We are down to the final reviews this week on the New York Islanders for the
2007-08 season this week which will include Bruno Gervais & Freddy Meyer.
Today's review is on right wing Tim Jackman, the final forward to be reviewed.
What can I write about Tim Jackman entering last summer? I knew his name and that he was somewhat of a journeyman player who played very limited games on three other teams. I did not expect to see him in the NHL for many games at all as an Islander but this was a former second rounder at an age where it's a good gamble to sign him in terms of the NHL.
He got his best NHL opportunity last season.
Tim Jackman is one of those players who makes you look at the AHL vs the NHL and how different both leagues are in terms of speed and skill and how big a jump it is from one league to the other. In Bridgeport Jackman is a top six forward who can take over a game. In the NHL he's a fringe player for the fourth line who does not generate many chances with his limited ice-time. That may be a bit unfair but to this date Jackman has not forced a team to give him a top six forward spot for any amount of games.
Having written that Jackman worked hard in his thirty plus games here even if it's not reflective in the stats, giving the team energy and hard work in his shifts with the presence of an player who will defend his teammates. He was not a liability on the ice and did a solid job in all three zones with good hockey sense.
This was one of the taxi-squard players at the end of the season, playing five games in five days as he would go from New York to Bridgeport and back depending on which club had a game as they scrambled to fill out a lineup. I have never seen something like that but Jackman hung in and did a fine job under those circumstances displaying a lot of composure and maturity in his game.
Jackman got a well-earned one year extension by the club, I expect he will get a look as fourth line right wing but Joel Rechlicz also is a right wing with a three year two-way contract who will also provide competition for that spot among several potential players.
Either way Jackman will fit in somewhere, whether it be New York or Bridgeport. It
does not seem feasible he can the play right wing spot on New York's top three lines with Guerin, Hunter and perhaps Okposo nor would his lack of NHL scoring be a good fit for that role unless his NHL offensive game improves dramatically in camp. I'm not sure he solves the enforcer problem on the roster and on this team more is required than just a pure fighter.
He sure looks like a goal-scorer in the AHL, if he could ever play that game at this level Islanders would have themselves a top six right wing.
Jackman did a solid overall job in 07-08 in New York. He worked hard and did everything the club asked of him and was a good fit for his limited minutes. Jackman gets a solid B for his performance last season.