July 2008

Monthly Archive

Islanders 2008/2009 3rd Jersey!

Posted by on 28 Jul 2008 | Tagged as: General, News, Off Season

Arron Asham AfroI touched on this in a previous post, although back then it was only speculation and I couldn’t get confirmation from the team at the time. The 3rd jersey will return during the coming season, and the Islanders will be paying homage to the team of yesteryear in bringing back their inaugural jersey.

This jersey is the same jersey that was worn at the Retro night two seasons ago, most notably “the night Asham wore an afro wig”, and can be seen in the photos to the right and below (Asham with Afro wig and Blake Photo, Credits to AP).

Jason Blake Retro

Confirmation, comes from Howard Berger’s blog on Hockeybuzz:

The Isles are going back to their original road jersey from 1972-73, when they joined the NHL along with the Atlanta Flames. It is a royal-blue base, with broad orange and white stripes on the arms and at the bottom of the jersey. The uniform numbers – as they appeared during the club’s inaugural season – are orange with white trim. Player names will also be orange. The Islanders switched to white jersey numbers after their dreadful first year in the league; when they compiled a 12-60-6 record… worst, to that point, in NHL history.

Some would prefer the Islanders to go back to this jersey full time, while I like the retro version – the new styles have grown on me and I feel they would also be acceptable with a few slight changes. Third jerseys are back though and from what I have heard you may only be able to get these at the team stores or at the Coliseum once available.

Monsieur Gervais, Signed!

Posted by on 25 Jul 2008 | Tagged as: Off Season, Signings

Bruno Gervais In what has quickly become a trend, Garth Snow has locked up yet another young cog in the youth movement machine. This time, Defenseman Bruno Gervais has been locked up for the next 3 years at a basement bargain rate (total) of $2.2-Million! According to Greg Logan’s blog, the deal is a one-way contract, which leads me to beleive that UFA Bryan Berard will not be returning next season.

More from Logan’s blog:

Gervais has gone without a goal for two straight regular seasons, although he got one in the playoffs last year at Buffalo. But when healthy, he has been a steady defender with some puck-moving skill.

Injuries limited Gervais to 60 games last season, but he averaged exactly 20 minutes of ice time per game. With the addition of free-agent Mark Streit, there is some question about how Gervais’ role on the third pairing might be affected. At the moment, it appears he might be the seventh defenseman, which could mean some time in the press box. But as the Islanders learned last season, you can’t have enough defensemen. They used 12 different defensemen last season because of injuries.

Under the circumstances, the deal Gervais received looks fair for everyone concerned. His first-year salary equals the qualifying offer of $522,500. He will earn $800,000 and $900,000 in the next two seasons.

Gervais turns 24 a week before the regular season begins on Oct. 10, and when this contract is up, he will have one more year until he reaches unrestricted free agency. His signing means that Snow most likely is done adding players to the NHL roster at least until training camp. All that’s left now is the choice of a coach

And from the Islanders official statement:

The New York Islanders and defenseman Bruno Gervais have agreed to terms on a three-year, one-way contract worth $2.2225 million. The deal will keep him under contract through the 2010-11 season. The Islanders now have all of their potential restricted free agents under contract for the upcoming 2008-09 season.

In 60 games last season with the Islanders, Gervais recorded 13 assists and points while averaging 20:00 minutes of ice time. The 23-year-old Quebec native was also honored this past spring as the Long Island Professional Athlete of the Year by the Nassau County Sports Commission.

“Bruno is a homegrown talent and has been developing in our system for a few years,” said Islanders General Manager Garth Snow. “He’s a high character player and person and is someone who is great in the Long Island community. We’re very excited to have him on board for the next three years.”

Gervais has played in 138 career NHL games over the course of three seasons with the Islanders and has scored three goals with 23 assists for 26 points. In five playoff games in 2007, Gervais scored a goal with an assist for two points in an Eastern Conference Quarterfinal series against Buffalo.

Gervais also played for the Islanders’ American Hockey League affiliate Bridgeport Sound Tigers in 2004-05 and parts of 2005-06. Despite playing in only 55 games with Bridgeport in 2005-06, Gervais finished second among league defensemen in goals scored with 16.

Gervais was originally drafted by the Islanders in the sixth round (182nd overall) of the 2003 NHL Entry Draft.

Garth Snow on the signing of Gervais with iTV

In other news, a story in tomorrow’s Newsday claims that former Tampa Bay Lightning coach John Tortorella will be interviewing for the Islanders head coaching position on Sunday.

Lastly, I have made some site optimizations that have dramatically increased the way the site loads and performs. This should make the viewing experience a bit better and cut down on page load times. If anyone notices anything out of the ordinary (aside from the random image being temporarily broken the past several days – fixed it tonight) please contact me and I will get it fixed straight away.

Nielsen Signed!

Posted by on 18 Jul 2008 | Tagged as: Off Season, Signings

Franz Nielsen The Islanders have signed Franz Nielsen to a four year deal worth $2.1-Million, per Greg Logan’s blog.

This is another great move by Garth in locking up yet another young forward. Nielsen should help in all offensive situations as he is a smart and creative player, he has shown he can be used during the shootout and help at the center position.

With expanded time on the ice, Nielsen could be a steal at the contract given.

Per the Islanders release (Hey, a week later is better than never at all – in reference to this post being made almost a week ago):

The New York Islanders have agreed to a four-year contract with center Frans Nielsen worth $2.1 million. The one-way contract will average $525,000 per year. Nielsen became the first Danish-born and raised citizen to play in the NHL during the 2006-07 season.

“We’re excited to have Frans locked up for the next four years,” said Islanders General Manager Garth Snow. “We know he is going to come to training camp in great shape and ready to compete for his spot on the team.”

Nielsen split last season between the Islanders and the Bridgeport Sound Tigers of the American Hockey League. In 16 games with the Islanders, Nielsen scored two goals with one assist for three points. With Bridgeport, Nielsen was the team’s fourth leading scorer despite playing in only 48 games. He scored ten goals with 28 assists for 38 points.

Nielsen made his NHL debut on January 6, 2007. In 31 career NHL games, Nielsen has scored three goals with two assists for five points. Nielsen was originally drafted by the Islanders in the third round (87th overall) of the 2002 NHL Entry Draft.

Bergenheim Avoids Arbitration, Tambellini Signed!

Posted by on 16 Jul 2008 | Tagged as: News, Off Season, Signings

Sean BergenheimIslanders forward Sean Bergenheim has singed a two year deal according to Greg Logan’s Blog.

One might think that this is simply Garth Snow tidying up some lose ends, but isn’t it a little bit suspect that he locks up two important pieces in terms of the “youth movement” and rebuild days after Nolan’s departure? What’s also great is that Bergenheim and his new agent progressed quickly in talks with the Islanders. Both contracts are great values and the length allows both players the chance to show the club, should they improve – they could be worth much more in the long term.

Per the Islanders release:

The New York Islanders and forward Sean Bergenheim have agreed to a two-year contract worth $1.725 million. The energetic forward will earn $800,000 in 2008-09 and $925,000 in 2009-10. Bergenheim has also voluntarily made a large donation to the Islanders Inspire.

“We’re very happy to have Sean locked up for two years,” said Islanders General Manager Garth Snow. “He’s another young player who we’re excited to see at training camp and competing.”

Last season, Bergenheim played in 78 games with the Islanders and scored ten goals with 12 assists for 22 points. Bergenheim scored eight of his ten goals in the final 34 games of the season. He also finished second on the Islanders in hits with 138. Bergenheim has played in 124 career NHL games over the course of three seasons and in that time has scored 15 goals with 18 assists for 33 points.

Bergenheim was originally drafted by the Islanders in the first round (22nd overall) of the 2002 NHL Entry Draft.

This on the heals of Jeff Tambellini being locked up two more years, taking less than his qualifiying offer in exchange for a one-way contract.

Per the Islanders release on Tambellini:

The New York Islanders and forward Jeff Tambellini have agreed to a two-year, one-way contract worth a total of $1.175 million. The contract will pay him $550,000 in 2008-09 and $625,000 in 2009-10.

Tambellini split his season between the Islanders and the Bridgeport Sound Tigers of the American Hockey League last season.

“We’re extremely happy that we have Jeff as a member of the Islanders organization for the next two years,” said Islanders General Manager Garth Snow. “We know that Jeff will come to training camp in shape and ready to compete in September and we look forward to it.”

In 31 games with the Islanders in 2007-08, Tambellini scored a goal with three assists for four points. With Bridgeport, Tambellini led the Sound Tigers with 38 goals and 38 assists for 76 points in 57 games and set a new team record for points scored. The two-time AHL All-Star, who finished tied for second in goals scored in the AHL last season, has played in a total of 79 NHL games and has scored four goals with 13 assists for 17 points.

Also signed were forwards Jeremy Colliton and Ben Walter who each agreed to their two-way qualifying offers.

Nolan Fallout: Overreaction?

Posted by on 15 Jul 2008 | Tagged as: News, Off Season

Ted NolanThese days, it seems no matter what the Islanders do there is a bit of overreaction involved. Be it the media, analysts, fans, or bloggers; the reactions are similar. As a life long fan of this franchise, it’s easy to understand why fans can get a little ornery from time to time, but what I refuse to accept is the way the media is so quick to place everything in a negative light or post opinionated drivel that is only meant to get a rise out of an already testy fan base.

The media holds somewhat of a responsibility to keep fans educated, for they are a connection to the inside of a sports organization – flies on the wall if you will. They report news on injuries and transactions to firings and promotions, and of course – recapping games. What makes me angry is when these same journalists, mostly analysts from outside the reach of local papers try to spin their web of hate towards the organization. Sure, the Islanders have been an easy target over the years – but the story is old and it’s time to move on. Especially when there are other organizations in the NHL that also make questionable decisions. Where is the focus on these teams? What’s fair is fair, especially when some may even reside in Canadian markets. Share the hatred!

I understand that any organization with the storied history the Islanders have will always be compared to the glory days, even more so when it really was run like a circus for a short period. The team has gone through numerous owners, some fraudulent and others as cheap as a piece of bazooka. You want to focus on coaches? Fine. Over the past 10 years, the Islanders have had several – eight to be exact (Mike Milbury, Rick Bowness, Butch Goring, Bill Stewart, Peter Laviolette, Steve Stirling, Brad Shaw and Ted Nolan). For the majority of the coaches listed, you can blame talentless rosters and Mike Milbury as a cause. Charles Wang, who purchased the franchise in 2000, was at the helm for four firings, with Milbury dropping the axe on three (Including himself prior to 2000 – twice).

What does all this mean you ask? It means that Garth Snow isn’t at fault for any coaching changes that have happened before yesterday, July 14th, 2008. In fact, Wallace Matthews of Newsday says yesterday may be the actual beginning of Snow’s GM career (something I don’t fully agree with):

The firing of Ted Nolan yesterday, a mercy killing if ever there was one, signals the beginning of the Garth Snow era and the end, if Snow is to be believed, of the hockey-by-committee that the Islanders have practiced – and failed dismally at – in the past eight seasons.

I have a feeling that the committee concept was abandoned sometime over the past year once Snow got a feeling for the GM role. He went into the trade deadline last season with a plan and once again in June for the NHL Entry Draft in Ottawa – so he has really been THE GM longer than many speculate.

Garth Snow, up until this point has begun to prove that he is a competent GM with a vision that many Islanders fans have shared over the course of the past decade. To try to minimize any positivity that the firing of Nolan has caused – just isn’t fair. In support of this statement, I offer the following.

Ted Nolan, sometime during the 2007/2008 season realized that the Islanders were out of contention, bruised, battered and likely going with youth from there on out. He maybe even felt a little scorned, betrayed even – that his protege Chris Simon was shipped out of town after two embarrassing incidents. I witnessed with my own eyes a man wrought with uncertainty and confusion walk down the runway and into an empty Coliseum on trade deadline day – as if to ponder the future of the team, and in retrospect his future.

Maybe it was that cold day back in February that Ted Nolan decided he could not bunker down and take the bruises of a rebuild. Maybe he wanted to show the league that he could coach a team of “lunch pail” players and get blood from stone. Who knows? What we do know, is that this same strong headed individual known for being a players coach and master motivator, began to lose his locker room. We also witnessed a man buckle under pressure when questioned by the media, it may not have been glaringly obvious – but he seemingly called out management and was defiant in his decision making. Somewhere along the line, Ted Nolan decided he was too good for a rebuild.

If this was any other team and Nolan was so defiant and outspoken in the media, he would be fired and there wouldn’t be much mud-slinging. But because this is the Islanders – it’s a free for all.

Some fans have claimed that Ted Nolan was the only bright spot and credibility this franchise has had the past two years. Other than squeaking into the playoffs and getting the team to play beyond what they were supposed to, what has Nolan done in his career outside of two post season appearances (winning one round) and the Jack Adams? Not enough to say Ted Nolan was any of those things above, he needs a few more years in order to reach credible status in my eyes. If you check out the poll on Newsday’s site, you will see I am in the minority with my line of thinking. Islanders Army also touches on this poll – which is worth a look.

The Focus on Blame

There are a ton of varying opinions on the subject of blame regarding Nolan’s dismissal, divorce or “mutual agreement” – whatever you want to call the situation. Two players in the blame game are James Mirtle who posts twice on this subject and Greg Wyshynski (aka Puck Daddy).

Mirtle takes the high road and places blame on both parties:

On Ted Nolan:

“Some of his, shall we say, outbursts in the press came awfully close to questioning his GM’s authority, and that’s not going to fly in any organization.”

On Garth Snow:

The biggest indication that this was an ill-timed decision? The Islanders’ annual five-day rookie camp started on the very day the head coach was fired.

Nolan may have had to go, but it makes quite a bit more sense to fire him earlier in the off-season, if only so the organization doesn’t miss out on the best candidates to replace him.

In support of the timing issue, which I do admit was a tad on the bad side – I told Mirtle that last year Nolan wasn’t really involved with prospect camp and chose to observe, take notes and chat with fans. Bryan Trottier is really the man in charge of the prospect camp – so firing Nolan on the day camp starts shouldn’t have been the biggest issue. I agreed, that with all the negative press regarding the Snow-Nolan relationship it should have been taken care of before it progressed to the point it did. However, I still place the blame on Ted Nolan.

Greg Wyshynski talks about a Larry Brooks article in the NY Post (the man I love to hate) and the varying opinion in Islanders country.

The Islanders TOI numbers skew towards “Nolan-type players” and away from the future of the franchise, in what was a lost season. All due respect to Miroslav Satan, but on a team that’s 15 points out of the postseason there’s no reason why his TOI (18:19) should dramatically eclipse that of Jeff Tambellini (10:25, 31 games), Blake Comeau (11:40, 51 games) and Sean Bergenheim (11:15, 78 games). They’re the future; he was a lame duck.

Without question, Miroslav Satan should not have been given as much ice time, specifically on the power play playing the point given his off season and his nagging knee injury. What really is worth another mention, is the reluctance of Nolan to move away from his 1-3-1 defensive system later in the season. Given the team was out of playoff contention and suffering miserably with defensive injuries, he should have allowed the younger players a chance to play a more offensive style of play in order to get a feeling for the NHL, which is my biggest gripe.

Greg Logan has done an outstanding job covering all the latest on Ted Nolan’s departure, he has had several articles in Newsday and on his blog. One of the biggest pieces of news slipped into any of these is the surprising revelation that Nolan was given permission to interview with other teams following the end of the season.

When the season ended, Nolan’s job status appeared uncertain. With several NHL head-coaching jobs open, a league source said, the Islanders gave Nolan written permission to interview with other teams. But he did not receive an offer.

Regarding the bold statement in the quote above, I have a funny feeling that there may not be another chance for Ted Nolan in the NHL after twice having similar problems with his GM.

Looking forward, I liken this to a new beginning and a fresh start moving into a rebuilding year. The Islanders are ripe with young talent and the right amount of veteran presence to make things competitive. They will show the kids the ropes and make them better NHL players. Hopefully, whomever the Islanders tap into for a head coach will share the vision, install the correct systems and restore the glory to this scarred franchise. I know there are a bunch out there who are not looking forward to this season and between the draft and now the removal of Nolan may not want to come out and watch, but in order for this franchise to turn around – it needs all the support it can. This move was necessary and not wrought with that of peanut shells and three rings. I promise.

Ted Nolan Not Returning

Posted by on 14 Jul 2008 | Tagged as: News, Off Season

Ted NolanOver the past several months, there have been rumblings that Garth Snow and Ted Nolan were not seeing eye to eye on several things regarding the team. Greg Logan has posted numerous articles and his most recent spoke of Nolan having no input during the draft. Today, the team made it official by announcing that Ted Nolan will not be returning for the 2008/2009 season.

From what we have been told, it was a “mutual agreement”.

Per the Islanders Release:

New York Islanders General Manager Garth Snow announced today that Ted Nolan will not return next season as the team’s head coach. Nolan had one season remaining on his contract.

“Ted has helped us achieve some success over the last two seasons, however it has become clear that we have philosophical differences and have decided together to part ways,” said Snow. “Since last season and continuing into the summer, I have realized we do not share the same philosophies. I would like to thank Ted for his two years with the team and wish him the best.

“I have a list of several qualified candidates. After a thorough process, we will hire the very best coach to lead the Islanders on the ice.”

Added Nolan: “While I am disappointed I will not be coaching the Islanders next season, there have been philosophical differences and we’ve agreed it’s a good time for me to move on. I want to thank the Islanders organization for giving me a chance to coach in the NHL again. I have tremendous respect for what the team is trying to do and I wish them well.”

With all the things the Islanders have gone through, I would have loved to see Nolan finish out his contract. We don’t know exactly how bad things were between the team and the coach – but when he would throw comments out there about “Playing with what you’ve got” and “Do the best you can” you know things aren’t perfect. Nolan also had a strong reluctance to play youth last season when it was apparent the Isles were out of contention and would rarely change the style of play from his defensive system – so this move may actually allow the Islanders to implement a style of play more successful to the personnel that they have available.

This organization is perceived badly enough around the league, this situation won’t help – although I can only hope that its somewhat acceptable if your coach and GM do not see eye-to-eye. There are several viable coaching choices that have become available (as they do each season) – the next part of this adventure is picking someone who will accept a rebuild and work out all the kinks when it comes to bringing the kids along.

Logan asked Snow what took him so long in making his decision, and had this to say in today’s Newsday article:

“That’s a fair question. This has been a difficult decision for both Ted and myself, especially for me because of Charles Wang’s desire to give Ted the opportunity to coach in the NHL and because of his loyalty to those he hires.

“I understand there could be some criticism, and if there is, it can fall on me. What I can tell you is there was a process. I spoke with Ted regularly following the season and when the draft and free agency ended. Our strong belief about our philosophical differences led me to believe, and Ted as well, that we needed to part ways. I know this decision will be best for not only the team and our fans, but for Ted as well.”

Three choices that Greg Logan speaks of today in Newsday are Paul Maurice, John Tortorella and Bob Hartley. Logan goes on to talk about a previous connection with Snow and Hartley and says this may be a relationship to watch. Logan also writes that executive director of player development Bryan Trottier, Commentator Butch Goring or Bridgeport coach Jack Capuano are not in the running to take over the head coach position.

Isles Extend Witt!

Posted by on 08 Jul 2008 | Tagged as: News, Signings

Brendan WittEagle eyes caught a fast one – the Islanders have extended defenseman Brendan Witt to a two-year contract extension. Terms were not announced just yet, but I am working on it.

Per TSN’s signings tracker:

6:37PM New York Islanders sign defenceman Brendan Witt to a contract extension.

This is GREAT news for the Islanders as Witt was in the final year of his contract and there was speculation as to what would eventually happen. Witt has been rock solid on the back line being a leader, bringing strength, antagonistic and occasionally rough play for the Islanders. This was a great signing!

Update: I am hearing it is for a two-year extension. More to follow.

Greg Logan confirms it is a two-year deal worth $6-Million in his blog!

Official Islanders statement:

The New York Islanders have signed alternate captain Brendan Witt to a two-year contract extension worth $6.0 million. That means the fan-favorite defenseman is under contract through the 2010-2011 season.

“Over the last two seasons, Brendan has been a warrior for us on the ice and a great leader off the ice,” said Islanders General Manager Garth Snow. “We’re thrilled to keep him in an Islanders uniform.”

Added Witt: “My family and I are excited to stay on Long Island for the next three years. We love the community and our fans, and I couldn’t be happier. I want to thank the Islanders organization and the fans for making Long Island our home.”

In his two years with the Islanders, Witt has played in 140 games and has scored three goals with 18 assists for 21 points and a +6 plus/minus rating. More importantly, Witt has been a thorn in the side of some of the top NHL forwards as he is often assigned the role of shutting down the opponent’s top lines.

Originally drafted by Washington in first round (11th overall) in the 1993 NHL Entry Draft, Witt has played a total of 12 seasons in the NHL. In 783 games with Washington, Nashville and the Islanders, Witt has scored a total of 23 goals with 84 assists for 107 points and 1,285 penalty minutes.

Witt was originally signed by the Islanders in July of 2006 to a three-year contract, which was set to expire after the 2008-09 season.

As I mentioned earlier, this was a KEY signing and has really solidified our defensive corps for the foreseeable future. With players like Sutton, Martinek, Streit and now Witt signed for multiple years – there won’t be much changing on the blueline so it means increased chemistry and solidarity – at least with the top two defensive pairings. I think Snow went way above and beyond with this move, another great job!

One Last Avery Cheapshot!

Posted by on 04 Jul 2008 | Tagged as: General, News, Off Season

Sean Avery - VogueKeeping up with the rumor theme, Sean Avery – now of the Dallas Stars thanks to his 4-year $15.5-Million dollar deal, has never really been the kindest player to the New York Islanders. He has “allegedly” headhunted DiPietro after a concussion, he has spit water at the Ice Girls, speared Brendan Witt, and mouthed off among other cheap shots during the course of his time with the Rangers. This parting shot, sort of makes me chuckle a little bit though and makes me wonder how much he must have been annoyed that the Islanders never even called him.

In an interview with the National Post, Avery claims the Islanders should have reached out to him with an offer for his “services”. It seems someone is a little bitter about being taken away from The Big Apple and the Fashion District.

Avery touched upon high fashion, Russian bathtubs, break-up speeches and a love for New York’s Lower East Side. He was saying goodbye, but not farewell, to Manhattan after signing a four-year US$15.5-million deal with the Stars. In parting, Avery’s most inflammatory barb was a muted blast at the Rangers’ archrivals in New York.

“If they were smart,” Avery said of the Islanders. “They probably would have tried to sign me.”

The Islanders did not even bid for Avery’s services, and the Rangers backed away from the big money the super-pest was going to bring on the open market, despite the fact the team was 33-14-10 with him in the lineup last season and 9-13-3 without.

“I am sitting in a Russian bathtub in the Lower East Side right now,” Avery said. “I spent about a year and a half in New York, and I think it is always a place I am going to come back to live. It’s home.”

Sean, that’s what happens when you wear out your welcome somewhere – you don’t get re-signed or offered a contract by the other local teams. He also fails to mention that Islander management DESPISES him as a player. Oh well – such is life, at least he gave me something else to write about tonight.

Islanders Want Boyle?

Posted by on 03 Jul 2008 | Tagged as: Off Season, Rumors, Trades

Speculation (read: rumors) has been running rampant the past several days that the Tampa Bay Lightning are looking to purge themselves of Dan Boyle’s six-year $40-million dollar contact in order to reach a self imposed spending limit. The problem with this grand master plan is that Boyle was given a no trade clause in his extension prior to last years trade deadline. There have been numerous teams rumored asking about the services of Boyle, you guessed it – the Islanders are said to be in the mix.

Normally, I would take whatever I read on the various message boards or rumor websites with a grain of salt – but the websites and writers I respect most are all reporting the same things. Greg Logan from Newsday wrote about it in a story for Friday’s paper and in his blog, Spector mentions the Islanders in his Boyle updates, and Kuklas Korner also mentions the Islanders with Boyle. What makes things even more interesting, is that the Islanders are even mentioned in a local Tampa newspaper blog as well. All signs point to this being a confirmed interest in Boyle.

While Boyle may not fit into what the Islanders are trying to accomplish perfectly, he is another offensive defenseman – and a fairly solid defender. Tampa is looking to shed salary, so this is another example of how the Islanders cap-space has become even more valuable. The Lightning are trading from a position of weakness, so the Islanders could snatch Boyle up for a mid-level prospect and a 2nd or 3rd round draft pick. To me, this would be a no brainer because it would solidify the defensive corps and you can then shift your focus on adding a top-six forward to jump start the offense. Boyle doesn’t make the Isles any more of a contender than they would be without him, but he definately makes them a solid team defensively. This is something that needs to be watched closely over the next coming days, that is for sure.

July 4th Update

Apparently San Jose has traded for Dan Boyle and completely overpayed in my eyes: Dan Boyle and Brad Lukowich to San Jose for Matt Carle, Ty Wishart, a 1st and a 4th

Chris Botta claims that the Islanders did more than just “kick the tires” in his blog – they very much wanted Boyle – but I bet the first round pick made Snow cringe and terminate any talks of a trade. Good on ya Garth!

Depth Signings!

Posted by on 03 Jul 2008 | Tagged as: Free Agency, Signings, Sound Tigers

Between yesterday and today, the Islanders have stocked the farm system once again by signing a whole handful of players to two-way contracts, including a goaltender who allegedly broke all of Dubielewicz’s records at the University of Denver. In no particular order they have signed Mike Iggulden, Kurtis McLean, Chris Lee, Mitch Fritz, goaltender Peter Mannino, and Brett Skinner.

You can read about the signings at the Bridgeport Sound Tigers website, I don’t claim to be an expert at AHL players – that is Tom Liodice’s gig (but he is on vacation).

The cupboard, is no longer bear.

The Islanders have also posted a nice little article on 6 of the recent signings, you can check it out on the teams website.

Doug Weight Signed!

Posted by on 02 Jul 2008 | Tagged as: Free Agency, Signings

Botta claims in his blog deal is done, one year deal.

More in a bit

Confirmed! Check out the Islanders Website!

Once again I ran out to take care of something and signings break! We all knew this was coming, it was rumored to happen back at the trade deadline when talk of a Guerin/Weight reunion was spoken about. Doug Weight is another great veteran presence at the center position who can dish the puck off and position his wingers correctly. His experience and skill is invaluable to the younger players and this is another good signing for Garth.

Greg Logan has the breakdown of the contract on his blog, but it appears to be a one year deal worth $1.74-million with the opportunity to reach $4.3-million in performance bonuses. I am also not the only one speaking the praises of signing Weight, check out Chris Botta’s blog and while your at it fellow Blog Boxer Okposo Net.

Per the Islanders official statement:

The New York Islanders have agreed to a one-year contract with four-time NHL All-Star center Doug Weight. A Stanley Cup champion with Carolina in 2005-06 and Olympic Silver Medalist with the United States in 2002, Weight brings a total of 1,131 NHL games to the Islanders along with 265 career goals and 704 assists for 969 points in 16 NHL seasons.

“Bringing Doug aboard was a priority for us. He not only brings a wealth of NHL games and experience with him, but he’s the type of player we want our younger players to learn from,” said Islanders General Manager Garth Snow.

Last season, Weight split his time between St. Louis and Anaheim and scored a total of ten goals with 15 assists for 25 points in 67 games. The 37-year old is among the NHL’s all-time active leaders in assists and points, ranking eighth with 704 assists and twelfth with 969 points. Weight is also among the all-time United States-born leaders, ranking fifth in assists and eighth in points.

Weight has played on the United States Olympic Team twice, in 1998 and 2002, and also represented the United States in the World Cup of Hockey in 1996 and 2004.

A native of Warren, Michigan, Weight played collegiate hockey for two years with Lake Superior State University from 1989 to 1991. After the 1990-91 season, Weight was named to the CCHA First All-Star Team and the NCAA’s West Second All-American Team.

Ken Morrow on the signing of Doug Weight on Islanders TV:

Goaltender Yann Danis Signed!

Posted by on 02 Jul 2008 | Tagged as: Free Agency, Signings

In a confusing bit of news, it appears the Islanders have signed former Canadiens goaltender Yann Denis. No official word, but a sharp eyed poster on Islandermania spotted him on the players page.

Nothing more than a depth signing I am sure, but some theorize he will make things harder on Joey MacDonald now. We shall see.

More as it develops.


Per the New York Islanders website:

The New York Islanders have signed goaltender Yann Danis to a one-year, two-way contract. A former NCAA All-American with Brown University, Danis has a record of 81-67-18 in 176 career AHL games with a 2.78 goals against average and a .908 save percentage.

Following a standout four-year career at Brown University, Danis signed as an undrafted free agent with Montreal in March of 2004. In his time with the Canadiens’ organization, Danis played in six games with Montreal and had a record of 3-2-0 with a 2.69 goals against average and a save percentage of .908. Danis, a native of Québec, Canada spent the majority of the last five seasons with the Hamilton Bulldogs of the American Hockey League.

During his time at Brown, Danis played in 100 games and finished with a record of 43- 43-12. He also had 13 shutouts to go along with a goals against average of 2.19 and a save percentage of .930. Danis won several colligate honors, including being named as an NCAA All-American in 2003-04 and received All-Conference honors in 2001-02, 2002-03 and 2003-04.

Thanks to CMB for the heads-up!

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