TIF Podcast

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 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 7: Talking Belmont and The Coliseum With Jim Baumbach

Welcome back to another episode of The Isles Faithful Podcast!

In this episode, our 7th episode already – we talk to Jim Baumbach of New York’s Newsday as he has been covering the New York Islanders arena stories since the very beginning. Jim and I actually go way back to 2007, back to my time when I covered the Islanders on a regular basis over on my blog www.islesblogger.com.

Jim goes into detail on the NEW arena set to be built in Belmont, right on the border of New York City and Long Island’s Nassau County. The difference this time is that there is state land involved. The similarities involve heaps of opposition to the project, plus the literal red tape that comes with mega projects.

We also go into Transportation, other projects around the New York Area and some of the nuances involved with the Islanders playing parts of the next three seasons at their OLD home in Uniondale at Nassau Coliseum.

This type of talk isn’t for everyone, but it’s an important on-going story that seems never-ending for the New York Islanders and Islanders fans.

Please give Jim Baumbach a follow on Twitter, if you’re not already. You can also find his articles on Newsday’s website.

Thanks as always and we’ll see you in Episode 8!

Episode 6: Talking Robin Lehner with Joe Yerdon of The Athletic

This week, we were blown away with a bombshell by new Islanders goaltender Robin Lehner. Turns out, the last few years he has been suffering through an addiction, and mental illness. This all came out yesterday, in a story he wrote himself for The Athletic.

It’s worth a read, and – there’s no paywall for the article. It’s so important that they have chosen to make it free for everyone.

Mental illness is no joke, neither is addiction. Lehner does a fantastic job of speaking of all these things in this letter and I truly believe this revelation and the treatments he’s been through will make him a better person, father, husband and athlete. Which is why I asked my good friend and Buffalo Sabres writer for The Athletic, Joe Yerdon (@joeyerdon) to join me this week.

Lehner previously played for the Sabres and was known for his outbursts, his fiery personality and for his at times, stellar play. Joe goes into detail about the type of guy Robin is and what Isles fans should expect out of him as a goaltender and a person. He also speaks about his history of dealing with Robin during his time with the Sabres.

I also take your Twitter questions again them this week, and I have a small announcement as well – I have created a Discord Channel. This will be used to dedicate an entire episode, maybe once a month to YOU GUYS, Islanders Fans. The channel name is The Isles Faithful, it’s not quite live yet so keep an eye out on Twitter and Facebook for news on this.

Discord is like a chatroom, it’s also like a party line Skype. I can pick on people to speak and we’ll record the show like that if theres enough interest. It’s shaping up to be a lot of fun, at least that’s the hope anyway!

Enjoy Episode 6 and we’ll speak to you next week in Episode 7.

Episode 5: Going Beyond With Steve Wood and Isles Meetup Tampa TIF0005

September is HERE!

That means that NHL camps are just about to start, the weather is beginning to turn around and Pumpkin Spice is about to be everywhere and in every product.

With hockey just about back, we are going to be cranking up our coverage and it starts with Episode 5!

This week, we sat down with Former AHL Defenseman Steve Wood, whom I have known for 5 years now. Steve played in the Flyers organization and eventually wound up in Bridgeport for 12 games playing for Jack Capuano. You think that I would know Steve through my time covering hockey, but no – we met in Florida which you’ll hear about in the interview.

Steve tells us what life is like as a professional athlete, what it’s like to come up through the high school and prep school ranks and eventually the collegiate level as well. He references a letter he wrote when he was 7 years old and what it’s like to follow your dreams. We then talk about his latest venture, a program called Go Beyond the Ice. It’s probably the most in depth interview to date and is chock full of stories.

We also continue to look at all the Isles Meetup groups on the heels of Episode 4 when we sat down with Isles Meetup Charlotte, this time we sit with Kevin Carney of Isles Meetup Tampa (@islesmeetup_tpa).

Kevin is just starting out his group down in Tampa but goes into his former life on Long Island (New Jersey, and Charlotte) and how he came to know Mike from Islesmeetup_CLT, his Islanders fandom and what his plans are for the group. Be sure to check that out as well.

As always, we take your twitter questions again as well!

Thanks as always and we’ll see you in Episode 6!

The Fancy Podcast: Josh Ho-Sang Needs a Yes Men Oufitters Shirt TIF0003

In this week’s episode (episode number three!) we talk to Reagan King of www.corsisles.com and also Devin from Yes Men Outfitters.

Reagan (@ReaganKingIsles) tells us everything we need to know about fancy stats, we go into details on how stats are recorded, what they mean and some of the history behind the numbers. We also go into detail about what these different stat lines mean for individual players and how that could potentially land which players on what lines or how they could compliment each other. We do the same for the defense and go into some of the new stats recorded for goaltenders as well – something we both feel that Trotz, Korn and Greco will sort out as the season progresses.

Devin (@YesMenOutfitter) and I talk about his company – Yes Men Outfitters, how he started the company and what his plans are for it, how he came up with the name and what some of his products are like. We talk about the crazy demand of the Say My Name and Kid Who Won The Calder shirts. We also spoke about his plans to go down to Carolina to meet up with the group IslesMeetup_CLT for the Canes home opener against the Islanders. He’s even bringing some of his attire, and a special shirt as a giveaway for the trip! Tickets are going fast if you’re interested!

We also take your Twitter questions again, something that’s been a great time to date – it’s been a fun episode, let us know what you think in the comments, on Facebook and on Twitter!

 

 

The Culture Club: Not Your Father’s Islanders TIF0002

The Culture Club

No – not the Boy George led band of the 1980’s and not even the awesome Club in Downtown Manhattan that bares the same name. We are talking about the culture club WITHIN the New York Islanders.

Let’s take it back a few months here.

Clean out Day, April 9th 2018 – An unshaven and honestly disheveled looking Garth Snow feebly addresses the media, Doug Weight, with a sour look on his face attempts to do the same. Jon Ledecky reads, angrily – from a pre-written letter claiming that ownership and the team has let fans down. This is months following a billboard that was erected in Brooklyn, begging for the GM to be fired.

It was just awkward, and honestly pretty confusing. It turns out, both Snow and Weight were lame ducks at that table that day in April.

Things would eventually progress pretty rapidly afterwards  – Lou Lamoriello wouldn’t be extended in Toronto. He winds up on Long Island, is named President of Hockey Operations and is given full autonomy by ownership.

Stop the presses! Autonomy! What’s that? Well, we would come to find out for sure.

Lou started doing Lou type things. Leaks, they stopped. The culture, well he took it straight on and in one swoop – out with the old. It’s what he does, right? Garth Snow and Doug Weight were removed as General Manager and Head Coach in the same afternoon on June 9th. Just like that, he ripped the bandaid off when nobody was even looking.

As we move forward, Lou stated he was going to hire “the best coach available” and all signs were pointing to coaches without jobs – nobody expected a coach playing for and ultimately winning the Stanley Cup to reach a contract impasse with his team, the Washington Capitals, right? No, I didn’t – you didn’t, but Lou probably knew something and Barry Trotz was signed to a contract with the Islanders on June 21st.

Just like that – the culture tide was changing.

Lou would then go and add Steve Pellegrini, formerly of the New Jersey Devils as Assistant GM.

Fire assistants Greg Cronin, Kelly Buchberger, and Luke Richardson – all Weight’s guys. Curiously he would leave the Bridgeport staff as untouched….

Hire long time Trotz Assistant Lane Lambert as well as John Gruden (who’s story is extremely interesting and worth a read, too).

And then, they would let go of Goaltending coach – Fred Brathwaite in order to hire former Toronto Marlies tendy coach – Piero Greco, and following that up with the goalie whisperer in Mitch Korn as Director of Goaltending. Keep in mind both of these goalie guys are fresh off winning their leagues respective championships.

So, to summarize – Every losing coach was canned and they brought in proven winners. Even Gruden has won at the levels he’s coached. We have Trotz and Lambert that will install their own systems and evaluate talent. We have Greco who will work with Robin Lehner and Thomas Greiss and without a doubt work better numbers into their play. Gruden will work magic with the kids, or at least I assume that’s the hope.

In these sweeping changes, Lou Lamoriello has installed a system of accountability, proffessionalism and respect that the Islanders as an organization have not seen in a really long time. What they can do with the roster they have obviously remains to be seen, but the things coming out of the players mouths at this point have been really positive.

It makes for exciting offseason talk, at the very least.

I also took some Twitter questions for the podcast – just to try to involve some of you fine folks in the discussions. Let’s take a look!

 

 

Hope you all enjoyed Episode Two!

 

 

Podcast Intro: Give a Listen

Hello Isles fans!

Been playing around with Garage Band and wanted to give a sneak peak at what the intro for the podcast sounds like so far. I posted recently that I paid a voice actor to lend voice to the intro to keep things professional sounding – I think it sounds good at this point. I have a few more ideas, but this is a starting point and obviously things could continue to evolve as we move along. I did submit a request to change my name pronunciation – as it was my fault I didn’t choose wisely phonetically….

I do have an awesome Isles chant/YES YES YES that @gwenisles sent me yesterday, but I’m not sure if it needs it or not. You be the judge, I have listened to about 20 different Podcast intros over the last week.

Give a listen below, let me know what you think!

 

I will most likely be recording episode one tonight, keep an eye out on Twitter, Instagram an our Facebook Page!