My friend Stan Fischler was at his Maven-ly best this evening.
Stan was on the pre-game show with Al Trautwig tonight going through the tripleheader of Islanders, Rangers and Devils games. The subject of Bill Guerin going goal-less for the first six games - oh no!!!! - came up. There were so many ways Stan could have gone.
Since I know he follows the Islanders very closely and even - dare I say it - loves the franchise - Stan could have pointed out that Guerin has played well considering a new team and new linemates. He could have mentioned how Guerin has a bunch of points and seemed only a good bounce away from getting on track in the goal scoring department. The Maven could have cited all the deserving praise Guerin has received for his impressive leadership since the day camp opened.
But no, this is Stan. So here's what he says, almost as a throw-away:
"Maybe the Islanders shouldn't have been in such a rush to name him the captain."
Vintage Stan Fischler.
Is there a fan who watched the pre-game show who suddenly didn't have a doubt Captain Bill was going to get his first goal tonight?
Of course, nobody could have predicted Guerin would get a hat trick.
Well, except Stan.
We kid because we love. We could have gone the obvious route and written a sonnet to Stan in honor of his winning the Lester Patrick Award this year for his service to U.S. hockey.
But that wouldn't have been very Fischleresque. Like the Maven, we dared to go in another direction.
Congratulations, Stan. Please, never change.