Love is in the air, except of course if your a high talent pending Free Agent looking to leave dodge. Becoming a Former Anything is an eventuality. Come the deadline many players will have found a new home, at least temporarily. As for us we like to revel in the happenings of Former Islanders. On Thursday night, a lovely and cold Valentine's Day, 16 teams faced off in 8 high energy tilts. FIs are lending their support so let us look at their contributions from a day of love:
* Jeff Hamilton had a powerplay assist on the opening goal of the game as the Carolina Hurricanes defeated the visiting Pittsburgh Penguins 4-2. Snapping a 5 game point-less streak, Hamilton has 18 points (5 goals, 13 assists) on 51 games. He has notched 13 of those points (4 goals, 9 assists) with the man advantage.
* Jason Blake assisted on the too-little-too-late goal with 19 seconds left in regulation as host Toronto Maple Leafs fell to the Islanders 5-4. Blake has 11 goals and 25 assists for 36 points on 59 games. This season, in 3 games against his old team, Blake has recorded 2 assists.
* Brent Sopel had 2 even strength assists including 1 on the game winner as the Chicago Blackhawks eviscerated the host Nashville Predators 6-1. Sopel has 1 goal and 17 assists for 18 points on 47 games. He has has back-to-back 2 assists nights for the first time since January 3-5, 2002 while still with his original team, the Vancouver Canucks!
* Roberto Luongo is having a tough recently. Luongo took the OTL as the Vancouver Canucks fell to the visiting Minnesota Wild 5-4 in the SO. Luongo stopped 22 of 26 shots in the first 65 minutes but only 1 of 3 in the SO frame. Luongo is now 24-18-7 on the season with a .921 save percentage and a 2.23 goals against average. FI teammate Trevor Linden scored in the first half of the third round of the SO to tie it but Minnesota answered back immediately to seal the win. Brad Isbister opened the Vancouver scoring with less that 5 minutes remaining in the 2nd period. Isbister has 9 points (4 goals, 5 assists) on 37 games.
Check back soon for weekend updates and highlights here at FIW.