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MIKE & 'THE DOG': BIG YEAR NEEDED FROM YASH

Wednesday, 08.10.2005 / 12:00 AM / News
New York Islanders
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MIKE & \'THE DOG\': BIG YEAR NEEDED FROM YASH

Christopher "Mad Dog" Russo was on his own this afternoon -- the more even-keeled and sometimes moderator Mike Francesa in on vacation -- but the puppy was on his best behavior during a 20-minute interview this afternoon with Mike Milbury.

The only time "Dog" sounded like he needed to scratch was when he pressed Milbury with his theory that Islanders star center Alexei Yashin must take his game to another level. Milbury disagreed with him on some points -- for instance, Yashin had a strong 2001 series against Toronto, contrary to Chris' opinion -- but he acknowledged Yashin's time has most definitely come.

"It's a new cast of characters for him," Milbury said on WFAN. "I didn't completely subscribe to the theory that we needed to place a star alongside Alexei, but the fact is (Miroslav) Satan is a terrific player. Alexei is definitely our go-to guy. He's got to kick it up a notch.

"Alexei said to me, 'I just want to know that you and the coaches have confidence in me.' I told him that we did, but that we're also going to stay on him all year if things pop up that concern us. He's comfortable with that." Finally, to Russo, the GM said, "I'll agree with you on this: he has to have a big year, or we're in trouble."

Among other subjects, Milbury said he was very pro-shootout because the NHL owes a lot to the fans and the fans want a winner and a loser. He added that he was even in favor of making the nets larger. Milbury admitted to mixed feelings about Wayne Gretzky's move behind the bench because, "It's a very bloody business, and I like my icons to be forever on a pedestal." However, Milbury added that if any legend could pull it off it would be Gretzky because he's been doing it his whole life.

SCHEDULE

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AWAY
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STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 NYI 47 32 14 1 155 130 65
2 DET 48 28 11 9 144 123 65
3 TBL 49 30 15 4 158 131 64
4 MTL 46 30 13 3 126 108 63
5 PIT 48 27 13 8 143 124 62
6 WSH 48 25 14 9 144 124 59
7 NYR 45 27 14 4 135 110 58
8 BOS 48 25 16 7 126 121 57
9 FLA 45 20 15 10 111 127 50
10 TOR 49 22 23 4 143 152 48
11 OTT 46 19 18 9 126 128 47
12 PHI 49 20 22 7 134 149 47
13 CBJ 46 21 22 3 117 145 45
14 NJD 48 18 22 8 109 135 44
15 CAR 47 17 25 5 102 122 39
16 BUF 48 14 31 3 90 171 31

STATS

2014-2015 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
J. Tavares 47 22 24 -1 46
K. Okposo 46 14 30 -2 44
R. Strome 47 9 25 17 34
B. Nelson 47 15 15 6 30
F. Nielsen 47 9 17 5 26
J. Boychuk 37 4 20 17 24
J. Bailey 35 8 14 9 22
N. Leddy 47 7 14 15 21
N. Kulemin 47 11 9 1 20
A. Lee 41 13 5 8 18
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
J. Halak 26 9 0 .913 2.37
C. Johnson 6 5 0 .870 3.38

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