You know it’s a sign of something good when Steve Staios is breaking in shorthanded.
All kidding aside, New York was the better team, had the extra step, outworked the Pens, and earned their sweep of the home and home.
They have had success at home vs Pittsburgh before this season.
Not sure what to make of Bailey but a remarkable night to register five points. Of course for this blog he should play his natural position of center. The concept of him being a winger has been tried many times without success, but that’s not for today.
Congratulations to Josh Bailey.
Nielsen-Okposo played with Grabner the entire second half of last season.
Congratulations to Kyle Okposo for a new career high in goals.
That was an incredible effort by Pandolfo short-handed to get the puck to Bailey.
When a dominating team hits the wall like Pittsburgh has, they are going to lose some games, and make some mistakes trying to do more, despite this they still almost came all the way back.
The Pens short-handed play was good, despite the goal they allowed off their defense.
Montoya’s surprising me a little, he looked unplayable for a long time (even before injuries) but now he seems to have settled down which does not happen in a vacuum.
The shift Reasoner came off the bench and scored his first, like in Florida the team had a dominating shift, you could see the Isles were beating the Pens to the net.. Okposo found the quality spot, the first line did not finish but generated chances, Grabner, Niederreiter and Martin had chances.
Streit is just playing like he was told go play offense for a while now, he got caught in Pittsburgh when someone did not cover well, but he has to do it.
Isles took some big hits to clear some pucks on defense.
Overall this suggests nothing new, the Isles have been a team between five hundred and six under the entire season. This is no carryover to next season if there is one.
Now we see what happens with Bridgeport, who need Ullstrom (plus Cizikas) and what happens when Boston/Ottawa visit over the weekend.
Those teams have not hit the wall the Pens have, they will be much tougher.
For this day congratulations to the New York Islanders.
New York is five points clear of the 27th place team. Toronto is playing the kind of hockey where they may well not win another game, anything can happen.
Beating Winnipeg/Columbus or even better having success against Boston/Ottawa/New Jersey could place the Isles around the 8th or 9th team from 30th spot.
So do we double-down after Saturday, again beating up an Islander team that won, despite giving up a season low in shots against, plus closing out the game very well?
With respect to PA Parenteau, who made an excellent rush, or Moulson to give the Isles the 3-2 lead with his usual great work in front, it was far from a good team effort against a tired club that lost 8-0 the night before.
I watched the 2010-11 New York Islanders play out the second half and came away convinced that very hard working team was something built to last, despite the late season wave of continued injuries before they finally fell back.
I see nothing happening here aside from the natural progression of individuals, or anything positive on a team level that will carry over to 2012-13.
The Isles breakdowns were noticeable, the Leafs having the extra man around the pucks in the walls/corners stood out the most even when they did not get shots.
Both New York goals before Moulson scored illustrate where I’m going.
Center Josh Bailey returned from injury and was placed on right wing, where he scored some recent goals and many started forgetting he is a center. Now the last two games he’s on left wing where he started as a rookie?
Despite Tavares feeding Bailey for a nice finish, how is this good for him moving forward?
David Ullstrom broke in as a center. This blog asked earlier why is he coming up to play left wing? We were told he was switched there by Bridgeport, the Isles played him as a left wing before his concussion.
Now the last few games Ullstrom is playing right wing which begs the question why? Who cares that Grabner made a nice poke check and he tapped in his centering pass.
That is not progress for Ullstrom, just as it was not progress to move Matt Martin to right wing for a few shifts recently.
I fail to understand this kind of coaching, many other former Islander coaches played forwards on off-wing, it never worked.
It’s not a new NHL concept or only about the Islanders.
Bottom line this club has to get better on the walls, they have to get more numbers around the puck and work as a unit. Moving players off their natural position and switching them around usually brings a franchise nothing but confused players and a team that does not read or react well.
That means many games you are chasing the puck, or outnumbered.
When you are small, slow, not very physical, with a low scoring defense it’s just another obstacle for these kids.
It’s kind of the same philosophy you use with Hamonic-MacDonald, put them together and leave them alone unless one get’s hurt, don’t make one play the opposite side.
Sorry folks, that is what stood out most in the 5-2 win.
Okposo worked hard early, when he got hurt he did seem to fade. When Tavares hit the boards hard making his usual brilliant move it made me wonder should he be playing any more twenty minute games at this age?
The fourth line goals against were on breakdowns, to put that on one player would not be fair but it begs the question why not put Reasoner in the stands if simply to balance the forward lines?
Despite the late pp goal, it did not look good watching Streit skate right into two Leafs in front of his own net.
Bridgeport plays Wednesday.
He did play briefly under Jack Capuano in Bridgeport here and no doubt worked under Capuano in summer or training camps.
The point is Capuano and Okposo were familiar with one another when he returned from his shoulder injury in January 2011.
Kyle Okposo is a young player, he’s had success and shown he has first line potential.
Jack Capuano is in a tough spot here. He’s benched Okposo, put him on the top line where a pick of his potential should thrive with Tavares, however now again is off that line for Parenteau.
Okposo’s been used with Nielsen most of the time since his return in 2011, that produced five goals, but did not get a lot of notice because of Grabner’s success on that line combined with his injury.
Seems the only thing that brought immediate improvement for a short-time was Okposo’s benching this season, and not just the two quick goals against the Flyers, but his dive to the net returned.
Of course the numbers are important, however he’s simply not generating chances, skating well, and visible in games for all the wrong reasons.
There are no easy answer here, this is not the same player before his injury.
The Milbury plan and a trade should not even be a thought.
The only acceptable plan is the staff does everything possible to get Okposo back to the player he used to be.
That’s part of what the staff is paid to do, that’s why the player got a five year contract extension.
As for Josh Bailey, many have read our 8/25/11 entry about him being mismanaged by the club.
Bailey dismissed returning to play his third forward position (RW) against Washington.
Despite scoring this blog feels players who teams use first round picks to draft, must play their natural position.
Bailey’s been different than Okposo, he’s had very visible games with a lot of unproductive wingers.
The answer is not to make Bailey a full time wing again.
The facts are the players here all praise this organization, that’s a reflection of the head coach.
Blake Comeau went both ways first crediting his work with Capuano in Bridgeport, then praising Scott Gordon, who picked Nate Thompson over him and played the communication with Capuano card.
Rolston also had some comments that seemed odd considering the minutes and role he was given on the club’s powerplay.
One reason Jack Capuano was given a contract to return in 2011-12 was familiarity with the Isles prospects.
Garth Snow made clear recently he’s very happy with his head coach.
Should he be satisfied getting nothing statistically from most of the veterans, or little aside from the natural progression Tavares has made with Parenteau?
The kind of natural progress you expect from Okposo and Bailey at this point, even without the statistics?
Or is the reality no coach was going to make some of these veterans more productive, and this collectively hurt the ability of many forwards to do better?
Reasoner/Rolston second half numbers a year ago would suggest one thing.
Parenteau, Moulson progress/improvement says that works both ways.
Little to add from twitter comments.
Steve Staios does his absolute best in a role he should never have been entrusted with.
This team came out and should have been down four goals in the first period, even if they won 2-0 it was a terrible response to Sunday’s game.
How they won the previous game in Washington is how they needed to play Monday, the scoreboard never reflected the disparity in skating most of that game.
Flyers come limping home after having a very tough trip to the west coast where they should be tired, it will make no difference if the Isles continue to struggle in games.
Will we see the Islander team that went into Philadelphia and earned a 5-2 win with excellent skating or the game where they looked shorthanded for sixty five minutes and Nabokov stole a shootout?
What’s also is clear very soon, someone’s going to have to start a game besides Nabokov.
Our new twitter box has it’s first update on that front.
Islanders website: Reported Josh Bailey signed a two year contract extension very early Friday morning.
Art Bidlevskii has been returned to his junior team early.
Matt Moulson is being sued for a June 2010 car accident above his insurance premium.
Sorry folks, due to family circumstances, there will be no NYIFC updates regardless in the immediate future.
Thank You For Understanding.
Islanders website: Announced Thursday’s press conference will be live steamed at 1pm.
Islanders twitter feed announced there will be a 1pm Thursday press conference with General Manager, Garth Snow and John Tavares.
Contract, Captaincy or both? Obviously by Tavares recent comments, he has an interest in being named captain.
Despite what will likely be great news on Tavares, what’s needed even more is an announcement on Josh Bailey.
Regardless of Bailey’s comments he has a decision to make.
It could well come down to accept the qualifying offer or do not play. Hopefully it’s more about trying to agree on something longer.
Silly Season Again:
Anyone believe Brett Cyrgalis watches the games when he writes DiPietro went to center ice and fought Johnson at the Nassau Coliseum when anyone who watched knew it was in Pittsburgh and DiPietro did not skate to center ice? Msg was decrepit in 2008, but for some reason the Post writer only goes there with the Coliseum?
I find myself laughing, the NY Post, that does not cover our team with any regularity doing an unheard of five page interview with Rick DiPietro, who has opened up to the Post on more than a few occasions? Garth Snow is also quoted.
That’s more space than Larry Brooks received to sell the Ranger playoffs.
So this five part feature now means full time coverage. Right?
Rick DiPietro has had his first full summer in years healthy to train, if he stays that way he will absolutely help the team.
Thrilled Trent Hunter got a tryout in Los Angeles.
Would love to see Bryan Trottier become part of the Blues management and send John Davidson packing after how poorly he was treated by the former Msg announcer.
Obviously a very tough time for all hockey fans, reflecting on so many recent tragedies that also extend to events of 9/11.
Having written that hockey continues, some great news to start. Former Islander and Sound Tigers, Head Coach, Steve Stirling has returned to the ice for the Senators after his heart attack in June here.
Islanders website: reported Josh Bailey was in New York working out and made clear he wants to be a New York Islander, and expects a new contract to happen.
Ultimately this comes down to what Bailey’s agent advises him and if the player wants to accept the Islanders offer and his agents advice. Says something so far again another quiet negotiation out of the media for Garth Snow.
That also extends to John Tavares comments about wanting to resign here. Curious he commented on captaincy, but only he knows how question was phrased. No matter how he answers that becomes a story.
Thoughts on the trade of prospect David Toews to Chicago? No idea why management did not bring him to prospect/training camps. Toews was not some extreme long-shot, he was a third round pick, so future considerations is not exactly a good exchange for a player they had no obligation to trade at this time.
Obviously a reason for one or both sides, his leaving school to play in Canada should not have been that reason.
NYIFC asked the teams twitter feed that Jiggs McDonald be included and inducted the same night as Ed Westfall. Granted a 70′s hockey player vs an 80-90′s announcer, however McDonald is an NHL Hall of Famer, it’s long overdue he be recognized with his longest tenured New York Islander teammate.
Felt they should have tripled up on the 80′s honors, Goring, Tonelli, Langevin, both Sutter brothers. All Core of Four members have to be included and for me they all deserve their individual banners in the rafters because of being part of a team that won four straight stanley cups/nineteen straight playoff series.
Know this is an era-based induction, however Kenny Jonsson or Patrick Flatley over some of those championship players is an insult.
Cue the Islanders are selling tickets vs they are not respecting their history debate if they do nothing.
Prospect game televised? Don’t bet on it.
First images up of the 40th anniversary logo on the home jersey’s.
Nothing ground-breaking for this time, the good news is prospect camp opens Friday/Saturday. New York prospects play Boston’s prospects at the Coliseum in eight days.
With that New York Notables.
Islanders website: Posted the training camp roster, however that is subject to change. If Tomas Marcinko, who was signed, but is on an NHL/Europe contract is attending, that has not been reported.
NYIFC knows nothing about Art Bidlevski.
On the prospect/veteran front, Blake Kessel, Brian Day, Shane Sims, Dustin Kohn, Mark Wotton, there is nothing reported. Like with Jared Spurgeon, sometimes these players just are invited somewhere.
If Trent Hunter has been invited anywhere, that has not been reported.
Our view on Jay Pandolfo being invited to camp is, as a career left winger, with Moulson, Grabner, Comeau, Martin, Gillies all left wingers, there is no spot for him in New York unless there is an injury.
At best, if he is versatile enough to play right wing he could challenge for Michael Haley’s right wing spot in camp. No doubt he will be a Bridgeport two-way contract if signed, kind of the plan for Jon Sim going into last season before the injuries.
I have little to write on Brian Rolston, it’s unclear where he fits until he reports to camp, and we see how he is played. As a left wing there does not seem to be a spot, despite his comments about playing on a teams top two lines.
Niederreiter/Rahkshani may be fighting Rolston for a spot behind Okposo and Parenteau?
As a center Rolston only fits if Bailey is locked out of camp, or there is an injury with Tavares, Nielsen, Reasoner. No rule Strome, Ullstrom, or another center could not earn a spot or be given an opportunity via trade or signing.
To speculate on Josh Bailey’s contract negotiations again is kind of pointless, or if Charles Wang’s old policy on holdouts still stand which we saw with Bergenheim a few years ago?
Many restricted free agents are unsigned, things will play themselves out. It’s not in Josh Bailey’s best career interest or something Tavares, Okposo will appreciate to see Bailey sitting on the sidelines.
Garth Snow invested a lot of resources in Bailey, the general manager needs him here as part of his plan.
Butch Goring was head coach of this franchise a little over a decade ago, what did he say on television, the first game after Bailey was recalled from Bridgeport last December, after dominating at the AHL level at center?
Bailey has to play center. How do you send someone down, have them do well, recall them, then change their position? (this criticism also extended to Comeau)
All this blog sees is what players do during games.
Was it mismanagement’s fault to give him a spot in the NHL out of the draft? Do not believe so, however to put him at this level, continually move him around from center to wing absolutely is.
Tavares was drafted, placed at center and that was it. This should have been the plan with Bailey, because that’s how he was successful in juniors.
We all remember why looking back after year one Bailey was moved around often. Rob Schremp was claimed off waivers, a lot of centers were here, Bailey was moved to wing year one after getting hurt in camp. Scott Gordon gave Schremp some games on wing, he outright said for Schremp to play here he must be a center.
Scott Gordon did his job, Schremp started producing, however that blocked Bailey from where he needed to be played, it did contribute to his on-ice struggles.
Could Rob Schremp be considered a prospect? Absolutely, however Josh Bailey was the draft pick management went all out to draft.
NYIFC had some entries on this subject 1/26/2011 Islander Notables: Bailey-Nielsen-Schremp Plan Failing along with subsequent entries even suggesting Nielsen move to the fourth line center position because he’s not a five on five scorer.
Eventually we know how things played out, Bailey won out over Schremp, who went on waivers.
Bottom line, the New York Islanders bear a big responsibility for a player they drafted to play center, then did not let play his natural position nearly enough.
Bailey has stretches where he looks dominating at center. When Nielsen’s contract ends after next year, when it comes closer to deciding on Strome, Cizikas, Ullstrom, Brock Nelson or others, management needs to know if Josh Bailey can be the scoring center he was in juniors before a final decision is made?
This is a very talented player where the thought of moving on from him should not even be entertained at this time, unless a franchise talent of greater potential is the return.
Blake Comeau signing for over two million is a nice raise, but far below market value for players with back to back twenty goal seasons.
Our plan for a top four defender?
Let Calvin deHaan play here and win the Calder next season, making a run at the Norris.
Absolutely want to see Mark Katic’s skating get a full look here.
With prospect camp opening September 9th, that is likely the time the club has to complete a new contract with Josh Bailey, with Charles Wang’s rule looming on players not signed by opening of camp.
The owner/gm do not need another headache, but it’s complicated. Bailey saw what Okposo received, his agent will want the same, perhaps not back-loaded?
When Garth Snow is quoted in a professional newspaper as saying he made an offer to Alexei Yashin, there is something to discuss here, not before.
Mark Gandler comes off like a used-car salesman every year, Yashin deserves better from his agent.
* If there is a crush of teams competing for Blake Kessel’s services, I guess we missed it?
* Graduated prospects Brian Day/Shane Sims, both have 8/15 deadlines to sign professional contracts with the Islanders or they are available to any team.
* Getting late for Jack Hillen as well.
* Nothing about Dustin Kohn/Mark Wotton.
Because again we are being asked. Regarding NYIFC in 2011-12, all that can be guaranteed is the domain is paid until October, the arena circumstances have never played any part of NYIFC future, it never will.
Beyond that nothing will be written on this subject moving forward until it’s decided to renew the domain for another year. If not, NYIFC will simply disappear.
Islanders website: Report the New York Islanders have acquired the rights to defenseman Christian Ehrhoff from the Vancouver Canucks in exchange for the Islanders fourth round selection in the 2012 NHL Entry Draft.
Several outlets: Report the obvious that Ehrhoff is a pending UFA, and this trade could be simply for exclusive negotiating rights until Friday, when he will be eligible to be signed by any other club.
Obviously Garth Snow feels he needs a durable veteran who can produce some goals, but this is a boom or bust move with a very limited negotiating window. He could be traded again tomorrow if it’s obvious Snow cannot work a contract.
Snow wants this player, he’s going to have to offer over thirty million, he likely wants a big part of that front-loaded. His agent, Rick Curran, will not be giving any discounts.
Edit-Originally wrote former Islander Brian Curran.
The name Dan Hamuis for Atlantic teams a year ago was a bust.
Many will recall Hamuis was traded to Philadelphia last June 20th from Nashville. When the Flyers could not come to terms with him, he was traded a second time to Pittsburgh on June 26th for a third round pick.
Hamuis eventually signed in Vancouver after July 1st, the Islanders were reportedly another team in the mix after July 1st.
Ehrhoff: had a shoulder injury in the Western Conference Finals.
NHL.com: Dave Lozo does a good job putting out the economics here for Vancouver, along with what he would bring to New York if signed.
NHL.com: Brian Compton released an interview with Josh Bailey, Tuesday night, where the Ryan Strome pick was discussed, along with several topics.
So Katie Strang actually wrote something about front-loaded contracts? The kind twenty other clubs have not been giving out for the same reasons the Islanders have not. Sure it will be turned into a New York Islander-only issue, it’s Cablevision’s newspaper so that’s how it’s presented.
NYIFC has been writing about this problem since 2006, of course Cablevision’s beatwriter may have still been in high school when Jason Blake, Ryan Smyth were getting front loaded contracts with many UFA from her employers team to say nothing of the massive front-loading around the league, which goes back to the Drury, Gomez, Briere contracts.
Here was one of the last NYIFC Blog Entries on Front-Loading from almost a year ago to the day.