Sunday, October 7, 2007
An Open Letter to Mike Comrie
Unfortunately, Islander fans haven't had the opportunity to watch you on a regular basis over the past seven years you have been in the league. Watching your play on the ice last night at the home opener was a gift to all Islander fans.
I haven't had much of an opportunity to observe your skills either. I did see glimpses of it last year, when I am sure you remember this, you undressed Deron Quint (a then Islanders defenseman), with a sweet move and beat Dubie to score a goal for the Senators. Little did I know at that time, you would be part of our team in the near future.
(Readers: If you haven't seen this goal, you can view it here http://islanders.nhl.tv/team/console?hlg=20062007,2,1170&event=NYI1202348)
Thank you for coming here and relishing the opportunity to become a team leader. I could just see the grit and intensity last night on your face and it is something that has been missing from this team for a long time. I had the unique opportunity last night to attend the Ted Nolan press conference and when speaking of you, he described you as somebody who can be that "go to guy" for a team. He also mentioned that "your best players have to be your best players", referring to you, Billy Guerin, Satan, etc. If your performance last night and in the season so far is any indication of the type of player you are, then we have indeed found our go to guy.
Coach Nolan also gave you one of the greatest compliments I think can be bestowed upon a player. He commented on how you have a excellent combination of skills and smarts on the rink. You know what to do with the puck in tough situations, you "think" the game through, and make the players around you better because of it.
I know it has only been two games but I am so impressed with the soft hands you have shown around the net. One of the guys in this league that has always impressed me with his movement on the ice is Tim Connolly. He has this unique way about him, where slight body movements and quick stick movements throw the defenders off, giving him the opportunity to set up a teammate in a position to score or put it by the goaltender on his own. You seem to possess those same qualities.
As the season progresses, I am looking forward to the privilege of watching you each and every night. Hopefully all Islander fans will realize what type of player you are how lucky we are to have you. Please continue to wear that Islanders crest proudly. As you know, we are a proud franchise with a rich tradition of hard work, strong character and skill. You fit that tradition perfectly and all Islander fans, if they haven't already, will soon find that out.