BOSSY CONFIRMS; ALL LEGENDS ARE IN
by Chris Botta
The greatest goal scorer of his generation will be there when the Islanders host a Celebration of the 1980 Stanley Cup team on March 4 at 7:00, prior to a match between the 2006 Islanders and Philadelphia Flyers.
The event will give everyone in Islanders Country another chance to remember the career of the magical Bossy and how such an amazing individual talent fit so seamlessly into the fabric of an extraordinary team. Just take a look at Bossy's all-too-brief career statistics:
Year Team GP G A Pts Pim
1977-78 Islanders 73 53 38 91 6
1978-79 Islanders 80 69 57 126 25
1979-80 Islanders 75 51 41 92 12
1980-81 Islanders 79 68 51 119 32
1981-82 Islanders 80 64 83 147 22
1982-83 Islanders 79 60 58 118 20
1983-84 Islanders 67 51 67 118 8
1984-85 Islanders 76 58 59 117 38
1985-86 Islanders 80 61 62 123 14
1986-87 Islanders 63 38 37 75 33
NHL Totals 752 573 553 1126 210
All that plus being the first rookie in the history of the NHL to score 50 goals, a Conn Smythe Trophy for the '82 playoffs, three Lady Byng Trophies for his explosive yet gentlemanly play, 50 goals in his first 50 games in '80-81 and, of course, four consecutive Stanley Cups. Injuries forced him to retire after ten seasons and at the age of 32, but his impact on the Islanders will be remembered forever.
"Boss had a remarkable body of work as a goal scorer," says Bob Nystrom, "but what he didn't get enough credit for was how he was such a good player in all zones and such an important part of us being a complete team. Boss could do it all."
When Bossy looks back on the 1979-80 season and the events leading to the Islanders' first Stanley Cup, he vividly recalls a tongue-lashing from an unlikely source. The Islanders were mired around the .500 mark at mid-season, there was some internal squabbling and too many team meetings to remember. Then Dave Langevin, a first-year Islander, took the floor.
"Bammer told us, 'I had heard so many great things about this team before I got here,'" Bossy recalled. "He said, 'I thought we all had more pride than we're showing.'"
That, and the addition of Butch Goring, changed everything. The rest is history.
This week's news that Mike Bossy and Bryan Trottier are attending the March 4 Celebration means that all of the Islanders' Hall of Famers will be present: GM Bill Torrey, Coach Al Arbour, Bossy, Trottier and their linemate Clark Gillies, and captain Denis Potvin.
The 1980 Stanley Cup celebration on March 4, presented by Modell's and Newsday, will begin at 7:00 pm, followed by the regular season matchup between the 2005-06 Islanders and Philadelphia Flyers. In addition to the 1980 team, the Stanley Cup will also be in attendance at the Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum.
Islanders full season subscribers will receive an added treat. Season subscribers are invited to the Islanders' morning skate on March 4, followed by an introduction of the 1980 team, sneak preview of that night's ceremony, plus a meet-and-greet with the legends.
Tickets are still available for the March 4 game between the Islanders and Flyers, preceded by the celebration of the 1980 Stanley Cup team. Tickets are available at the Coliseum box office, TicketMaster or by contacting the Islanders at 1.800.882.ISLES.