Tuesday, September 03, 2013

Perception Before Prediction



I would like everyone to first watch what Dan Rosen of NHL.com had to say about the Islanders because he is spot on. I know a lot of fans are really excited about this upcoming year after what the Islanders did previously, making the playoffs for the first time in years and having an epic battle against the Pittsburgh Penguins in the first round before bowing out. It left a great positive feeling for the fans and now the fans want more. This is where I'm going to caution everyone: When you start doing your yearly predictions, please, please throw out last year! You heard me, toss it out! Why? Because you're perception may be wrong.

Allow me to explain: the definition of perception is this: "Perception (from the Latin perceptio, percipio) is the organization, identification, and interpretation of sensory information in order to represent and understand the environment." Translation: You're expecting what you saw last year. You're perceiving the Islanders to be better than an 8th place team because of what they did to Pitt. You're perceiving this team to go deeper in the playoffs because other teams really did not "improve" theirs as much. You get my point. Here are a few arguments why you need to get knocked off the high pedestal:

First, this is an 82 game schedule not 48. This season is longer, tougher and more stressful especially this being an Olympic year. It will take more than a good month and a half of winning hockey to make it to the playoffs.

Second, competition gets better with the addition of the Detroit Red Wings and Columbus Blue Jackets. Until I see a full implosion from the Red Wings, they're in the playoffs. Why? Cause they've earned that right. As for the Blue Jackets, they're better then the Jets and that bothers me.

Third, anyone who is good at math (like me) who comes out and says that the Islanders were on pace for 94 points last year and says they should be between 95-100 this year should never go to Vegas and play those odds. There is no mention of the Islanders battling in the 28 Western Conference games this year and doing well, that's all perception because of how well they did in the East the year before. To add to that, during a normal 82 game schedule after 48 games are played maybe three teams can be considered "eliminated" from playoff contention.  

My advice to my fellow Islanders fans is this. Perceive this team as a "Bubble Team," a non top 6 team, just for this year. Do the Islanders have the players and talent to make a legit run this year? Yes, of course! BUT enjoy you're teams training camp, see what moves they and other teams make because there will be a lot of moves before the season starts, then you can make a better prediction as to where your team is headed. Enjoy training camp!

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