Saturday, August 21, 2010

Garth Snow Stays Cool

Garth Snow has continued to keep his nucleus intact. No knee jerk reactions with the Islanders GM during any of his free agency periods as a GM. And one should compliment him.

Ilya Kovulchuk? Islander fans went bezerk that Garth didn’t make a serious play for the sniper. “I had to do my due diligence” Garth Snow reported to explain his kicking of the tires with the Kovulchuk camp. I like where Garth has positioned the Islanders in the Cap Era. You should to. He has the Islanders Team right where it needs to be. Even without Ilya Kovulchuk.

Yes, it is extremely exciting to think of Ilya Kovalchuk skating down the ice with John Tavares. But, just think in 2 more years when JT is ready for his next contract (currently 3.75 mil cap hit). Kyle Okposo (1.67 mil cap hit) and Josh Bailey (1.72 mil cap hit) will need renewed contracts at the end of this season. So will Matt Moulson (2.45 mil cap hit) and Rob Schremp (.75 mil cap hit). Yes, I said, also Rob Schremp. Remember, the guy who had one of the contenders for the nhls’s goals of the year, scored confidant shoot out goals, and in only 44 rookie games garnered 7 goals, 18 assists, for 25 points.

In the next year, the Islanders Cap Hit will increase substantially. And the extent will depend on Rob Schremp and Matt Moulson. If Moulson has another 30 goal campaign along with improved play from Okposo and Bailey, you are looking at least at an additional 6 million right there in salary for the following season. That will bring the Islanders from the Cap Floor to only 10 million away from the Cap Ceiling. That’s not including Schremp who I believe has a strong possibility of improving his play and earnings by 2011-2012.

The years following, such as in 2013-2014, will include contracts for John Tavares as well as possible additions of Nino Niedereiter, Travis Hamonic, Calvin De Haan, Kirill Petrov, and Kirill Kabanov. Where will all the money be then? Do I dare say Kevin Poulin? I won’t go there because that is way to far in the future. But I am sure everyone by now gets the point. The Islanders will have many players over the next 4-5 years that will hopefully play well and be paid well.

Garth Snow’s decision to hold on overpaying players for “splash” signings proves to me that he is one of the smarter and patient GM’s out there. For the next season or two, he has kept the Islanders cap space in a spot where it could be leveraged for trades, such as accepting a promising player that doesn’t fit under the cap elsewhere (James Wisniewski from the Ducks), locking up free agents as the Islanders get closer to being a contender, and, most importantly, keeping our nucleus intact to become perennial Stanley Cup contenders.

Stay Cool Garth.

Friday, August 20, 2010

2010 - 2011 Season Coming Soon!

Well...I have been procrastinating! It's been a while!

2010-2011 Season is coming soon!

Lot's of things to talk about. Lots of Islander Hockey Cards to look at.


Thursday, January 1, 2009

Streit to the Top

You better look quick because I am not certain how long this will stick for: Mark Streit is now tied for the lead in points for Defenseman in the NHL.
So much talk about Doug Weight and his point per game pace and reaching 1,000 points and might as well start talking about Mark Streit who has quietly built an impressive season as an Islander.
If Doug Weight doesn't recieve an All Star not, it should certainly be Mark Streit to get the nod.
In terms of hockey card investment, being a NY Islander is never helpful. However, being at the top of the NHL defenseman standings doesn't hurt. Can Mark Streit contend for a Norris Trophy? Highly unlikely as there has to be someone else who will have similar point totals on a more successful team but wouldn't it be nice to think in a few years when the Islanders are a better team. (Hopefully)

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Is Dipietro Truly Hurt?

I was one person that was not surprised to see Rick Dipietro stay on Long Island as the New York Islanders headed to Buffalo for their Saturday night game. I was also a person that sat at Nassau Colliseum before the Toronto Maple Leaf game and just thought to myself, "Why on earth is he starting this game?"

Rick Dipietro should have:
1. Gone for a conditioning stint at bridgeport
2. Not played til at least after the New Year

Why rush our Franchise goaltender back into action after so many surgeries to his knees and hips?

It made no sense to me.

And the end result?
Yes, an Islander win. But, also, DP uncomfortably skating out of his crease during a TV timeout in the 3rd period. He was leaning over like he always does when he hurts something. And since that moment, I waited for the news that he was injured.

In moments like that, you hope it's something that can just be shrugged off. DP did finish the game. And let's be honest, would going to Bridgeport have really made that big of a difference to this goaltender who plays his hardest no matter what the situation? If DP truthfully has a groin problem. I'm sure it would've happened whether in Bridgeport or on Long Island.

The biggest issue is whether DP should be playing at all right now. My vote is NO. He should be resting those hips and knees until the Islanders get Tavares or Hedman. But we know he won't.
And on that note, I'm just happy that there has been no report that he needs surgery on his knees, hips, elbow, face, pancreas, appendix or some other part of his body! (But it wouldn't surprise me if he already had another procedure this morning)

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

What I want for the holidays!!!

Well, Happy Holidays everyone!

I am sitting here just thinking about all the hockey cards I would like for the holidays. A couple of cards I can think of right off the bat would be Sidney Crosby and Alexander Ovechkin SPx Rookie Cards. I don't have either of them and the cards cost hundreds of dollars!!!

On a smaller scale, as I mentioned a few blogs ago, I'd also like to get Kyle Okposo and Josh Bailey RC's. Their cards are more affordable, so maybe I'll get them. Islander Rookie Cards for as long as I've been a live are usually the cheapest and easiest cards to get. The most expensive ones over the past few years have been Rick Dipietro. With all of his injuries, his cards have become pretty affordable too.

Well that's all for now.

More blogs later this week.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Welcome back Tambellini! What are we going to do with ya?

(Jeff Tambellini 2006 SPx RC)

For those following closely, Jeff Tambellini's two week conditioning stint at Bridgeport has come to an end. After 2 weeks and 6 AHL games, Jeff Tambellini scored 3 goals, 0 assists, 3 points and 1 shootout goal. Not too shabby. Oh, I WAS talking about the AHL though.

So what are we going to do with this player? (who for the most part has been inconsistant and non productive with the Islanders thus far.) Well, I'm not coach Scott Gordon, but I say play him and play him as much as possible. The method to my thought process madness can be explained in some history lessons below.

Let me start off by talking about the 2003 NHL Entry Draft. It saddens me to look at the list of Bonafide NHL players that were taken in this draft's first round and how none of them are in an Islanders uniform. Let's also remember that the Islanders had 2 cracks at the 2003 NHL Entry Draft. #1 is Robert Nilsson (#15 Overall) via their own pick. #2 is the eventual arrival of Jeff Tambellini (#27 Overall) via trade a few years later from the Los Angeles Kings. Let me just give you the rundown: #1 Marce Andre Fleury #2 Eric Stall #3 Nathan Horton #4 Nikolai Zherdev #5 Thomas Vanek #6 Milan Michalek #7 Ryan Suter #8 Braydon Coburn #9 Dion Phaneuf...the list goes on. All very good NHL players. Just to remind you further: #17 Zach Parise #28 Corey Perry #43 Shea Weber. By now, hopefully you understand the amount of talent available within the first round and a half at the 2003 NHL Entry Draft. There was tons and as of now the Islanders are looking to have bombed in this draft as well as many others ( I haven't heard Dave Chyzowski or Scott Scissons for a long time).

So now that we know the 2003 NHL Entry Draft had tons of talent, let's discuss how the Islanders squandered a bunch of their young talent during the 90's (For the sake of length of this history lesson I'll keep it to the Forward position only):

Martin Straka - born in 1972 - played for the Isles at age 24 - Break out season with Pittsburgh at age 26/27

Todd Bertuzzi - born in 1975 - played for the Isles at age 23 - Break out season with Vancouver at age 25/26 - point per game player at age 26/27

Olli Jokinen - born in 1978 - played for the Isles at age 22 (21 points in 82 games) - Break out season with Florida at age 25/26 - point per game player at age 26/27

Tim Connolly - born in 1981 - played for the Isles at age 20 - riddled with injuries but best season at age 24/25

Taylor Pyatt - born in 1981 - best season as a Pro, so far, at age 25/26

Please remember that Jeff Tambellini was born in 1984. (This season he is 24/25)

The majority of these players were horrible as Islanders because they weren't given the opportunity to develop. The majority of the players mentioned above started getting their acts together around the ages of 25 and 26. I remember Olli Jokinen's season as an islander (at age 22) very well. He always skated up the ice so stiff and clumsily. He scored a measly 21 points in 82 games. (He scored even less at Florida the following season at age 23) Look at what he does now! Jeff Tambellini on the other hand already skates very well and has a very hard shot when he uses it. I am hoping it's a matter of time before all his skills come together at the NHL level.

So what are we going to do with you Jeff Tambellini? I am hoping that Scott Gordon plays him for the remainder of this season and the rest of next to see what happens. Not like the Islanders are scoring goals (or winning) anyways...right? (9 straight losses, shutout last game at Nashville)

Saturday, December 20, 2008

I'll play along: Welcome your 2009-2010 NY Islanders

I'm not sure if you've stopped by If not, you should stop by as Chris Botta, has put up his rendition of the 2009-2010 NY Islanders. For the most part, I agree with his assessment however, I do have a few different thoughts of my own, and I'll even tell you where the missing 2008-2009 Islanders have gone!

Here is my rendition of the 2009-2010 NY Islanders:

Sean Bergenheim - Josh Bailey - Kyle Okposo
Trent Hunter - Franz Nielsen - Jeff Tambellini
Andy Hilbert - 2009 1st Rounder - Blake Comeau
Tim Jackman - Nate Thompson - Richard Park

Freddy Meyer - Chris Campoli
Andy Sutton - Mark Streit
Radek Martinek - 2009 Unrestricted Free Agent/2009 1st Rounder/Solid Prospect Recieved in a trade at the 2009 Trade Deadline

Rick Dipietro
Joey MacDonald

Where I disagree with Chris Botta:
Unless the Islanders pick up additional bonafide prospects that inch out Tambellini and Comeau for roster spots, I can't foresee the Islanders giving up on these two guys. The only concern will be if the two of them end up being exposed to waivers and get plucked. I think that's more of a concern for Tambellini than it is for Comeau. There are too many prospects in the islanders system that would benefit from a year or two in bridgeport. Comeau and Tambellini do not fit into that category. The only consideration is that Tambellini is no longer with the Islanders. Which I think would be a poor decision. He has the speed and he has a great shot when he uses it. Give him more time.

Tim Jackman has handled himself fine in fights. Plus, he actually has been creating scoring chances for himself. There's not many players who can play the little minutes that he does and still is able to create opportunities (if only he would bury a few of them...) and is not a defensive liability (Don't I see him on that penalty kill sometimes?).

The Departed:
Doug Weight - Traded at the 2009 Trade Deadline for a 1st Rounder in 2009 or 2010 + Solid prospect +/- additional darft pick (Anything less would be maddening) (Please read my prior post just below)
Bill Guerin - Traded at the 2009 Trade Deadline for hopefully a 1st or 2nd Rounder in 2009 or 2010 or a solid prospect
Mike Sillinger - Traded at the 2009 Trade Deadline for hopefully at least a mid round draft pick or a half solid prospect
Mike Comrie - Traded at the 2009 Trade Deadline...Hopefully he starts putting up numbers over the next quarter of the season in order for the Islanders to get an early round draft pick or a solid prospect
Brendan Witt - Traded at the 2009 Trade Deadline for an 2009 early round draft pick
Jon Sim - Late round draft pick if we're lucky. Otherwise bought out of his contract.
Bruno Gervais - Still in the Islanders system
Tom Pock - Somewhere in this world

Wouldn't it be nice if the Islanders were to sign Mike Komiserak who is due to be an urestricted free agent? He would be a great replacement for Brendan Witt.

In the end, the Islanders should aim to get several more solid prospects into their system and lose some of their older players. And don't forget to continue to groom the ones that are already in an Islanders uniform.