There is nothing new about the New York Islanders heading into a new season trying to improve on the one before. Yet, this one has a different feel even though last season ended again without a trip to the playoffs.
From the moment he first skated onto the Nassau Coliseum ice, Jaroslav Halak changed the atmosphere at Islanders training camp.
The Islanders are set to begin training camp and, albeit for different reasons than last year, are doing so amid a typhoon of optimism and potential.
With training camp around the corner, there are a number of questions surrounding the Islanders. A while back, I sat down with Chris Peters, who writes for Eye on Hockey at CBSSports.com, to ask him a few.
Unless you live in a cave, you’ve probably seen the videos of people dumping ice water over their heads to raise money and awareness for ALS research.
New York is the biggest sports market in the United States, and it’s a magnet for superstars. The Rangers, Islanders and Devils boast a plethora of talented players.
For the first time in a long time, the Islanders might have some margin for error heading into a season.
The Islanders are at a crossroads and have a lot of questions to answer this offseason. I figured I’d sit down with Pro Hockey Talk’s James O’Brien and ask him a few of those questions.
For most teams, the offseason begins when the Stanley Cup Final ends. The New York Islanders, however, are not like most teams. For better or for worse, their situation is unique, something general manager Garth Snow is fully aware of.
“I don’t think we’re far off at all,” defenseman Travis Hamonic said. “I certainly believe in the group we have.”
When John Tavares went down for the season no one thought the Islanders would be remotely watchable, let alone competitive. However, just the opposite has occurred.
Whether it’s the younger players fighting for roster spots or the role players looking to show some pride, I think this team will show a ton of heart the rest of the way.
The Islanders’ franchise player will require eight to 12 weeks of rehab, but should be able to participate in offseason workouts leading up to training camp in September.
Garth Snow is angry, and understandably so. But the words that came out of his mouth on Thursday regarding the shocking injury that ended John Tavares’ Olympics and, more importantly, his season with the Islanders, were misguided.
“Are the IIHF or IOC going to reimburse our season-ticket holders now? It’s a joke,” Snow said. “They want all the benefits from NHL players playing in the Olympics and don’t want to pay when our best player gets hurt.”