three cups





The Champs

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1981-82 Quotes

Here's what the Islanders and others had to say about the 1981-82 season. Select the person's name to see the quotes:

Al Arbour, Islander coach:

"The first year they said it was a fluke, the next we proved it wasn't, and this year we proved that we are a great team."

On his players: "I love those guys. I want to hug them and kiss them. I want to take them home with me.”

See Arbour's quotes from 1982-83

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Bob Bourne, Islander forward:

On game five of the first-round playoff series against Pittsburgh, when Mike Bullard nearly scored an overtime goal that would have ended the Islanders' reign: "I lie awake at night and thank God that Bullard didn't take more time on his shot. If he had, perhaps they'd be celebrating in Pittsburgh today."

"I see the word awesome a lot of times. I see we've got a lot of talent, but I don't know about awesome. But how can you not say we're great?"

“That’s why we win. Because we’ll never forget what it was like to lose.”

See Bourne's quotes from 1979-80

See Bourne's quotes from 1980-81

See Bourne's quotes from 1982-83

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Dave Langevin, Islander defenseman:

"We're a lot like Rodney Dangerfield: We don't get no respect. But what we do is just keep bringing home the cup."

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Roger Nielson, Vancouver coach:

"Right now, they are by far the most powerful team in hockey. At the beginning of the year, everyone figured they'd win it. In the middle of the year, everyone figured they'd win it. And at the start of the playoffs, everyone figured they'd win it."

"Sometimes a team with heart can beat a team with ability, but when the team with ability has heart, there's nothing you can do. And the Islanders have a lot of heart."

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Bob Nystrom, Islander forward:

On the decisive game five of the Pittsburgh series, in which the Islanders battled back from almost certain defeat: “I remember sitting in the penalty box, thinking how it couldn’t be happening. I didn’t know what to make of it. I thought, ‘What if we lose? There’ll be no practice tomorrow. I won’t have anything to do.'”

"We're a team of few words. We show what we're about on the ice, not by talking about it. We're just a little less boisterous or loud than you might expect. We don't get crazy emotionally. If you get too high for a game, you might get too low afterwards. You try to keep things on an even keel."

See Nystrom's quotes from 1979-80

See Nystrom's quotes from 1980-81

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Denis Potvin, Islander defenseman and captain:

On going into Philadelphia with a chance to tie the NHL record for most consecutive wins: "I can't say as a team we were full of confidence going in. Up until tonight, the importance was winning games, not the streak. Tonight, well, there was that fear of losing - we were so afraid of losing this game, but we kept plucking away at it. It's a very satisfying win. Our team deserves this."

See Potvin's quotes from 1980-81

See Potvin's quotes from 1982-83

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Glenn Resch, Colorado goalie:

On the game-winning goal that gave the Islanders an NHL-record 15th straight win: "It went through my legs.... I should have crossed my legs."

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Bill Torrey, Islander general manager:

"With people expecting so much of them but seeming to give so little credit in return, they went out and got it."

See Torrey's quotes from 1979-80

See Torrey's quotes from 1982-83

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Bryan Trottier, Islander forward:

"The confidence we have in one another, and the respect we have for one another, is the base of our success."

On the decisive game five of the Pittsburgh series, in which the Islanders battled back from almost certain defeat: "We came into the (locker) room, and I have to admit I was thinking, 'It's not meant to be.' I was thinking of all the chances we'd had and missed, and it just seemed that it didn't matter how hard we tried, that it just wasn't the Lord's will. But then Al (Arbour) came into the room and he said, 'Hey, guys, we're not going to quit, we're not going to die, we've got too much character for that. We're going to work our butts off, and somehow we're going to come through.' And when Al had finished, I knew he believed that, and so I picked up on it. I had all the confidence in the world after that."

See Trottier's quotes from 1979-80

See Trottier's quotes from 1980-81

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Dave Williams, Vancouver forward:

“We tried to play tough. We banged them around and they stood up to it. They're true champions.”

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