Yes, it seemed everywhere I looked on Twitter, there were Islander fans rooting really hard against their own team over the weekend, hoping to “fall” into a first round series with the Florida Panthers and avoid the Penguins.
I get it, the Pens have been playing great, the Panthers won what was clearly the weaker division in the East, it makes some sense. It sill made me uneasy. I hate the idea of rooting to lose, and I hate the idea that we all know which team you’d rather face. The truth is, you never know.
Think about it, the Pens have a question mark in Mark-Andre Fleury right now because of injury, the Panthers bring in Roberto Luongo to possibly stir the echos of Mike Milbury trades gone bad. Are we sure we want the Panthers?
Personally, I don’t think it matters. The Isles come in banged up, not playing very well, and still not having won a playoff series in 23 years. This is still the team that couldn’t generate any offense in the playoffs last season, and has been inconsistent on that front all year.
I think it’s going to be 24 years without a series win. I hope not, but I’m predicting the Panthers in 6.
Let’s at least hope the Isles don’t get swept. I’m going to be out of the country until the 21st. If the series only goes 4, I’ll miss the entire thing. If it’s because the Isles won, I’ll take it though! I want to see some Islander playoff hockey!