For the New York Islanders it seems they are learning the lesson that you get what you pay for. Even though I have taken some great delight in ripping this organization for getting so many things wrong, I really think we need to give General Manager Garth Snow a little credit here. He offered a 100 million dollar contract to Ilya Kovalchuk. He was also able to convince the brain trust over that to make significant offers to Dan Hambuls and Paul Martin. At this point they are going to have to overpay to land big time talent. We have seen other pro sports team use this strategy to a lot of success, but it is not an overnight transition.
Head Coach Scott Gordon has on overall record of 60-84-20 over the last three years, and the Islanders have finished last in their division the last two seasons. That probably means his job is on the line even though the losing may not be all his fault. This team feels like they are heading in the right direction, but he must tweak his aggressive fore checking system for the lack of quality on the Islanders blue line.
This team’s breakout candidate is second line center Frans Nielsen. He ended up with the fifth best Islander point total last season, and could easily grab 50 points this year if he can get more time on the power play units. However the overall view of this team seems to be one that is treading water until they can get a new arena built, and have a massive infusion of talent.
Key Additions- D Mark Eaton, D Milan Jurcina, C Zenon Konopka, RW PA Parenteau, and D James Wisniewski
Key Subtractions- LW Jeff Tambellini, RW Tim Jackman, and G Martin Biron