Islanders Were Well Represented

If you missed the World Junior Championships last night in Montreal, you missed what may have been the greatest junior game….ever. In a hard fought battle, the United States came out victorious over Canada 5-4 in a shootout. There were two prospects who were in this game and represented the possible future of the New York Islanders: USA’s Kieffer Bellows and Canada’s Mathew Barzal. Who did I pick to win?

It was true Bellows did have a somewhat of quiet tournament, but you heard his name when he did not have the puck on his blade, so he was due and did he ever deliver. Bellows ended up scoring two goals and was all over the ice the entire game. Barzal was no slouch either as he was doing what he did best, create scoring opportunities for his line mates. Barzal even got an assist on one of the early Canada goals that allowed them to take a lead. In the end, however, it was team USA with their flag raised the highest.

So what does this mean for Islanders fans? For the immediate future, nothing. This was just another step in the development process for both players and now it’s time for them to return to their respective teams and make runs into the playoffs. Barzal will be competing for the Memorial Cup in juniors and Bellows looks to go to the Frozen Four of the NCAA. For now the Bridgeport Sound Tigers do not seem to be in the Calder Cup playoffs, so most Isles fans will likely see them at the prospect camp in the summer. The hope is that these rivals will someday be part of a scoring line that will have Barzal center Bellows and another forward in what will surely be a top six line for the Islanders. For now, congratulations to both players and Islanders fans should be proud and excited of what the future may look like.


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