UNIONDALE, N.Y. -- Back in the day, in the late 1970s and early 1980s, Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum was known to the locals as "Fort Neverlose" because the New York Islanders rarely lost there.
The Islanders hope to channel some of that old-time success when they host the Carolina Hurricanes on Saturday in their final home opener at the Coliseum before the franchise moves to Brooklyn next year.
The Islanders missed the Stanley Cup Playoffs last season despite having a winning record on the road because they were just 13-19-9 in what used to be one of the toughest buildings in the NHL for visiting teams. That includes two losses in as many games to the Hurricanes, who are 11-1-2 in their last 14 visits to Long Island.
"That's something that has to change. We know that," forward Kyle Okposo said Saturday when asked about the Islanders' struggles in their own building. "We have to be better at home. Last year we would have been right there if we had a halfway decent home record."