Showing posts with label Ryan Strome. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Ryan Strome. Show all posts

March 5, 2014

Isles beat Jets after Sending MacDonald to Flyers

The Isles had one more game to play before the trade deadline, but they were already in the mindset of it being life after March 5th, with Andrew MacDonald (traded) and Thomas Vanek (waiting to be traded) both out of the line-up.

With a lean roster, the Isles had a chance to see what they had in guys who haven't had extended looks with the big club as of yet. It resulted in a 3-2 overtime victory in Winnipeg.

The Isles had some solid contributions from Ryan Strome and Anders Lee. Lee scored his third goal since being called up after the Olympic break ended last week.

Anders Nilsson got the start, to the chagrin of many fans out there who were left scratching their heads as to why he's get the nod after a less that stellar effort in the 3rd period of Sunday's tilt vs. Florida. For me, it's easy to understand.

The NHL is going through a musical goalie campaign, evidenced by Tuesday's trades. The Islanders are at a crossroads in net. They know what Evgeni Nabokov can provide and it's still back-up worthy for the NHL. But what about Kevin Poulin or Nilsson? We've seen a good sample out of Poulin to realize he isn't much of an answer. So that leaves Nilsson.

The Isles won't have much room for error going forward with their goalies. With so many names of younger guys flying around, they need to understand what they have in these two sooner rather than later. If you sign a starter, do you need to sign guys for Bridgeport? The Isles could add anywhere from one to three new goaltenders to the organization this summer and now is the time for them to decide.

Having said all of that, I thought Nilsson played pretty well. Some of the angles are a bit off, but you can see that he has his moments - both good and bad.

Despite looking strong early on, the Isles allowed the Jets to slowly get back into the game as they allowed plenty of scoring chances. Lots of scrambling in front of Nilsson only yielded two goals, however, and gave the Isles the chance to win on Michael Grabner's overtime breakaway.

Grabner has been playing better of late too, at least on the offensive end. All season long he seemed to have the defensive side of his game up to snuff and now it's nice to see the confidence increasing with each goal scored - including the ones from the Olympics.

But enough about this game. We'll get to the more important stuff...

A-Mac's Isles tenure ended on Tuesday. Photo by C. Hessel
Andrew MacDonald to Flyers: Yes, as alluded to earlier the Isles already moved one of their trading chips, shipping MacDonald to the Philadelphia Flyers for a 3rd round pick this summer, a 2nd round pick in 2015, and forward Matt Mangene - who isn't much of a prospect, and never really was.

I like the fact that the 2nd round pick is in the 2015 draft, which by all accounts will be very deep and full of talented players in the first few rounds. The 2015 picks will have value and the Isles can package them to try and get more immediate help for next season, that is if they choose to do so.

It's frustrating to be going through yet another year of this however, and I'll go out on the limb and say I'll be upset if some of these assets are not used to make the team better in the more near term. With holes throughout, and now a glaring one next to John Tavares, this team seriously needs to figure out what their plan is going forward because having disappointing seasons and accumulating picks year after year isn't much of a plan.

So the Isles have one more player to move in Vanek. Everyone else will likely stay for now. I wouldn't expect the goaltending holes to be plugged on Wednesday either. That will be something the team addresses more in the offseason when they can see their options.

We'll see what Wednesday provides. I'll have some thoughts on the deadline as a whole after we hit 3 PM and see the dust settle.

- Chris

January 15, 2014

Isles Streak Ends as Turnovers Plentiful; Strome Sent to Bridgeport

The Isles came back down to Earth on Tuesday night as their hot stretch came to an end in Florida, as they dropped a 4-2 decision to a team that has given them some trouble in recent years. And for the Isles, it was a collapse in a big way.

January 11, 2014

Isles Remain Hot in OT Victory over Avs

When you're hot, things always seem to go your way. And for the New York Islanders, the past week couldn't have gone any better. It started with a huge win over the Dallas Stars on Monday, and ended with an overtime win last night against the Colorado Avalanche. In between the Isles found out they had multiple players named to Olympic teams, including John Tavares getting the nod for the Canadians in Sochi after a five point night and hat trick against the Stars (even though he didn't need all of that to be named, anyway).

December 30, 2013

Isles Rally from Three Goal Deficit to Stun Wild 5-4

Given the fact that the Islanders were playing the Minnesota Wild, you just knew that Nino Niederreiter would do his best to make his presence felt. It seemed predictable, and I even indicated as much on the radio show on Sunday morning. While he didn't live up to my pregame prediction of two goals, he had a goal and an assist as he looked to pace the Wild against his former, struggling team and when he gave the Wild the 3-0 lead many - including myself - thought that was all they needed.

December 15, 2013

Habs drop Isles in OT in Strome's Debut

The last time the Isles won a home game that went to OT was on February 11th, 2012 against the Kings. That would not change Saturday night against the Montreal Canadiens.

The Isles lost again in OT, failing to get to the skills competition which is the only way they've been able to win games that go into extra frames at the Coliseum.

December 8, 2013

Isles Shutout by Kings to run Winless Streak to Nine

Getting off to the right start didn't seem to do the trick for the Islanders on Saturday night in Los Angeles, but then again: it's hard for anything to go right when you have trouble getting shots off after controlling play for the better portion of a game.

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.

February 9, 2012

Four More Years for Frans

Frans Nielsen had one heck of a Tuesday.

With Evgeni Nabokov stopping everything in sight, Nielsen would do what he does best - score a goal in the shootout to help the Islanders to their 1-0 win. Naturally, he used his patented forehand/backhand deke, which has made him the most successful shootout scorer since its implementation in 2005 (20 for 34).

But this was how he celebrated. Just before game time, it was reported by TSN's Bob McKenzie that Nielsen had agreed to a new four year, $11 million contract to remain with the Islanders.

October 5, 2011

Isles Finalize Roster

The NHL deadline for teams to file their final rosters passed at 3 PM on Wednesday with the season set to open on Thursday.

From the Isles press release, the roster is as follows:

Pandolfo Gets a Spot, Strome Signs ELC as Roster Takes Shape

The Islanders had two major contract announcements during the afternoon drive on Tuesday regarding both Jay Pandolfo and Ryan Strome.

Pandolfo had been in camp with the Isles on an invite, hoping to get a spot on the team after being bought out by the Devils after the 2009-2010 season. Pandolfo didn't look like himself after suffering a separated right shoulder and the Devils decided it was best to move on.

September 24, 2011

Isles Come Home to Face Devils; Blood Drive Scheduled

The New Jersey Devils, coming off of a 4-3 preseason loss to the New York Rangers arrive at the Nassau Coliseum to take on the Islanders. It's the Isles only true home preseason game on the Island.

According to the Isles website, the lines are as follows:

Matt Moulson - John Tavares - Nino Niederreiter
Michael Grabner - Frans Nielsen - Kyle Okposo
Jay Pandolfo - Ryan Strome - Tim Wallace
Matt Martin - Josh Bailey - Trevor Gillies

Mark Streit - Steve Staios
Mark Eaton - Milan Jurcina
Aaron Ness - Travis Hamonic

Al Montoya
Kevin Poulin

Pandolfo appears to get a bit of an upgrade in linemates, and for good reason. His showing on Friday night with Trevor Frischmon and Jeremy Colliton (until the latter left with an injury) was pretty strong and warrants more of a look.

Steve Staios, who wore an 'A' on his jersey Friday night in Boston returns to action as Mark Streit's partner on the top pairing. Thats another guy to keep an eye on.

Ryan Strome will be playing his first professional game (sort of, I guess) against a decent NHL line-up. We've seen already what he can do against other prospects both in the orgianization and abroad, but now we'll get to see him against NHL players. He's hoping to stick, even if it's only for nine games. A strong performance Saturday night can go a long way in helping him make the case for that.

BLOOD DRIVE: The Islanders and the American Red Cross are teaming up for a blood drive before the game. Fans who wish to participate can donate blood at any time from 12 noon up until game time at the Coliseum. There is an effort to help replenish the blood supply, which is rather depleted. According to the Red Cross, Hurricane Irene cancelled close to 150 blood drives, causing this sudden drop in levels across blood banks.

It's always good to help out those in need, and this is no different. If you are able to do so, it's highly encouraged that you participate. The first 200 people who participate will receive two vouchers to a future Isles home game. Those who donate and are also attending Saturday night's preseason game will be entered into a raffle to "high five" the players as they come out to the ice.

For more info, check out the Isles press release on the blood drive and remember to do a good deed that can go a long way for others.


June 25, 2011

Isles Take Strome 5th Overall

Over the past couple of seasons, the Islanders have made no secret of the fact that they wanted to add some more skill up the middle. On Friday night, they took a huge step forward in accomplishing that goal.

After missing out on Ryan Johansen at last years draft when they ended up taking Nino Niederreiter, the Islanders had their choice of a couple of centers in 2011. Many fans seemed split on whether they wanted Sean Couturier or Ryan Strome.

As many of you know by now, I was a big fan of Couturier's and wanted the Isles to select him. But in the weeks leading up to the draft as we learned more about Strome, I was warming up to the idea. It seems like the Isles did as well.

Strome fits a need of what the Isles are looking for. They wanted to add that skill, but in Strome they also add some speed and a great style. Strome is a guy who isn't afraid to cut to the net, and by many accounts is as far from a perimeter player as you can get which is remarkable when you consider he isn't the biggest guy out there.

Knowing that, it definitely puts some more attention into Josh Bailey's corner. While his primary position is center, Bailey has also spent some time at the wing. The Islanders need to decide if they prefer to have Bailey at center or wing, and at the same time Bailey needs to step up a bit and prove that he can play anywhere at any time. He's now going to have Strome breathing down his neck for that 2nd line center spot for sure in the future.

When it comes to analyzing some of these guys that we may not know much about, we usually always rely on scouts. While that is obviously one of the better means, it's also good to hear from analysts who watch him more regularly.

Enter Jeff Marek. In the end, he really sold me on the idea of Strome.

Marek, an analyst/radio host for Hockey Night in Canada, sang the praises last season of Jeff Skinner. I'll have to be honest - as much as people pointed that out, I didn't listen because I was too enthralled with what the "scouts" had to say.

Last week in an interview with Chris Botta, Marek sang the praises of Strome. He even went as far to say the Islanders hit a "home run" with their selection after they made the pick.

I really like the pick of Strome because it helps to solve some of the issues that this team has up the middle. We all love Frans Nielsen and how he plays, but in a perfect world he is centering a 3rd line. Strome has the ceiling to center one of the top two lines, but given the fact John Tavares is a center and should remain there will make for an excellent second line pivot.

Some folks were upset in not grabbing a defenseman, but I'm fine with leaving Dougie Hamilton on the board. The defenseman I really wanted was Adam Larsson, and do think that if he slipped past the Devils at 4th then Snow would have taken him.

The Islanders will have some chances to get some solid, big defenseman in the second and third rounds at the beginning of day two (11 AM ET). Look for Scott Mayfield as a potential target. He's a big, nasty defenseman who spent last season in the USHL. The Islanders have gone down the USHL pipeline before and have picked out a couple of solid guys (Kyle Okposo and Matt Donovan to name a couple).

We got some great video footage last night, and have put up some of the clips from last night on our YouTube page. We have a couple of more that will be uploaded as the day goes on so be sure to check for those. We're also going through some of the photos we took to put into a photo gallery. We hope to have that up for our draft round-up post.

Be sure to check back later for any possible big news in Isles Country.


June 24, 2011

Don't Expect Trade of 5th Overall for Big Name

As we get down to the final hours before the 2011 NHL Entry Draft takes place, I'm seeing more and more people saying that Garth Snow should trade the 5th overall pick for NHL talent.

The calls for this seem to grow with the news of the blockbuster trades made by the Philadelphia Flyers as they sent Mike Richards to the Los Angeles Kings and Jeff Carter to the Columbus Blue Jackets.

Don't get me wrong - this line of thinking is a great one. Sean even brought this up during our podcast last weekend, saying that he expects them to trade the pick - but was more hinting at trading down to pick up other assets and then parlaying some of those into NHL talent.

In all honesty, while the second scenario seems like it could be a fantastic approach to Friday night, I think that if the Isles are moving down for a player they like then it's with the idea of drafting one or two of those players high on their draft board rather than to move the picks.

When Sean mentioned that he wanted to see that pick moved, I pressed him on who had in his head that could be had in exchange for the 5th overall pick. The only (realistic?) idea he could come up with is Paul Stastny of the Colorado Avalanche. Other names he came up with? Zach Parise and Drew Doughty.

As nice as Paul Stastny is, he's not a player I'm giving up a 5th overall pick for. In reality, there is no one out there that could be had for a top five pick.

When people talk about making trades for "proven talent," you have to keep in mind what they were traded for. The last time a top five pick was traded for proven talent? Our very own New York Islanders did in 2001, in a package for Alexei Yashin (2nd overall).

There are only extenuating circumstances where a player like that becomes available, and as usual that is not the case this year. But what about the trading back scenario? Well, that would be more plausible.


- The Avalanche traded Alex Tanguay to the Calgary Flames for Jordan Leopold, a 2nd round pick (59th) and a conditional pick.

- The Kings trade Pavol Demitra to the Minnesota Wild for Patrick O'Sullivan and the 17th overall pick.


- The Flames trade Tanguay and a 5th round pick to the Montreal Canadiens for a 1st (25th overall) and 2nd round pick (48th).
- The Kings trade Mike Cammalleri to the Flames for a 1st round pick (17th).
- The Flyers trade R.J. Umberger and a 4th (118th) to the Blue Jackets for a 1st (19th overall) and a 3rd (67th).


- The Anaheim Ducks trade Chris Pronger and Ryan Dingle to the Flyers for Joffrey Lupul, Luca Sbisa, a 2009 1st round pick (21st) and a 2010 1st round pick (29th).


- The Florida Panthers trade Keith Ballard and Victor Oreskovich to the Vancouver Canucks for Steve Bernier, Michael Grabner and a 1st round pick (25th).

At the end of the day, if the Islanders are bringing in that proven vet at the draft then it would most likely come after trading down once or twice to gather up assets they can use to move for talent. Those of you hoping for it to play out this way can keep that in mind with thoughts of Brent Burns, Ryan Malone, Scott Hartnell and whoever else you may have dancing in your head.

What do I think? I think the Islanders are going to stay right where they are at five and make their pick. After the dust settles, the Islanders will have drafted Ryan Strome.

Sean and I will both be at the draft today and are planning to make our way around the parking lot. We'll both have cameras, and I plan to take some candid shots of fan activity for a photo gallery of some kind. So if you see us roaming around, please do come up and introduce yourself. We'd love to meet some of you.

There are couple of things going on that you may have noticed I haven't written about yet (Doug Weight's award, Radek Martinek update, analysis of the Flyers' trades) but that will be coming at some point later. We're trying to focus solely on the draft items for now and go from there.


June 19, 2011

Weekend Update: Isles Bring Back Gillies; Third Jersey; New Podcast

The Islanders kicked off a weekend that would bring plenty of news by announcing the return of controversial pugilist Trevor Gilles, agreeing with the forward on a one year, two-way contract.

Many wondered out loud if Gillies' antics leading to two lengthy suspensions would mean that the Islanders would part ways with him. While many folks enjoyed the bashing of the Penguins back in February, some voiced their displeasure for the way Gillies acted in injuring Eric Tangradi.

Personally, I was done with Gillies and really don't see any more use for him on this team. While it's nice that he's a fan favorite and the players might really like him, I'll point out that this is usually the case with tough guys all around the league. Gillies could have been replaced with many other guys who the fans and players would have loved just as much. For example, Zenon Konopka last season. People fell in love with him right away.
Gillies' deal means Konopka is likely out. Photo by C. Hessel
Now, the better hockey player in Konopka will most likely be sent away. It's not hard to be the superior hockey player in this scenario, but when it comes to having additional muscle aside from Matt Martin this should be coming in the form of Konopka, not Gillies.

Furthermore, don't let the two-way part of Gillies' contract fool you. He was on the same kind of contract last year and ended up sticking with the Isles for most of it when not sidelined serving suspensions.
I'm not trying to deprive the developing youngsters on the team of having a guy willing to throw fists around, but there are plenty of guys out there you can bring in who won't provide as much bad publicity, would be liked just as much and can play a semi-regular shift if need be.

To each their own, I suppose.

Third Jersey: There has been a lot of talk since the season ended that the Islanders are coming out with a third jersey to wear for various dates next season.

While nothing has been confirmed, there does seem to be some information available that leads many to believe that we will indeed have one next season, and it will be black.

I wasn't always a big fan of incorporating black into the Islanders color scheme for the sake of trying to produce a new jersey, however there are a few scenarios where I could see it working. Some fans have posted on message boards what they have heard it might possibly look like and have tried to come up with some designs based on that. Like I said, some things seem to work pretty well, others not so much.

While Sean discussed what he heard and his feelings of the idea of a black jersey in the latest podcast, I let it be known that this is so far down on the totem pole for me.

Many teams love trying to put black into their alternates because of the fact that it "goes with anything." I personally don't care so long as it's done the right way and as long as it doesn't affect player performances.

If a well known, respected player is going to be wearing it next season after being signed or traded for a pick in the upcoming draft, then I'm all for it. As long as the product on the ice is superior to anything we've seen for much of the past four years, they can wear what they want.

One Big Happy Podcast: As mentioned earlier and as promised a couple of weeks back, Sean and I got together this weekend to have our annual pre-draft podcast. In the past when on a time constraint, we would normally restrict this to just talking about the draft. But we were able to expand on our thoughts for this one, and talking about the draft went into talking about trade possibilities for the pick (or other picks currently not in the Isles possession), to talking about past drafts, third jerseys, some referendum stuff and a whole lot more.

Two hours later, we were finally content with ending the show. Hopefully, you guys enjoy the extra long banter. The podcast is split up into two parts.

You can download the podcast by going here.