January 17, 2013

Isles add Keith Aucoin, Send Strome and Reinhart to Juniors

For the third day in a row, the Islanders made some noise on the waiver wire as they continued to try to shore up some areas where they lacked depth on the roster.

Needing an extra center with a splash of experience, the Islanders announced they claimed Keith Aucoin off waivers from the Toronto Maple Leafs.

Aucoin is a 34-year old, who has primarily been an AHL veteran. He's put up several solid seasons down there, and has only mixed in 102 NHL games.

His best time in the NHL was last season, when he put up 11 points in 27 games for the Washington Capitals and also played in 14 playoff games. This season with the Toronto Marlies, Aucoin was 10-27-37 in 34 games.

Aucoin has been a playmaker through most of his career, and may get a shot on one of the bottom lines in the NHL with the Isles. The team is suffering through injuries to Josh Bailey and Jesse Joensuu - both suffered overseas - and need to try and patch things up with AHLers and tweeners. Aucoin is as solid an option as any.

Right now as it stands the Isles are looking a bit weak on their checking lines, where Aucoin would figure to play. But it's possible they are hoping he can catch lightning in a bottle and bring some of his playmaking to one of those lines and perhaps get some powerplay time.

We'll know tomorrow how he fits in, but it's not awful depth to have even though he is on the small side and defensively is not very strong.

What this move did do was bring an end to Ryan Strome for this season with the Islanders. Shortly after the announcement of the Aucoin move, Strome was sent down along with Griffin Reinhart. Both players were sent to their respective junior teams.

The Islanders had maintained all along that neither player, particularly Strome, would spend time up here if they weren't going to receive significant minutes. It seems as though they have learned from their developments of Bailey and Nino Niederreiter.

Guys like Aucoin and Colin McDonald will get chances on the bottom two lines until injuries heal. It's better to have guys like this playing brief minutes there or spending time in the press box rather than young prospects like Strome, Brock Nelson or John Persson.

Team rosters have to be set by Friday at 3 PM. I would think as far as moves go, what you see is what you get here. There won't likely be much of anything else. The Islanders won't claim Tim Connolly, and Scott Gomez is likely to get a cheap contract elsewhere. The Isles will try and get by with what they have.

But, I've been wrong in the past, so who knows? We'll see what the final day of camp brings. We'll have a better sense of opening night lines as well.


1 comment:

Annoyed Isles fan said...

This is why the Islanders are a joke; they're a team stuck in the bottom of nhl standings year after year. The organization never lets their young talent learn at the big league level. The past 3 years have drafted in the top five and these players can't make the roster for opening night? Why? Is the team too good that there is no room for them? Are you kidding me......half this years team is a bunch of bums. Free agents no one wants, players waived for being unproductive. Two notable draft picks the Isles have passed on the past 2 yrs Sean Couterier and Cam Fowler have played in the Nhl since day one both were passed over by GM Garth Snow for what reason? Were they not good enough tp make a team thats finished last or next to last for the past decade?
Moves this bad are unforgivable, ownership get a clue fire Garth Snow's sorry ass!