John Tavares played 669 games in a New York Islanders jersey from 2009-2018, but Thursday night he returns to a familiar territory as the enemy for the first time in his career. Tavares will be sitting on the visitors’ bench at Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum for the first time as the Toronto Maple Leafs pay a visit to Long Island.
The Islanders faithful have made it clear how they feel about their former captain since the day he signed a contract with his hometown Maple Leafs, but Thursday night they got a chance to show Tavares how they really feel with the six-time NHL All-Star in the building.
As soon as the Maple Leafs stepped onto the ice the Islanders fans let Tavares hear the boos and you could hear them loud and clear throughout the arena. They also started ‘we don’t need you’ chants and had signs to match.
You can bet the boo birds will be out all night long whenever Tavares steps on the ice or touches the puck.