The NHL bubble sounds like a competitive athlete’s paradise.
Coming off Saturday’s 2-1 win over the Florida Panthers in Game 1 of the Stanley Cup qualifiers, the Islanders decided to simultaneously compete in two tournaments at once.
During their downtime at the hotel, captain Anders Lee gathered the team to participate in a pingpong championship. The winners will be crowned the “Boys of the Isle” champion.
“We’ll let you know when it’s all crowned and stuff like that. It’s been a fun thing to do in the afternoon,” Lee said during media availability with reporters on Monday from the bubble in Toronto. “Everyone’s involved, it’s a good hang, and we’re just trying to have some fun with it. We’re enjoying our time with each other, spending a lot of time with one another, looking forward to playing the games obviously. It’s fun to just be in a group and get competitive again.”
On Sunday, the Islanders’ Twitter account released a video of Lee showing off the bracket the team came up with, including the rosters and list of rules for the competition.
While the players may be having all of the fun off the ice to maintain positive momentum, head coach Barry Trotz isn’t involved as much. He said the guys are doing this on their own, and really having fun with it.
“For me, personally, it’s like a giant man cave,” Trotz said. “We eat, we spend time together as a group. Guys are doing their own thing. They’ve got pingpong, workout rooms, and even simulated golf.”
Although the players may be focused on their dual competitions, Trotz is trying to figure out which defenseman will be filling Johnny Boychuk’s spot for Tuesday’s Game 2, which begins at noon.
“I’m comfortable with the 10 defensemen right now,” Trotz said. “I’ll tell you this, it’ll be [Andy] Greene or [Noah] Dobson, or both will be on the ice [Tuesday], and we’ll make a decision there.”
Source: New York Post
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