Fourth and long: Hartford postgame

Always love a fourth-line kinda game, this one with the added bonus of it being, really, a four-line game.

“They really don’t change night to night,” Brent Thompson said. “They’re physical. They play a simple game. Tonight, they got rewarded.”

Two points for Josh Holmstrom, goal for the captain, gorgeous setup from Connor Jones.

“When your fourth line plays that well, usually the rest follow suit,” Thompson said.

Tenacious effort. They controlled play most of the night; Hartford had a couple of little surges, maybe most extensively late in the second leading into its second power play, but they didn’t last all that long. In all tonight I had shot attempts 72-43 for Bridgeport, 61-37 at even strength.

“It was just the mindset of wanting to play a full 60-minute hockey game,” Josh Holmstrom said.

“Doing the right things, that’s what we’re focused on. Everything kind of followed in the offensive end.”

Jones and Ben Holmstrom both made a point to talk about the defense tonight as a group.

“Toews, Vandy, everyone’s mobile out there,” Jones said. “All six of those guys did a really good job getting the forwards pucks. They made it easy on us.”

For Seth Helgeson, it wasn’t only the defense. He saw a real cohesion as a unit of five from everyone.

“It’s a good team win,” Helgeson said. “That’s what we needed going into the weekend.”


Thompson: “They’re buying in. They’re coachable, and they’re buying in. That’s the quality leadership the Islanders have assembled.”

Steve Bernier is staying home from the trip. Thompson expects him to be ready for next weekend.

One goal against partly off a loose-puck retrieval by Hartford, one-on-one kind of thing. One off a turnover behind the net. One on a tip. “We’ve got things we need to clean up,” Thompson said. “Communication between our defense and goaltender on the breakout. The defensive zone can be a little better as far as eliminating the tip. For the most part, it was a step in the right direction.”

Helgeson had a three-assist game for Albany on Feb. 27, 2015, in Syracuse. His last two-point game was two years ago this week, Nov. 20, 2015. He’d gone 48 AHL games without a goal, though he scored one in Columbus last season on Feb. 4 for Jersey.

First two-point game in the AHL for Josh Holmstrom. First goal in 50 games (Dec. 10 at Binghamton). His first goal here, actually. The other was in Hartford, a year ago yesterday, his first AHL goal.

With some prodding (hi, Stan!), third time the Holmstrom brothers have points in the same game, and in all three, they had a point on the same goal: They both assisted on a Josh Winquist goal on Nov. 18, 2016, and Josh also assisted on a Ben goal on April 9, last season’s home finale.

First seven-goal game in over a year and a half.

Prescout. No Martel, no problem. Mark Friedman, who has a point in three in a row, took this late (two senses) hit from Tony Turgeon.

A loss for Worcester tonight in Toledo.

Gallant Suspended: four games for Alex.

Belleville signed veteran Chris Kelly to a PTO. There are a remarkable number of games and years since he was part of that Binghamton-Bridgeport series in 2003.

Jason Chaimovitch throws down.

Today’s good-gravy-what-the-heck horrible: Thoughts to Egypt.

And we leave 410 this weekend. I have said before that I’d be more nostalgic if I ever had a desk. I already miss my mailslot; that disappeared when they renovated the newsroom almost a decade ago. (Nah, I kid. I’ll miss it a little. Especially when I’ve got to remember the new mailing address.)

Michael Fornabaio