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SportTavares on Long Island return: 'I really embraced being an Islander'

04:45  27 february  2019
04:45  27 february  2019 Source:   thescore.com

Long Island Man Arrested For Shooting Down Drone That Looks For Missing Dogs

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If Long Island were legally an island , that water would be considered the open sea, and therefore be regulated by the federal government. In 2016, the five-time All-Star led the Islanders to their first playoff-series victory since 1993. “ I really embraced being an Islander ,” he said.

Tavares gave the Islanders new life, and his decision to leave cuts deep among fans of a team that hasn't experienced much success in several decades. The Islanders blanked Toronto 4-0 in the first and only meeting between the teams this season, with Tavares recording five shots on goal.

Tavares on Long Island return: 'I really embraced being an Islander'© Christian Petersen / Getty Images Sport / Getty

After leaving the New York Islanders for his hometown Toronto Maple Leafs this past summer, John Tavares will finally return to Nassau Coliseum on Thursday night.

"I grew a lot in my time there and really thankful for the impact a lot of people had on me," Tavares said on Tuesday, according to TSN's Mark Masters. "I'm not trying to overthink it. I just try and go out there and be myself and play and help the Maple Leafs."

Tavares gave the Islanders new life, and his decision to leave cuts deep among fans of a team that hasn't experienced much success in several decades. The 28-year-old is well aware that he could face an unpleasant greeting.

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John Tavares returns to the Coliseum (where the Islanders are playing half their home dates, because that Brooklyn thing really isn’t working out) for the first John Tavares booed mercilessly by Islanders fans in return to Nassau Coliseum. John Tavares left the Islanders to sign a seven-year, million

Jilted Islanders Fans Have Harsh Words For John Tavares In Extremely Long Island Video: NHL Mailbag: Would this Maple Leafs' John Tavares readies for return to Long Island : ' I was proud to be an Islander '. The former Islanders captain will play his first game back on Long Island Thursday.

"Yeah, I mean, you have a sense for what it might be like so whatever it is, it will be, I'll just try and go out there and try to play," he said.

Tavares carved out his legacy on Long Island, scoring 272 goals and recording 621 points to rank seventh and fifth, respectively, in franchise history. In 2016, the five-time All-Star led the Islanders to their first playoff-series victory since 1993.

“I really embraced being an Islander,” he said. “I loved it. It was a great place to play. I never didn’t enjoy my time there even when times weren’t going well.

"I did everything I could to just help the team hopefully win a Stanley Cup and unfortunately we weren't able to do that and I take responsibility, especially being the captain, not doing a good enough job consistently."

The Mississauga, Ontario native is on pace for career highs in goals and points during his first season with the Maple Leafs.

The Islanders blanked Toronto 4-0 in the first and only meeting between the teams this season, with Tavares recording five shots on goal.

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