You Are Viewing All Posts In The New York Islanders Category

Alex Ovechkin’s goal output debated

Decrease fontDecrease font
Enlarge fontEnlarge font
Alex Ovechkin has preying on weak Southeast Division teams like the Carolina Hurricanes.

When it comes to defense and goaltending, four Southeast teams rank in the NHL’s bottom 10. (Gerry Broome/AP)

By Allan Muir

Ask any coach and he’ll tell you it’s not how you score that matters, but how many. It’s a pragmatic approach for a sport that judges a winner based on a simple tally rather than the awarding of style points.

But does it also matter who you score against?

That’s the argument being posed this morning on Twitter by some fans and media members who are wondering whether the value of Alex Ovechkin’s stats have to be measured with an eye on the pillowy soft competition he faces in the Southeast Division.

Read More…


  • Published On Apr 09, 2013
  • Are Islanders heading to Brooklyn early?

    Decrease fontDecrease font
    Enlarge fontEnlarge font
    Barclays Center in Brooklyn, NY, the future home of the New York Islanders

    With modern new digs and a young, rising team, the Islanders’ future is looking brighter. (Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

    By Allan Muir

    A report this morning from IslandersPointBlank suggests the team is looking to expedite its departure from Long Island a year sooner than originally announced.

    The team is slated to debut at Brooklyn’s new Barclays Center at the start of the 2015-16 season, but the site quoted a source who said both Nassau County and the Isles are open to the idea of a “financial arrangement” that would see the team move to Brooklyn after the end of next season.

    The source said there’s “no chance” the team could move any sooner, noting “there’s too much work to be done” before the transition is feasible…at least on a full-time basis.

    Read More…


  • Published On Apr 08, 2013
  • Dustin Penner tweaks Tim Thomas

    Decrease fontDecrease font
    Enlarge fontEnlarge font

    By Allan Muir

    Remember when Tim Thomas was an all-world goalie, instead of a punchline?

    The Islanders netminder (it still feels weird typing that), who infamously precipitated his exodus from Boston with his decision to skip a team meet ‘n’ greet with President Barack Obama, was on more than a few minds today as the 2012 champion Kings made their own visit to the White House.

    Fortunately, everyone on that team understood the ceremony was about the group, and there weren’t any conscientious objectors at the glorified photo-op. And there was no way they were going to miss a chance to have a little fun at Thomas’ expense.

    At least, Dustin Penner wasn’t.

    Well done, Pancakes! That little shot could make next season’s Kings/Islanders games a whole lot more interesting.


  • Published On Mar 26, 2013
  • My all time top 10 NHL power plays

    Decrease fontDecrease font
    Enlarge fontEnlarge font
    Jari Kurri, Wayne Gretzky and Mark Messier

    Where would you rank a power play that could unleash Hall of Famers Jari Kurri, Wayne Gretzky and Mark Messier? (Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

    By Allan Muir

    Yesterday, as part of SI.com’s Power Week, I ranked my top 10 NHL power forwards of all time. Today, it’s on to the power play.

    I’ve always thought that the effectiveness of a power play is directly proportional to the fear it inspires.

    The best  don’t simply score goals every third chance or so. They’re a looming specter that buys time and space during 40-odd minutes of even strength play — a constant, overhanging threat that forces defenders to hesitate, to keep sticks and elbows to themselves in order to not take the trip to the box that their coach specifically warned them to avoid.
    It’s been a few years since the NHL has seen a truly frightening power play, but there have been some holy terrors in the past.

    Click here for my 10 greatest in league history:


  • Published On Mar 07, 2013
  • Sad end to Rick DiPietro’s NHL career

    Decrease fontDecrease font
    Enlarge fontEnlarge font
    Rick DiPietro, the first goaltender ever taken No. 1 overall, with Dany Heatley (2) and Marian Gaborik (3) on NHL Draft Day 2000. (Jeff McIntosh/AP)

    Rick DiPietro, first goalie ever taken No. 1 overall, with Dany Heatley (2) and Marian Gaborik (3) on NHL Draft Day 2000. (Jeff McIntosh/AP)

    By Allan Muir

    The first time I met Rick DiPietro was at the 2001 NHL Entry Draft in Sunrise, Fla. It was a year after he’d been selected first overall and the Islanders rookie was in town doing press for the league. Smart move. The kid was a natural in front of the camera, handsome, charming, quick-witted. Exactly the image the NHL wanted to present. He was having so much fun with our piece that we gave him the mic and turned him loose to interview a few of the top prospects for us. Comedy gold ensued.

    DiPietro that day lived up to his well-established reputation for being cocky, but in an amiable enough sort of way. It was an aggressive strain of confidence that suggested he’d lived a life where things had pretty much always gone his way and he knew they pretty much always would.

    It didn’t quite work out that way, of course. There were glorious moments for DiPietro during his 12-year-career–the starting role at the 2006 Olympics, the record 56-save game in 2007–but mostly there was struggle. Struggle to validate his draft position. Struggle to stay healthy. Struggle to live up to the most bloated contract in NHL history: 15 years, $67.5 million, signed in 2006 after a 30-win season.

    GALLERY: The painful saga of Rick DiPietro

    Read More…


  • Published On Feb 22, 2013
  • Report says New York Islanders up for sale

    Decrease fontDecrease font
    Enlarge fontEnlarge font
    With a loan payment due next year, Islanders owner Charles Wang is looking to sell the team.

    With a large loan payment due next year, Islanders owner Charles Wang is reportedly trying to sell the team. (AP)

    By Allan Muir

    So apparently Charles Wang isn’t exactly a Brooklyn kind of guy.

    Just months after sealing a deal that would see the New York Islanders move to the posh new Barclays Center in the hipster borough, Wang is looking to sell the team according to a report by Josh Kosman in The New York Post.

    From the story:

    Owner Charles Wang has been in talks with The Raine Group, a Manhattan investment bank, regarding the sale of the money-losing team, two sources said.

    Read More…


  • Published On Feb 16, 2013
  • Bruins trade Tim Thomas to Islanders

    Decrease fontDecrease font
    Enlarge fontEnlarge font
    Tim Thomas was traded to the Islanders

    Tim Thomas will likely never play for the Islanders, but acquiring his contract makes sense. (Winslow Townson/AP)

    By Allan Muir

    Tim Thomas, the man who was an island unto himself in Boston’s locker room, is now an Islander.

    At least as far as the salary cap bean-counters are concerned.

    The trade, first reported by blogger Eklund and confirmed by Arthur Staples of Newsday, has the Bruins receiving a conditional second round pick in 2014 or 2015 for the netminder who chose a life of seclusion in Colorado over playing out the final season of his four-year, $20 million contract with Boston.

    The condition, though, is that Thomas play at least one game for the Isles. Since that’s unlikely to happen, the deal is all about swapping cap dollars rather than tangible assets.

    Giving away the world-class goaltender who led the team to the Stanley Cup just two years ago isn’t as crazy as it might seem.

    Read More…


  • Published On Feb 07, 2013
  • NHL suspends Islanders’ McDonald for hit; OHL bans ref for Twitter stupidity

    Decrease fontDecrease font
    Enlarge fontEnlarge font

    By Allan Muir

    Give Brendan Shanahan credit. The league’s chief disciplinarian is two-for-two on the season.

    Islanders’ forward Colin McDonald became the second player suspended this season by Shanahan after a vicious hit Tuesday night on Pittsburgh’s Ben Lovejoy. Shanny got the call right.

    By sitting him for two games (and costing him $7,567.56 in lost salary), Shanahan noted that McDonald was pursuing the puck into the corner but had his eyes on Lovejoy’s back before “recklessly driving the Pittsburgh defender into the boards with great force.”

    McDonald was assessed a boarding major on the play, but this was the sort of black-and-white incident that cried out for supplemental discipline. Lovejoy had his back turned the entire way and McDonald had plenty of time to bail out on making contact. Add that he hit the defender about three feet from the boards — the point at which a player has no time or space to protect himself — and McDonald is lucky that his sentence wasn’t longer. That Lovejoy suffered a bloody nose but no serious injury probably saved McDonald from a stiffer penalty.

    Read More…


  • Published On Jan 30, 2013
  • Report: Nino Niederreiter Requests Trade From Islanders

    Decrease fontDecrease font
    Enlarge fontEnlarge font
    Nino Niederreiter has requested a trade from the Islanders

    Once a highly-touted prospect, Nino Niederreiter wasn’t invited to training camp. (Christopher Pasatieri/Getty Images)

    By Allan Muir

    Does anyone want to play for the New York Islanders anymore?

    Katie Strang of ESPN New York is reporting Nino Niederreiter, the team’s top prospect, is the latest to request a ticket to anywhere else in the league.

    From Strang:

    “The former first-round pick (5th overall, 2010) is unhappy with his current situation, the source said, and feels he would be best served playing somewhere other than with the Islanders organization. His agent informed Islanders general manager Garth Snow of the request last week, the source said, although Snow is not believed to be amenable to doing a deal — at least at the moment.”

    It’s safe to assume the 20-year-old winger was miffed after being passed over when the Isles sent out training camp invites, and if that is the case you can see where he’s coming from. He spent the majority of last season with the team and while he only scored once an finished a staggering minus-29, he had every reason to believe he was in their plans for 2013.

    Read More…


  • Published On Jan 22, 2013
  • Eastern: 15 teams worth of questions — and then some

    Decrease fontDecrease font
    Enlarge fontEnlarge font
    Alex Ovechkin and Dan Girardi

    Alex Ovechkin has a new coach to get used to, and the Rangers may pay a price for their reliance on blocking shots. (Will Schneekloth/Icon SMI)

    By Stu Hackel

    Every NHL season starts with expectations and conjures up predictions about where teams might finish, but this is a season like no other. You can’t even compare it too closely to the lockout-shortened 1995 campaign, one played with a 26-team NHL, a different conference alignment and playoff format, no shootout or “loser’s point,” and far less parity. And even in a normal season, there is so much uncertainty in sports that preseason predictions are a waste of time.

    SI.com colleagues Brian Cazeneuve, Sarah Kwak and Adrian Dater have their thoughts on the upcoming season and you can find them here:

    Power Rankings | Milestones | Central | Northwest | Pacific | Southeast | Atlantic | Northeast

    Our favorite preseason pastime at Red Light is trying to boil down each team’s success or failure to one or a few essential themes. Each club has them and the answers to these questions, theoretically at least, should go a long way to determining if it plays up to expectations and potential. Keep in mind they all take place within the framework of the shortened season imposing its own unique characteristics on the playoff chase, which we pondered in this post.

    Below are the essential questions for each team in the East and here’s the link for teams in the West:

    Read More…


  • Published On Jan 17, 2013


  •