For a man so entrenched in the history of the New York Islanders, it’s easy to understand how certain records Bobby Nystrom holds could slip his mind. For instance, his place on the team’s all-time scoring list.
Prior to a few weeks ago Nystrom occupied 10th in all-time scoring for the Islanders. That was until Josh Bailey surpassed him on Oct. 24 against the Vegas Golden Knights to move into the top-10 in scoring in the franchise’s history and surpassing one of the most heralded players in Islanders history in the process.
“I sent him a real nasty message. I said how could you do that to me,” Bobby Nystrom joked during an appearance on Hockey Night in New York. “The interesting thing is I didn’t even know I was No. 10 on that scoring list. I never really, I don’t know why, I just didn’t know. Josh has always been one of my favorite guys. He’s an unsung hero, he’s very quiet and doesn’t get a lot of press. But you know what, he does the job out there and as we saw last year he really contributed big time in the playoff run.”
During the course of his Islanders career, Nystrom famously scored the game-winning goal to clinch the Islanders their first-ever Stanley Cup in 1980. He recorded 513 points (235 goals, 278 assists) over 900 career games in the NHL.
Bailey has 517 points (163 goals, 354 assists) in 929 games played with the Islanders. He is 25 points away from catching Bob Bourne on the franchise scoring list.
Josh Bailey recently passed Bobby Nystrom on the #Isles all-time scoring list. During this week's On The Line, presented by @TIETECHNOLOGY1, Bobby Nystrom reacted to the feat by the longtime Islander. Catch the full interview here: https://t.co/J8h6v6ywJh pic.twitter.com/b56em1VBHo
— Hockey Night NY (@hockeynightny) November 9, 2021
Bailey has been a bit of a lightning rod among Islanders fans since he was drafted ninth overall in 2008 and immediately made the jump to the NHL. His play has often received criticism from fans over the years, while often being praised by his teammates and coaches.
It’s also what has endeared him to the likes of an Islanders legend like Bobby Nystrom.
“It’s just the way that he plays. He’s not Barzal, he doesn’t play with that kind of flash, but let me tell you what, this kid has got some talent,” Nystrom said. “He really does. He controls the puck well. He shoots well, needless to say, he skates really well, but he just doesn’t get the attention that a lot of other players do. He’s satisfied with that. He just goes out day in and day out and does the job.”
Nevertheless, Bailey surpassing Nystrom made the Islanders alum think back to his playing days. However, in true hockey fashion, Nystrom recalled the team that he had around him and not the individual accomplishments that he had.
“I think more about the team,” Nystrom said. “I had such a great group of teammates and I always say when I scored the Stanley Cup-winning goal it was my to repay the guys on the team for what they did in order to get us there. … I definitely reminisced when that note came out. I thought about the guys and what we accomplished as a team.”