Wednesday, August 15, 2007

The Good and the Bad - Part 1 - New Islanders

This is going to be a recurring theme on this Blog, The Good and the Bad, where we will explore a subject with the top 3 reasons something in the Islanders Universe is either going really good, or really bad. I would like everyone to "voice" their opinion here and let me know which side of the wall you fall on the "Good" or the "Bad" While I share SOME of the opinions below, I by no means agree with ALL of the opinions below, so please no flaming if you disagree with one or all of the points below or in the replies.

The Good and Bad Part 1 - Bill Guerin, Jon Sim, Ruslan Fedotenko, Mike Comrie, and Andy Sutton have signed free agent contracts to play for our New York Islanders replacing Alexei Yashin, Ryan Smyth, Jason Blake, Tom Poti and Viktor Kozlov.

The Good -
1 - The Veterans coming in have the kind of grit, determination, skill and moxie that the media and Islander fans alike have come to call "Nolan type Players". The departure of Blake, Yashin, Poti, & Kozlov was necessary to change the makeup of this team to a team that will never take a night off and squander valuable points at any point of the upcoming season making a playoff spot a forgone conclusion. Tom Poti was so soft in the defensive zone he canceled out his offensive point production by not using his size around the net. Jason Blake while talented was not worth a 5 year contract at his age and sometimes his decisions about what to do with the puck can be considered highly questionable. He will never score close to 40 goals again and his comments before the trading deadline cost him a load of respect with the fans and management.
2 - Andy Sutton will provide the nasty crease clearing presence that plagued the Islanders so much last season when they could not move other players from the front of the net or from invading DiPietro's crease seemingly at will.
3 - The incoming players not only bring worlds of experience, they bring successful playoff experience including Stanley Cup Championships where they featured for their respective teams and were great contributors to their teams success. All of the outgoing players (Save Smyth, but that was one year out of 13) have all had limited to no playoff success.

The Bad -
1 - Replacing Kozlov, Yashin, Blake, and Smyth will be near impossible. The 4 combined for over 100 goals last season. Poti Logged oodles of minutes and despite his defensive short comings provided a sure handed defenseman that will be difficult to replace. The Guerin Smyth argument boils down to who you think is a better player, leader and scorer and you can make a case that Smyth is better in all 3 categories. Yashin & Kozlov despite their reputations contributed greatly to the offense of this team and the Islanders still have a ways to go to replace much less surpass last years offense.
2 - Jason Blake was the heart & Soul of this team and he cannot be replaced.
3 - Top tier free agents like Forsberg, Drury, Gomez, & Smyth are impossible to lure (or keep) to Long Island because of the state of the Coliseum and the impression that the Islanders do not draw as well as other big market teams in the NHL. The players that have signed with the Islanders are all 2nd tier free agents that no one else really wanted badly.

So there it is. I'm sure you agree or disagree with some or all of the points above, feel free to "voice" your opinion and lets discuss!!


kindlyrick said...

I have to say I dont agree with Blake being the heart and soul of the islanders. For such a heart and soul guy, how come he never wore a letter, being the longest tenured islander?

Anonymous said...

Well, good! I like the Islanders!! But those f------ jerseys! How about spending money on some players....players that play HOCKEY! I'm sure the new guys are good and all, but come on, we are second to the Rangiz and maybe even the Devils because we don't spend on anything woth while. I.E. Yashin. I rest my case.