DiPietro is Back!

After sitting out for six humiliating weeks with a facial fracture, Rick DiPietro returned last night to take on the Florida Panthers in Coral Springs. In DP’s last game, he was KO’d by Penguins’ goaltender Brent Johnson. Since then, the Islanders have been playing their best hockey of the year earning a record of 12-5-5. If DiPietro can play well for the rest of the season, the Isles will have two solid goaltenders coming into next year. Al Montoya has been playing like he deserves to be a starter in this league. If I were Jack Capuano, I would have Montoya first on the depth chart come October.

It’s sad to say, but I’m already pumped for next season. I know there’s still eight games to go this year, but let’s face it- there’s no chance the Islanders get the eight seed. Next year, the Islanders will have four (possibly five) players who’ve had over 20 goals this season. Top defenseman Mark Streit will also be back after missing this entire season with a shoulder injury. Plus, John Tavares should have an even bigger breakout season (we will expect at least 40 goals from the 21 year old).

But let’s not get ahead of ourselves now. Let’s hope the Islanders can get the most possible points this season and finish with a respectful record (They would finish with 84 points if they win out). The Isles battle the Lightning on Tuesday night in St. Petersburg.

Stop Getting Hurt

 

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