This sounds like another sequel to Friday the 13th the Final Chapter Part II. I have had a pretty good response to Parts I and II of the Good and the bad so here it goes for Part III.
Confused? Ok then Lets move on.. There are a lot of new faces on the Islanders for this season. We have covered the free agent signings of Fedotenko, Comrie, Guerin, Sutton and Sim. Lets switch our attention to another group of new Islanders who could contribute greatly to the team's success or failure this season. They are - Sean Bergenheim, Jeff Tambellini, Bryan Berard, and Josef Vasicek.
THE BAD -
1) To much is being heaped on these players shoulders. We can't expect Bergenheim and Tambellini, who as rookies have to prove they can even make in in the NHL to begin with, much less contribute to a teams success. Berard is talented but injury prone and has been labeled with the "s" word. Vasicek is big, but there is a reason Carolina let him go.
2) With such a large turnaround in player personnel, it could be months before the team gels, if they gel at all. By then the playoffs will be out of reach.
3) Past the 1st line, this team is just not going to score enough goals. These 4 will only help a little; suiting them up is akin to putting a band aid on a gun shot wound.
THE GOOD -
1) Berard can still move the puck as he is still only 30. When he was healthy the last 3 seasons, as he appears to be now he produces points and will improve the power play, which is GREATLY needed. If this team wants to win games, the power play is going to have to be top 7 or 8 in the NHL.
2) Teams cannot succeed without injections of youth. That being said, that youth has to be talented which Vasicek, Bergenheim and Tambellini certainly are. Vasicek wants to prove the Canes wrong for letting him go, and Tambellini and Bergenheim are hungry to prove that they belong and can contribute to a winner.
3) The player personnel turnaround was necessary to change the culture of this team. Snow and company changed the mindset that they cannot succeed in the playoffs and that making 8th place is good enough and stopped the notion that no free agents will sign on the Island. The players that have gone will take their long standing attitudes and locker room problems with them and in their place is a younger, leaner team that will challenge their opponents on a nightly basis, and be a blast to watch this year.
Let me know what points you do or do not agree with. All opinions are welcome!! I will see you guys at the Coliseum on Saturday. Com on by Section 214 and say hello!