TORONTO — John Tavares is not absolutely sure what to be expecting when he performs for the Toronto Maple Leafs at the New York Islanders for the first time Thursday (7 p.m. ET ESPN+, MSG+, TSN4, NHL.Television), but he is well prepared for whatsoever response he may well acquire.
“I am not making an attempt to overthink it,” Tavares mentioned Tuesday. “I think I am just heading to try out to go out there and be myself and enjoy and just try out to enable the Maple Leafs. Naturally, it can be my first time back, it is what it is. No matter what reception I get, I am just heading to try out to go out there and enjoy.”
Tavares expended the first 9 seasons of his NHL occupation with the Islanders, the ultimate 5 as captain, right before signing a seven-yr, $77 million deal with the Maple Leafs as a free of charge agent July 1, 2018. He had 621 details (272 plans, 349 helps) in 669 game titles for New York.
Tavares mentioned he understands the response from Islanders fans at Nassau Coliseum might not be a beneficial, but that his most important aim will be executing at his greatest for his new workforce.
“I have a perception of what it may well be like, and whatsoever it is, it will be,” Tavares mentioned. “I am just heading out there and try out to enjoy and do what I have to do to enable the Maple Leafs.”
Tavares has 66 details (35 plans, 31 helps) in 62 game titles this season for Toronto (38-20-4), which is in third spot in the Atlantic Division.
The Maple Leafs will host the Edmonton Oilers on Wednesday right before touring to Lengthy Island. Mentor Mike Babcock mentioned he recognizes what the video game from the Islanders will suggest to Tavares, but he hopes Toronto will accomplish better than it did in a 4- decline at Scotiabank Arena on Dec. 29 in Tavares’ first video game from New York.
“I just think it will be emotional for him,” Babcock mentioned. “We continue to have a video game right before that, and we have not expended any time speaking about [the game Thursday]. The very last time we performed the Islanders, they flat out outplayed us, we did not enjoy, so we’d like to do a better career.”
Tavares, who was minus-1 with 5 photographs on goal in 17:17 in the Dec. 29 video game from the Islanders, mentioned his aim remains on the Oilers for now, but he admitted it will be complicated to retain his return to New York out of his thoughts the moment the video game from Edmonton is more than.
“Well, I know it can be on Thursday and I am making an attempt to retain my aim on participating in very well (on Wednesday) and carrying out what I have to do to enable the workforce, so I am absolutely sure immediately after tomorrow night’s video game, I am going to definitely commence making ready to go out there and just try out to enjoy very well,” Tavares mentioned.
The Islanders have split game titles amongst Nassau Coliseum and Barclays Centre this season. Tavares, who scored his first goal in his NHL debut at the Coliseum, mentioned he is glad his return to New York will manifest in the arena he expended so substantially of the early part of his NHL occupation.
“I think it can be good being at the Coliseum no doubt for myself definitely,” Tavares mentioned. “Starting there, I had my first video game, first goal, a ton of good recollections. I expended a ton of time there. It’s a major part of the Islander background and who the Islanders are. It will be exciting to be there in that atmosphere once again.”