles Meetup guys for the creation of their own website NYIMeetups.com – head on over there to check it out!

We will be back with Episode 20 either Monday or Tuesday! Stay tuned!

Episode 18: Barzal And Isles Going Streaking!

Happy New Year Isles Faithful! I hope that everyone had a fantastic holiday break!

I know that I was extremely busy, I’ve been off since the Friday before Christmas, we did a lot of visiting and being visited by family. I also ate a ton of great food, maybe a little TOO much. I am certainly paying for that in the waist department -but back on that diet saddle we go.

For the first episode of 2019, I talk about the Islanders 8-1 stretch of games and discuss their five game winning streak. We catch up on how the kids are doing (Ho Sang, Dal Cole and Toews), the goaltending being off the charts (Lehner is 2.13 GAA and .929 SV%) and also the special teams starting to come around. Is there something or someone I am forgetting about? Oh yea, “The Kid Who Scores Hatty’s” – Mat Barzal.

Barzal is on a bit of a tear currently, with 8 goals 4 assists for 12 points in 9 games. During that span that, he is also a +5 and has amassed 34 shots, including 8 last night, 5 against Toronto and 7 back on 12/15 against Detroit, He’s really taken Barry Trotz’s criticism and critiquing to heart it seems. Am I still forgetting something? Oh that’s right – his natural hat trick against Tavares and the Maple Leafs. It was a sight to be seen, that 4-0 shutout masterpiece.

Devon Toews has looked like an absolute bright spot on the back end, including his overtime heroics last night against the Chicago Blackhawks! He picked a heck of a time to score his first NHL goal, it’s going to be one he’s not going to forget anytime soon. The Isles are 5-0 with him (and Baby Stape, Congrats Art!) in the lineup, the Isles are also 8-1 with Josh Ho Sang in the lineup as well – two young guys who have really done great things for the make up of this squad.

Also in this episode we take some of your Twitter questions again, discussing what – if anything Lou Lamoriello will do down the stretch with trades and contract offerings to his pending unrestricted and restricted free agents. Off topic, I also discuss my recent purchase of Bauer Supreme 2s ice hockey skates as I have been shopping around since my MLX skates broke last month, special thanks go out to Bauer here for steering me in the right direction!

I’d also keep an eye out for an EXCITING announcement on another Yes Men Outfittersf contest! We’re kicking of 2019 in style and you’ll have your choice of any hat or t-shirt on his site. In the meantime please continue to use the discount code FAITHFUL10 on your orders over there for 10% off! Be sure to follow Devin on Twitter as well @yesmenoutfitter

Thanks for listening and we will see you in Episode 19!

Episode 17: With Barzal, Ho-Sang and Toews, The Future Is Now!

This is it! This is the moment many of us have been waiting for!

Young stars, stud players if you will, are going to be flush in the New York Islanders lineup. Mat Barzal, the former rookie of the year has been a staple over and a breath of fresh air over the last year and a half has recently been joined by fellow puck possession wizard in Josh Ho-Sang. But wait, there’s more – Devon Toews has been recalled to replace the injured Thomas Hickey. Yes, you’re reading that right. We talk about all this and more, in Episode 17 – so read on.

My example of a GREAT power play

Ive said pretty extensively on Twitter over the last few weeks, that I feel both Barzal and Ho-Sang are “drivers” in that they dictate pace of play with puck possession and zone entries. We know what we have in Barzal, and he’s come around in Trotz’s system as of late. With Ho-Sang, he’s struggled to elevate his play in a way to earn the trust of the new management – but he earned his chance now and he’s running with it. Trotz recently changed his tune from “no pressure to insert in lineup” to “I see no reason to take him out of the lineup” and that’s fantastic news. Ho-Sang was rewarded with a goal this week in Arizona for his efforts and if you look at his fancy stats – the numbers say he’s doing a great job. The second power play unit has also benefitted from his style of play – you have two guys (at even strength as well) that draw players to them and it opens up room for everyone else, plus they can both thread the needle like nobody else on the team, outside maybe Eberle.

With Thomas Hickey out with a suspected concussion (which is a shame, I love what Hickey brings and I hope he’s not injured too bad) – Devon Toews has been recalled. I joked in this episode that it’s a Christmas Miracle! Fans and experts alike have been waiting for this defenseman to draw into the lineup for quite some time – and you have this Tweet from Newsday’s Andrew Gross as a meter for how we ALL FEEL!

A bold statement, right?

I also go into some more ranting about the mostly stationary, but improving power play, which involves mostly the adding of Ho-Sang and I took a few Twitter questions from the most faithful Isles Faithful listeners!

Holiday season reminders! Kings Coast Coffee – it’s amazing! Go buy some and use the code ISLES for 10% off your entire order. I just ordered $70 worth of coffee and mugs as a gift for my wife – good thing she doesn’t read this space.

That’s not the only DISCOUNT CODE we have for you either, head on over to my buddy Devin’s (@YesMenOutfitter) site Yes Men Outfitters for some sweet Isles swag and use the code FAITHFUL10 for 10% off your order as well. He’s got a lot of great new designs he’s pumping out – be sure to fill someone stocking, or even your own just like me!

I finally met Devin last weekend at the Coliseum, such a solid dude and he’s doing really great things with his trips and tailgates – I don’t know how he finds the time to do everything he does! I am off for Christmas and New Years (11 days total) so I am planning on recording a few times and maybe a recap of the best episodes so far, but if we don’t speak before then have a very safe and Merry Christmas/Happy Holiday!

Episode 16: Talking Power Outage And More with Arthur Staple

I have been going on, and on, and on – for what seems like weeks now about this power-less power play of the New York Islanders. It didn’t seem like long ago that we had a fantastic power play, but horrendous everything else….but such is life around here in Islanders country, right?

We have top notch coaching now, we have top notch management and ownership. We’re about to have a state-of-the-art arena, which feels really strange to type – but it’s true. Why can’t we have a well playing team under these new and awesome coaches, that INCLUDES a proper power play? Arthur Staple of The Athletic joins me on The Isles Faithful Podcast this week to find out, or at least discuss some of the possible reasons why the power is out.

We also go into some defensive talk, praising Nick Leddy and Johnny Boychuk, we speak about the offensive powerhouse of Scott Mayfield under Barry Trotz and the solid play of Thomas Hickey as well. We touch on some of the offensive strengths and weaknesses, discuss what moves Lou Lamoriello can make or not make to bolster the teams needs and go into some possible moves that’ll finally see Josh Ho-Sang called up from the AHL Bridgeport Sound Tigers.

We literally touched on a ton of great topics that’ll be sure to wet your whistle in a variety of areas.

Have a listen and let us know what you think!

Be sure to follow Arthur on Twitter if you’re not already doing so – he’s one of the best in Isles Twitter for sure. Head on over to The Athletic as well as they’re running some great deals for you to subscrive and enjoy a bunch of great writers covering every sport there is – including all of the major area sports teams!

Episode 15: Talking With Nick Hirshon, Author of We Want Fish Sticks

We are back with another episode, Episode 15 – and this time we sat down for a chat with the Author of the soon-to-be-released book “We Want Fishsticks”, Nick Hirshon.

Before I get into the book talk, I offer a rundown of all the games over the Thanksgiving break and some hard hitting analysis as always. I got pretty amped up this week, as the Islanders powerplay is fair to middling – to say the least.

Nick isn’t just an author, he’s a college professor who wrote his college thesis on – the Islanders, but he’s also obviously a huge New York Islanders fan. I reached out to Nick after seeing some promo work on his book via Twitter and we got to talking. Obviously, I invited him here and thankfully he obliged.

Like all my guests, we talked about current and past Islanders related topics, the vintage Fisherman jersey we have all come to know and love (well, some of us anyway) and even about arenas and ownership. It was a conversation I thoroughly enjoyed and as it turned out, I learned quite a bit about a few things. Did you know that the fisherman on the crest is modeled after one of the Baymen out here in East Hampton? I didn’t know that. In fact, Nick and I talked about all that after recording, in an unfortunate twist of fate – because I am related to one of the oldest fishing families on the east end.

Nick did a lot of the research for his book, and the fishermen – right here in my local library. He will be out here again in January for a book signing and we have plans to meet up in person. I’m looking forward to it.

Another quick coincidence – the Islanders, today actually, posted that the fisherman jersey is available for purchase and customization RIGHT NOW via their online store. It’s something I will be jumping on as well.

Nick’s book “We Want Fish Sticks – The Bizarre And Infamous Rebranding of The New York Islanders” is available tomorrow, December 1st everywhere books are sold – Amazon, Barnes and Noble. Be sure to follow him on Twitter @NickHirshon for all the latest! Here’s a list of signings as well, if you want to meet the author and get a book signed:

Book Talk & Signing — Saturday, December 8, at 3 p.m.
Queens Library, 256-04 Union Turnpike, Glen Oaks, Queens
Details: https://bit.ly/2K7o1le

Book Signing — Saturday, December 29, at 6:30 p.m.*
Offside Tavern, 137 W. 14th Street between 6th and 7th Avenues, Manhattan
*Signing will continue throughout televised coverage of the Islanders’ away game against John Tavares and the Toronto Maple Leafs

Book Signing — Thursday, January 10, at 4 p.m.*
Gerry Cosby & Co., 11 Pennsylvania Plaza (7th Avenue) between 31st and 32nd Streets, Manhattan
*Signing will precede the Islanders-Rangers game at nearby Madison Square Garden, just one block away.

Book Talk & Signing — Saturday, January 26, at 1 p.m.
East Hampton Library, 159 Main Street, East Hampton, Long Island
Details: https://bit.ly/2DmbyJb

Also, I spoke about my experience with the coffee sent over by Wayne from Kings Coast Coffee – it’s amazing! Go buy some and use the code ISLES for 10% off your entire order. Great for the Holiday season!

That’s not the only DISCOUNT CODE we have for you either, head on over to my buddy Devin’s (@YesMenOutfitter) site Yes Men Outfitters for some sweet Isles swag and use the code FAITHFUL10 for 10% off your order as well. He’s got a lot of great new designs he’s pumping out – be sure to fill someone stocking, or even your own just like me!

Episode 14: Isles Talk With Wayne From Kings Coast Coffee

Hello there Isles Faithful! We are back with another episode where we talk puck, coffee (a podcast staple) and a slew of other topics.

Episode 14 features Wayne Cafariella of Kings Coast Coffee, a local small batch coffee roaster who tells me his caffeinated goodness is enjoyed by Islanders players and broadcasters alike. Earlier this week I noticed that Brendan Burke posted up a picture of Kings Coast and I joked that I was insanely jealous and pondering my life coffee choices.

Freshly Roasted!

Wayne reached out to me and asked me if I wanted a sample (still waiting for delivery) but I took him up on the offer. We started talking and I found out that he’s a rabid Islanders fan – like the rest of us, he also knows a lot of the people I know in the craft beer industry and plays on a rival brewery beer league team. Such a small world, which is why I invited him on the show.

Besides being schooled on how to make the perfect roast, we talked about all of the Islanders moves to date (Lou, Trotz, Signings), how he became a fan, how he got into coffee and everything about his business. It was another one of those conversations where I felt like we could’ve talked for hours on end.

Out what would turn into a wave of irony, we discussed Anthony Beauvillier’s struggles, as well as Leddy and Boychuk’s. We would also talk about how GREAT Brock Nelson and Anders Lee would be playing, Barzal’s development and take Twitter questions on what we feel about potential trades and who we think should be called up from Bridgeport to replace the injured Ladd, Cizikas and Martin. Turns out, we speculated in Michael Dal Cole – we were right. We mentioned how Beau would break out – he did, for a hat trick last night against the Rangers. We plan on recording again, for the simple fact that things just worked out too perfect in what we discussed.

With that, please give Wayne a follow on Twitter, he can be found @chefwayneface and the coffee company can be found @kings_coast. I also ask you to check out their website: https://www.kingscoastcoffee.com as well as their Facebook and Instagram accounts as well. The brand is super cool, and I suspect the product is just as delicious. I cannot wait for it to arrive.

Wayne was also SUPER GENEROUS to our readers and listeners that if you use the
Promo Code ISLES you’ll receive 15% off your ENTIRE ORDER! I don’t know about you, but with the Holiday’s right around the corner, how is that not the perfect gift idea?!

Wayne was so knowledgeable about hockey, coffee and local business that I hope he becomes a regular on the show. Let us know what you think in the comments!

Episode 13: Throwing Shade on Nick Leddy

It’s been a bit since we’ve last spoken and a lot has transpired in that time. The Islanders would go on a five game win streak and catapult to the top of the Metro Division, but would eventually lose in a shootout to the Montreal Canadiens and last night in regulation to the Lightning. They have a respectable record of 6-2-2 over the last ten games and 8-5-2 so far this season, still in first place in the Metro division.

That’s not to say it’s been all roses during that time either, because there have been warts.

Those warts have names, too – and the biggest one is Nick Leddy. I really dislike throwing shade or too much negativity on one player, but in this case it’s pretty warranted. The defense has been pretty mediocre in terms of the Islanders – Boychuk, Leddy, Hickey, Pulock, Pelech – and by association Sbisa.

The standout, though – again, is Leddy. He’s become a turnover machine, hasn’t contributed much offensively and yet still remains on the Islanders top power play unit. You have to scratch your head there.

In this episode we go over all of the stats from our elite wingers in Josh Bailey and Anders Lee. We praise Brock Nelson (YES WE DO!) and talk about Barzal’s struggles. We go in depth about the Defense and even include a clip from an appearance on The Secondary Assist podcast with Shane Blackburn and Andy Graziano as well.

We also talk about some of @reagankingisles latest fancy stat work this episode as well, always an interesting topic.

Hope you enjoy it, let us know what you think.

Episode 12: Remembering Charles Wang

It’s been a tough week in Isles country, there’s not many ways to sugarcoat it.

It started last weekend with a tough loss to San Jose, the last of the West Coast trip. That game was a tough, physical grind that saw the real Sharks team that many thought they would be when the Islanders shut them out a week prior. It had everything, physicality, drama, fighting, ejections – the whole nine.

By the time the Islanders woke up on Sunday, they – along with everyone else learned that former Islanders owner Charles B. Wang had passed away after a battle with lung cancer, he was 74.

Somber notes from teams, officials and current and former players around the league began to trickle in, moments of silence would be had by all local teams – it was pretty special to see then impact this man had outside of the Islanders organization. By the time the Isles hosted the Panthers on Wednesday in Brooklyn, they had announced they would honor the former owners memory the rest of the season with a CBW patch on their jersey. MSG had a brilliant video montage on the Islanders telecast, the Islanders held a moment of silence prior to the game and coincidentally, I had a ticket to this game – so I got to see it first hand.

In Episode 12, we share stories of our run-ins with Charles Wang – a man that really loved his New York Islanders, fans and Long Island in general. We hear from fans on Twitter, on Reddit and from an old friend in Dee Karl (@7thwoman). It was great hearing all these stories that prove someone who’s affluent, could be an everyday Joe who wasn’t just defined by his bank account.

We offer our sincerest apologies to all of his wife, children, his extended family and friends during this difficult time. I was lucky enough to know Charles a little, and he was a true gentleman and a great owner – he will be missed.

We also talk about the two recent losses the Isles have suffered, what to expect this weekend and take a few Twitter questions regarding the roster.

See you in Episode 13.

Episode 11: We Talk Isles With Fans on Discord

Episode 11 is upon us! I decided to switch things up this week with something I have hinted at the last few weeks – The Discord Channel!

Special thanks go out to Isles Reddit user Nick, for all the help setting up permissions last night!

The Discord channel allows users to essentially listen in to the podcast LIVE and even PARTICIPATE if they would like, much the same way callers would to a live radio show. There is also a chat room where you can share links, tweets and even photos and video if you’d like. It was a lot of fun, honestly – and now that I know what I am doing id love to do it more often too.

In this episode, we host a few Islanders fans and go over some of the singings (Gionta, Sbisa) and the Jan Kovar experiment coming to a really strange ending. We also talk about the last few games, what was the upcoming game in Los Angeles last night and what we can expect in the future from the team. We get a history on some of our fans as well – like I said, was a really cool experience and something I have wanted to do for a while. I admit, it’s a work in progress though and I will likely change things up as we move forward with it.

So to Saintsisles, Puckfeller and Nick from Reddit – thanks for coming on and talking Isles hockey!

Want to check out the Discord channel for yourself? Click here!