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Saturday, November 29, 2008

Let's be real: Nobody likes the Islanders

Thanksgiving night, my buddy Jim texted me with an offer to go to the Bruins-Islanders game yesterday afternoon (the annual day after thanksgiving noon start) and of course I said yes even though I'm going tonight too.

The Bruins (15-4-4) came out slow against the Islanders (9-12-2), down 1-0 after the first period but they blew New York out in the third period with a five-goal barrage, en route to a 7-2 domination.

With the games on back-to-back nights, Manny Fernandez got the start against the Islanders and true to form, he gave up a soft goal 1:46 into the game. Nate Thompson skated down the wall and wristed a shot past Fernandez's glove-side.

Chuck Kobasew tied it up 3:28 into the second on a power-play goal (his fourth of the year) from Marc Savard and P.J. Axelsson. Islanders goalie Joey MacDonald stopped the inital shot but Kobasew stuck with it and jammed it over the line.

A bad turnover in their own end by New York led to Michael Ryder's goal 15:16 into the the second. Ryder intercepted the puck and quickly loaded his stick before wristing it past MacDonald (his fourth of the season).

The third period was absurd, definitely one of the craziest 20 minutes I've ever seen for the Bruins as they scored five goals and got into two fights.

At 6:48, Blake Wheeler (6th of the year) scored from David Krejci and Mark Stuart. After winning the ensuing face-off, Krejci scored (his 6th of the season) from Wheeler and Zdeno Chara, just 10 seconds later.

MacDonald got the hook in favor of rookie Peter Mannnino, who was making his NHL debut.

Dennis Wideman tallied a power-play goal (6th of the season) from Matt Hunwick and Phil Kessel. Right after the goal, Milan Lucic and Islanders goon Brendan Witt fought in front of New York's goal.

22 seconds after that, Shane Hnidy and Tim Jackman also fought. Both fights were pretty even but it should be noted that the Bruins guys scored the takedowns.

Richard Park's power-play goal (from Andy Hilbert and Mark Streit) cut the Bruins lead to 5-2.

No matter though as Ryder got a power-play goal (from Wideman and Hunwick) and Kessel scored on a sick deflection of a Lucic pass across the middle (Savard started the play).

Things should be much more difficult tonight as the Detroit Red Wings, the defending Stanley Cup Champions, come to the Garden for an early-season showdown. It's the teams' only meeting of the season and it should be a good one, dare I say a Stanley Cup preview?

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