Let me start off by saying that John Tavares is going to be a great fit for the Islanders.
Seriously, this is one of the worst teams I’ve seen play in a long time. I know DiPietro wasn’t playing, but that was a disgusting defensive performance, and the players they brought in to replace their departing free agents “scorers” won’t cut it. I’d feel bad for Mike Comrie, but he’s a huge, flaming douchebag, so screw that guy.
The Sabres went into Nassau on a sleepy Monday afternoon and destroyed a bad hockey team. It is the classic sign of a team getting it together. When you play bad teams, you should beat bad teams. Badly. How many laughable blowouts do you recall from two seasons ago? The Islanders put forth a poor effort in all facets, and the Sabres made them pay.
But here’s what has me much more excited about this team.
I’m posting that feed for a reason. Listen to what the announcer thinks about what Rivet does and how Kaleta acts. Sometimes as a fan you forget a few things. The first thing you forget is that unless it is a national broadcast the announcing crew is horribly, horribly biased. Yes, even Rick and Harry.
The second thing you forget is that there is always another side of the story, and Islanders fans are going to see a completely different story unfold when that puck drops. A team trying to get a spark, a battle between two centers that escalates. what is Rivet doing going after them? Why is Mair making that face?
To a Sabres fan, however, it all makes sense. I don’t care if Mair could handle his man or not, and I don’t care if Bergenheim isn’t a fighter; Rivet went in there and did exactly what I wanted him to do. He wasn’t going to take his team getting jumped, and he made someone pay the price for it.
The signature moment of last year’s Sabres team came on the Road Trip from Hell. They finally were scoring against the Sharks, blowing them out. Joe Thornton blows a fuse and goes after
Brian Campbell Jaro Spacek, and everyone stood around waiting for the officials to peel Joe off our superstar defenseman. That lack of action was the hallmark of the season. Sit and wait, wait for someone to take charge.
Rivet came to this team and has absolutely taken charge. When a defenseman takes a double game misconduct to get a message across it is a big deal. When that defenseman is wearing the “C” his teammates gave him, it’s a huge deal. Chris and I have had a lot of nice things to say about Craig Rivet, but I think I’m ready to say the nicest:
I love our captain, and it’s been far too long since I’ve said that.