The loss to the Sabres came after previous season-ending losses to New Jersey last Sunday, Pittsburgh on Tuesday and the New York Rangers on Thursday. Each terrible defeat ended the Islanders' season in an embarrassing and dismal way that was wholly indicative of every game the team has lost over the last 25 seasons.
Sunday's disastrous loss saw the Islanders misfire 41 huge shots on Buffalo goalie Ryan Miller and fail to score on three enormous, game-changing power plays. Sabres defenseman Christian Ehrhoff, who was very nearly an Islander before bolting the team like everybody always does, scored a back-breaking and ironic shorthanded goal. Thomas Vanek and Alexander Sulzer scored the other inevitable goals for the Sabres.
"Every season-ending loss is difficult, especially when you have four in one week," said Islanders center John Tavares, who had a goal against Buffalo. "It's a catastrophe, and we'll definitely never recover. Right now, my focus is on demanding a trade or retiring after every ruinous defeat."
"I liked a lot of things, despite our season coming to another agonizing, painful end," said head coach Jack Capuano, one of the aforementioned idiots. "Guys played hard, but, you know, we were never going to win anyway."
The Islanders' problems against the Sabres were all too familiar, having plagued the team since the early 1990's. In the first period, they didn't capitalize on chances, got unreliable goaltending, didn't play with enough heart and had no toughness. Tied at one goal apiece, New York started the second period with passive forechecking before giving way to an untalented roster, mismatched line combinations, injuries to key players, a cheap owner, a clueless general manager, and obvious lack of pride and heart.
In the third, some furious, too-little-too-late chances followed infrequent and inaccurate shots, no net-front presence, disjointed special teams and a depressing, unwelcoming arena that is most likely cursed by black magic. Goaltender Evgeni Nabokov was pulled with a minute to go, but extra skater Josh Bailey did not change the Islanders' public image or earn them any respect among NHL rivals.
"Well, obviously, we're devastated, just like we were after the first three season-ending losses," said forward Casey Cizikas, who will probably be scratched for some bum before the next season-ending loss. "We outshot them by a ton, controlled the puck for over half the game, hit two posts, had good looks on the power play and were playing against one of the best goalies in the conference.
"But this loss is exactly like the few hundred that came before it. I mean, really there's no reason to even play. But I guess we'll be back at it Monday night anyway."
NOTES: Islanders owner Charles Wang did not attend the game because clearly he doesn't care about winning and loves to flush money down the toilet just because he can. ... Goaltender Tim Thomas, acquired on Thursday from Boston in another salary-cap circumventing scam that will definitely ruin the new collective bargaining agreement for the entire league, was listed as a healthy scratch. ... Announced attendance was 12,385, but the fans booing, cursing and vowing never to watch this team again numbered in the millions.
This is a parody. The ledge is getting a little crowded. Maybe you should come back inside.