Sign in with your NHL account:
  • Submit
  • Or
  • Sign in with Google
 

POINT BLANK: God Bless Biloxi

Saturday, 09.03.2005 / 12:00 AM / News
New York Islanders
X
Share with your Friends


POINT BLANK: God Bless Biloxi
Katrina impacts members of the Islanders' extended family

It was Thursday, Aug. 25 when Steve Stirling arrived in Biloxi, Miss. to take part in a press conference announcing a partnership between the Islanders, Sound Tigers and the ECHL Mississippi Sea Wolves.

"A great day," Stirling recalled today. "The people in Mississippi were so excited about their first affiliation with an NHL team. It got a lot of press attention locally. The Sea Wolves' staff people and fans were so warm, so welcoming to me. I flew home the next morning thinking that it was such a privilege to spend a day there and see a part of America I had never been to before."

48 hours later, Katrina arrived and changed everything - forever.

Biloxi has been ravaged by the hurricane. Thousands of homes have been destroyed. The Sea Wolves' home rink, described by Stirling as "no more than a sand-wedge from the beach," has more than eight feet of water where the ice usually is. The Beau Rivage, the beautiful casino-hotel where Stirling stayed in Biloxi¦well, you™ve probably seen the pictures on CNN.

After several tries, I finally made contact Saturday morning with my colleague, Mike Kelly, the broadcasting and media relations director of the Sea Wolves. Mike and his family retreated to a safe haven in Florida before Katrina hit. "We're very fortunate to be alive and have a safe place to stay," Mike wrote in an email. "Biloxi and the surrounding region have no power, no running water and no phone service."

As a result, the status of the Sea Wolves franchise is not only unknown, it's simply not a priority right now. Knowing their family members, friends and co-workers are safe is the only thing Mike Kelly and his colleagues care about.

Many of the homes of the Sea Wolves staffers suffered horrendous damage. In his email, Mike reported to me that they have been unable to confirm the safety and whereabouts of five members of the Sea Wolves family: one co-owner, one equipment staffer and three members of the sales and marketing team.

What do you say after hearing that?

I have no idea. All I know is that attention must be paid. The Islanders family and that includes our most important members, the fans will do something in the name of our new friends in Biloxi. Stay tuned.

For now, please consider going here to make donations to the American Red Cross.

The Mississippi Gulf Coast Chapter of the Red Cross is located in Biloxi. Patricia Kraemer (pkraemer@redcross-msgc.com) is the Disaster and Emergency Services Director. Please contact her if you can help the people of Mississippi.

When the press conference on Aug. 25 was over, Coach Stirling took a drive in his rental car up and down the coast. It was a rare opportunity to see a wonderful part of our country, he thought.

"I watch CNN and MSNBC and Fox and it™s just so sad to see those clips of the Beau Rivage and the floating casinos and the buildings around the arena and, of course, the homes," said Stirling. "It's unfathomable to me that Biloxi and New Orleans and the other areas hit may never be the same."

It doesn't necessarily have to be that way. With a little help from a lot of people, the South will rise again.

SCHEDULE

HOME
AWAY
PROMOTIONAL

STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 MTL 62 41 16 5 171 135 87
2 NYI 64 41 21 2 205 179 84
3 NYR 61 38 17 6 192 152 82
4 TBL 64 38 20 6 210 171 82
5 DET 61 35 15 11 180 159 81
6 PIT 62 36 17 9 181 155 81
7 WSH 64 34 20 10 188 159 78
8 BOS 62 31 22 9 165 161 71
9 FLA 63 28 22 13 154 178 69
10 PHI 63 27 25 11 168 183 65
11 OTT 60 27 23 10 171 163 64
12 NJD 63 26 27 10 141 164 62
13 CBJ 62 26 32 4 160 196 56
14 CAR 61 24 30 7 142 162 55
15 TOR 63 25 33 5 170 193 55
16 BUF 63 19 39 5 123 212 43

STATS

2014-2015 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
J. Tavares 64 30 35 4 65
K. Okposo 46 14 30 -2 44
R. Strome 64 14 27 22 41
B. Nelson 64 17 19 7 36
F. Nielsen 64 11 25 12 36
A. Lee 58 20 13 13 33
J. Bailey 52 12 19 10 31
J. Boychuk 54 7 23 16 30
N. Leddy 64 8 18 15 26
T. Hamonic 54 4 21 15 25
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
J. Halak 33 13 0 .911 2.46
C. Johnson 8 8 1 .889 3.08

NewYorkIslanders.com is the official Web site of the New York Islanders Hockey Club, L.P. and NewYorkIslanders.com are trademarks of New York Islanders Hockey Club, L.P.  NHL, the NHL Shield, the word mark and image of the Stanley Cup and NHL Conference logos are registered trademarks of the National Hockey League. All NHL logos and marks and NHL team logos and marks as well as all other proprietary materials depicted herein are the property of the NHL and the respective NHL teams and may not be reproduced without the prior written consent of NHL Enterprises, L.P. Copyright © 1999-2015 New York Islanders Hockey Club, L.P. and the National Hockey League. All Rights Reserved.

Privacy Policy |  AdChoices |  Terms of Use |  Contact  Us |  Employment |  Webmaster |  NHL.com Terms of Use