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Wednesday, December 1, 2010
Donnie Pucks: What we learned about the Islanders in November

By Don La Greca

What did we learn about the New York Islanders?

They are way too sensitive.

The treatment of Chris Botta of AOL Fanhouse was a joke. Revoking his credential was a very poor way to handle the situation. It may have distracted the hockey world about how bad the Islanders' start to the season has been. But then only added to the embarrassment.  I like Garth Snow. I think he dropped the ball on this one.

Rick DiPietro is playing better.

Dipietro is healthy for the first time in a while.  After a slow start, he's been better late in the month. He was great in an OT loss to the Thrashers and stoned the Devils to end the Isles' 14-game slide.

Step back for John Tavares.

Tavares has eight goals, not bad for the second-year player, but only two in November. It's tough spot for him on a team that's struggling. He needs to fight through it. Keep shooting the puck. He has scored in half the games in which he's had four or more shots.

Why was Josh Bailey sent down?

This one I don't get. He hasn't been great, just three goals and three assists but what does going down to the minors prove? Let the kid play with the big boys. I talked to a few people around the league and no one really knows why this was done.

Matt Moulson has been solid.

This time last season Matt had five multi-point games, this year just two. He's still on pace to have a similar season. Last November, he had five goals. This November, he had four. Last year at this time, he had 11 goals, this season eight. He may be a tad off the pace but there is still time for him to match last year's coming-out party.

It's too early to tell anything about Jack Capuano.

Much the same with Jack that you saw with Scott Gordon as far as results. I believe that Snow pulled the one lever that he had left when he fired Gordon. It's not like Snow had any more players to call up or trades to make. Capuano has deserved the chance to coach in the NHL and he knows the kids. That doesn't mean he won't meet the same fate in two years.