Sound Tigers Hospital Visits

11 Players Gave Holiday Gifts at Five Hospitals Across Long Island

Monday, 12.17.2012 / 9:59 PM ET / Community
By Jesse D. Eisenberg
X
Share with your Friends


Sound Tigers Hospital Visits
11 Players Gave Holiday Gifts at Five Hospitals Across Long Island
Johan Sundstrom and Kevin Poulin sort through presents at Winthrop University Hospital - VIEW PHOTO GALLERY

Hospital carts usually reserved for dispensing medication were transformed Monday to dispatch a different kind of theapy.

Four-wheeled mountains of stuffed animals and dolls, footballs and baseball mitts, DVDs and videogames were carefully guided through the pediatric wings of hospitals across Long Island, as Bridgeport Sound Tigers players deposited the precious cargo in guest rooms and activity centers along the way.

Now in its sixth consecutive year, the club’s annual holiday gift-giving event saw 11 Sound Tigers disperse to five hospitals to interact with children who are spending the holiday season away from home.

“This is our most exciting event of the year and we can’t thank the Sound Tigers enough for coming today,” Nikki Adams, a Child Life Specialist at Winthrop University Hospital said. “We provide daily programming to help keep our pediatric patients comfortable and happy, but once a year we know to expect a whole new level of excitement and fun when the team comes to hand out presents.”

Everything the club could get its hands on a week earlier at Toys R Us was up for grabs, thanks to a partnership with National Arbitration and Mediation. In addition to Winthrop, the team visited the Steven and Alexandra Cohen Children’s Medical Center, Northshore Hospital, St. Mary’s Children’s Hospital and Nassau University Medical Center.

“The highlight of the day was really getting to see the kids smile,” goaltender Kevin Poulin said. “A lot of them have been in the hospital for a while now, so watching them light up when they saw the toy cart and then getting to play with them made my day.”

These days really put everything in perspective for us - Kevin Poulin

Gifts, autographs and pictures were only the start of each patient’s bed-side visit. Calvin de Haan and Casey Cizikas offered homework help at St. Mary’s; David Ullstrom and Anders Nilsson showed off their arts and crafts expertise at Northshore; and Johan Sundstrom and John Persson clumsily toppled Jenga blocks at Winthrop.

“I had a lot of fun today,” Sundstrom said. “We visited a lot of children who are fighting cancer. We played a lot of games and there were a lot of smiles. It was a good day.”

Several patients weren’t able to enjoy such close one-on-one time with players due to isolation orders, designed to keep their hospital rooms as sterile as possible. One such patient, Nicholas Pedone, accepted his gift from a nurse go-between, but the players found another way to brighten the avid sports fan’s day. Pedone and his family have been building a campaign to raise awareness for his disease, Neuroblastoma. It didn’t take long for Pedone’s new teammates to learn about his ongoing fight and to spread the word, tweeting their support with links to his website and facebook page.

The icing on the cake for every patient came in the form of free tickets to upcoming Sound Tigers games. With empty carts, and their next home game scheduled for Wednesday night, the players headed back to Bridgeport immediately following the event.

“These days really put everything in perspective for us,” Poulin said. “You won’t hear guys complaining about the long drives or the early practices after having such a positive day with these kids.”

PHOTO GALLERY

SCHEDULE

HOME
AWAY
PROMOTIONAL

STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 p - NYR 82 53 22 7 252 192 113
2 y - MTL 82 50 22 10 221 189 110
3 x - TBL 82 50 24 8 262 211 108
4 x - WSH 82 45 26 11 242 203 101
5 x - NYI 82 47 28 7 252 230 101
6 x - DET 82 43 25 14 235 221 100
7 x - OTT 82 43 26 13 238 215 99
8 x - PIT 82 43 27 12 221 210 98
9 BOS 82 41 27 14 213 211 96
10 FLA 82 38 29 15 206 223 91
11 CBJ 82 42 35 5 236 250 89
12 PHI 82 33 31 18 215 234 84
13 NJD 82 32 36 14 181 216 78
14 CAR 82 30 41 11 188 226 71
15 TOR 82 30 44 8 211 262 68
16 BUF 82 23 51 8 161 274 54

STATS

2014-2015 PLAYOFFS
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
J. Bailey 3 1 3 2 4
K. Okposo 3 2 1 2 3
J. Tavares 3 1 2 3 3
R. Strome 3 2 0 1 2
B. Nelson 3 2 0 1 2
L. Visnovsky 3 0 2 4 2
C. Clutterbuck 3 1 0 1 1
C. de Haan 3 0 1 0 1
N. Leddy 3 0 1 0 1
M. Martin 3 0 1 0 1
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
J. Halak 2 1 0 .929 2.01

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