Kevin Schultz, Islanders Point Blank:Last week, Ziggy Palffy retired from hockey — we presume for good this time — and even though it’s a bit late, we’d be remiss for not at least giving him the retro video treatment.
Palffy played for the Islanders from 1993 through 1999 and that era in Islanders hockey is sort of left behind the curtain many times; the noteworthy items from that era are almost all negative. That’s partially evidenced in our own Retro Video segments (they’ve all been from 1993 or earlier and post-2000).
The following video is from the 1996-97 season, the Islanders 25th anniversary season and the year Mike Milbury relieved himself of coaching duties. The Islanders would finish with 70 points that year and 71 the next, the only times during Palffy’s tenure the team would crack the 60 point barrier. 70 points wouldn’t get them out of the Atlantic Division cellar — the division was seven teams in that era — although 71 was good for fourth the next year. But even that was still 12 points removed from the eighth playoff berth. That’s as good as it got during that era.
Anyway, we present the following video of a Ziggy Palffy hat trick on March 29, 1997 at the Coliseum against the Boston Bruins. Palffy would score three goals in an 8-2 rout on goalie Paxton Schafer, who finished his three-game NHL career with 19 saves on 25 shots. It’s an interesting trip back in time to that era; there’s the obnoxious foghorn after every goal, fisherman jerseys and even an Eric Fichaud sighting.
Come for the Palffy hat trick, stay for the post-game Stan Fischler interview. Before there was Nabby and Stan, there was Ziggy and Stan.