Those were the days, my friend: Five Years Ago

December 2, 2005: Chris Madden, one of four goalies on NHL contracts with the Islanders, gets hurt in a pileup in the crease at Lowell. He leaves the game at the end of the first period of a 4-0 win* with a strained knee ligament and a torn meniscus. He’ll dress in games later in December and in January before finally having surgery**.

December 30: Rick DiPietro sprains a knee in a pileup in the crease.

January 2, 2006: The Islanders recall Wade Dubielewicz to replace DiPietro and back up Garth Snow. Frederic Cloutier comes up to Bridgeport from Pensacola.

January 4: Cloutier shuts out Philadelphia 1-0 at Harbor Yard. He goes into the dressing room after the game and finds Dubielewicz on television: Snow has suffered sprained MCLs in both knees in a pileup in the crease.

January 5: The Islanders sign Cloutier to an NHL contract. The Sound Tigers sign Cody Rudkowsky to a pro tryout.

January 6: Gregg Naumenko signs a PTO to back up Rudkowsky.

January 12: DiPietro returns to the Islanders, so Cloutier returns from the Islanders. Naumenko is released.

January 20: Rudkowsky suffers a knee injury that’s expected to keep him out for two weeks. It doesn’t.

January 25: Nick Boucher signs a PTO, but Rudkowsky is well enough to back up at Wilkes-Barre***. Boucher’s PTO ends promptly.

February 4: Snow plays a conditioning game in Bridgeport. He stops 29 of 30 shots, becoming Bridgeport’s all-time leader in goals-against average and save percentage****.

February 5: Dubielewicz returns from the Islanders, ending a wild two months of goaltending that gave Tom Liodice and me a joke for all time. It’s the kind of thing you never expect to happen again.

*-So when someone asks you “hey, when was the only combined shutout for Sound Tigers goalies?” you’ll have the answer handy. It’s also the first game of Dave Karpa’s pro tryout, by the way.
**-Madden will never play another professional game.
***-He has a decent angle to watch Robert Nilsson score that lacrosse-style goal, and to watch the last game of Dave Karpa’s pro tryout — and Karpa will never play another professional game.
****-Minimum one game played.

Michael Fornabaio