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"Off The Post: Inching Closer to the Future"
Long Island, NY • United States • 25 Years Old • Male
Islanders vs. Rangers

Many fans on both sides have been waiting for this re-match. I remember 2 years ago when they decided to have each team play their division rivals 8 times a piece, how excited I was knowing that meant 8 Islander-Ranger games a year. I just can't get enough of these games.

Regardless of playoff positions these games seem to fire up both teams, the fans, and anyone involved. Whether you're hoping the Islanders continue to drop in the standings to possibly draft Stamkos or not, I don't know one Islander fan that wants to see their team lose the to the Rags. These games seem to always bring the best out of both teams, the Islanders especially (but the hangover usually kills us for about 3 games after).

Unfortunately the Islanders don't have too many enforcers in the line-up. We do have Davison, who will get his first taste of the rivalry..Witt, who always is a nice match-up to the always-kind and welcomed Sean Avery, Comrie - who fights more than anyone on this team, and Hunter - who hits everything that moves. The Rangers of course will have Avery, Hollweg, and Orr, who seem to love these contests as well. Dubie will be in bet tonight as DP is said to be returning to practice tomorrow. The best part about tonight's game is that it is a home-and-home series..so whatever isn't finished tonight will have a chance to be taken up on Thursday.

Don't get me wrong, I don't just love these series for their history of brawls, fights, and chicken-dance escapades..they are without question playoff-type games that are the most exciting to watch all year, until the playoffs of course. The fighting has slowed down a bit with the subtraction of guys like Cairns, Godard, and so on. But we can always hope that something will happen to set things off - and no, I'm not talking about a Chris Simon type event, but hopefully a big hit, or a lop-sided Islanders score that gets things heated.

Many fans around the NHL aren't aware of how intense these games can get. I remember watching TSN after Hamrlik signed with Calgary after the lock-out. The analyst mentioned how Hamrlik will be jumping into the "Battle of Alberta," after experiencing Islander-Ranger game, where we had "a little rivalry of our own." I was so mad when I heard refer to these games as just "a little rivalry." I am in no way downplaying the rivalry between Edmonton and Calgary, but there is no way in hell that you can call the Islander-Ranger rivalry little. I've even heard die-hard Yankee fans tell me that the Islander-Ranger rivalry is more exciting and thrilling than the Yankee-Boston or Yankee-Met rivalry. It's true. Where else will you see vicious body-checks, fisticuffs, or fans that hate each other more and more each game?

I mean the chants amongst the crowd are classic!

MAKE THE PLAYOFFS!
YOU CAN'T BEAT US!
(chicken song) THE RANGERS SUCK!
POTVIN SUCKS!
1940!..and the list goes on.

Back and forth...the atmospher of the Coliseum or the Garden is always electrifying, and I wish I could be at one of these games, but unfortunately with work I can't - but I will get to watch it without any interruptions..(maybe that's why I felt going on a tear here, since I missed the last one and only got to hear the radio's coverage)

The Islanders face a Rangers squad that seems to be finally finding their identity, moving up in the standings every game. The Islanders, however, have dropped two games in a row and are five points out with the Rangers, Sabres, and Flyers holding a game in hand on us. Tonight's game is huge, and just may be what the doctor ordered since the Islanders need to do some soul-searching and see if they have the heart to really make a push for the playoffs.

53 shots and no goals against the Panthers was embarassing. They had quality scoring chances and gave an honest, desperate effort, but were unable to put a W in the win column. Says alot about our offence, doesn't it?

Hopefully the goals that should've been Sunday will find their way into the back of the net tonight.

And for Islander and Ranger fans viewing pleasure, a little video I found on YouTube

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J8COzLUuSHU

(Sorry, everytime I preview the video it shows in my blog, but when I hit submit it doesn't, hope you all still enjoy!)
Filed Under:   Islanders   Rangers   NHL   Rivalry   Panthers  
March 4, 2008 3:57 PM ET | Delete
Great Article! I love MSG but watching games at the old Mozz is something else. It feels like the roof is gonna come of during those games. ESPN for years ran their BS poll asking what the biggest rivalry in the NHL was. AVS and Wings always won. F them! They loved the west and never once took a look over the Throggsneck bridge to the best rivalry in the NHL. I wonder is mounted horse police stand outside of Joe Lewis arena. They sure as hell will be standing outside in Nassau on Thursday night. Potvin can beat his wife,and we can never get enough of them Fishsticks. Nothing Beats Rangers /Islanders. PS DEVILS SUCK
March 4, 2008 4:10 PM ET | Delete
Awesome blog, nothing in the NHL compares to this rivalry. I long for the day when these two teams are competing for the division and in the playoffs. If the NHL ever needed a series to put interest back into the NHL, it would be an Isles-Rangers Conf. Finals!
March 4, 2008 4:56 PM ET | Delete
Bahaha ummm montreal Vs Toronto, Ottawa Buffalo, Wings and AVS!!!!!!
March 4, 2008 9:55 PM ET | Delete
no offence, buts its Red Sox Yankees. not even close.
March 4, 2008 10:03 PM ET | Delete
Come on - Ohio St/Michigan, Sox/Spankees, USC/UCLA and Flyers/Rangers was always pretty good too.
March 5, 2008 3:25 AM ET | Delete
Nice read.
March 5, 2008 9:53 AM ET | Delete
Montreal/Toronto??? are you kidding?? Sens/Sabres hugggggggh??? WINGS /AVS their we go ESPN all over again. Your talking about two teams that are 40 mins away and less then 27 miles apart. LEAFS/SENS are at least 5 hours away. Yanks/Sox is great but the Garden was crazy last night. DAMN YOU DUBIE!
March 5, 2008 10:33 AM ET | Delete
CAPMESS11, are you actually saying that rivalries can only be good if the teams buildings are close together? Isn't MSG closer to the New Jersey Devils arena, than it is to the Islanders?Leafs vs MTL is the greatest rivalry because it has been around for 100 years. A lot longer than the Islanders have even been in the league. Go to the Bell Centre, or the ACC for a Leafs/Habs game, and you'll understand. That atmosphere is unreal, even in preseason games!
March 5, 2008 12:14 PM ET | Delete
I'll have to check it out. I saw the Rangers at the ACC,real nice place.My first game was a Rangers Islanders game, I was 11 or 12. I remeber my dad getting into a fight with these two Islanders fans behind us. The old man isn't even a big sports guy but he the two drunks behind us didn't have a chance. The old man is a former Teamster and just shy of a Goodfellas extra. With one quick "watch your mouths" I knew I had been introduced to the Rangers /Islanders war. Just after the truck driver old man put a wrap on them, Bernie Nichols clocked Randy Wood to the ice. Each game was better and better with people rolling down the steep stairs at the Coliseum. During the 94 run,their was better action in the stands then on the ice. And for the last time I've been to alot of games and have never seen riot police on horses for a regular season Tuesday night game!......
March 5, 2008 2:29 PM ET | Delete
I think that Rangers/Isles may seem like the greatest rivalry to those who live in NYC, but for me being a Buffalo fan I think Sabres/Leafs is the greatest in hockey, which is slightly better than Sabres/Sens. Whenever the sabres play the leafs in either buildings their are thousands of fans from the road team because Buffalo and Toronto are only about an hour away! And I can't imagine the islanders being in any great rivalry when the building is dead, like last year in the playoffs when they played the sabres in the first round you could hear a pin drop. As for the Rangers they do have loud fans and a great atsmosphere. But Sabres/leafs or Sabres/Sens, always a lot of intensity
March 6, 2008 10:24 AM ET | Delete
Here a pin drop in the Coliseum during the playoffs, what game were you watching??
March 6, 2008 12:08 PM ET | Delete
yeah I hate the fishsticks but I've seen some of the best playoff hockey in that building. Heres a guy who follows the Northeast Div and missed the Leafs/vs Islanders a few years back. A few thousand fans from Leafs nation hop over the border....We're talking about a Civil war in NY when Rangers/Islanders meet Brother vs Brother!
March 6, 2008 12:59 PM ET | Delete
mrleafsfan.. Are you actually saying that your teams' rivalry is the greatest because it's been going on for a longer duration? Apply your logic to your own argument and you'll see its flaws. That said, it's improbable that anyone can say which rivalry is the greatest because they don't have an objective view of them, myself included. There will always be bias based on personal experience and whatever team you happen to be a fan of. I'm sure that a large percentage of you that say Avs/Wings or Leafs/Sens have the greatest rivalry have never been to an Isles/Rangers game, or if you have, you haven't felt the same intensity that a fan of either one of those teams has felt, and vice versa. Again, it's pretty much impossible to determine with any kind of accuracy which rivalry is the greatest because we're all going to have our own person bias. It's like debating between cake and pie, or pirates and ninjas, you just can't.
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