Islander News Articles 7/15

Newsday: Greg Logan has more on the change with Ted Nolan's comments he knew he had differences with Garth Snow but was just preparing for the season and for his part had no idea the end was coming until the gm called him in the office this morning agreed it would be better off to part ways. He also said from here he will just move on and take some time to go home to be with my family for a few days and that hopefully he will have another chance to coach in the league.

The now former coach also said this was nothing like the situation with Buffalo and that every coach who gets let go, there's some differences of opinions and that he is no different. That he both he and Garth Snow wished the other well and both left feeling good about what they accomplished while never once saying he was unhappy coaching here, only that he was unhappy with the record and not making the playoffs that he loved Long Island that he will certainly miss it and the fans.

Mr Logan for his part writes a league source said the Islanders gave Nolan written permission to interview with other teams after the season but he did not receive an offer then goes to a brand new angle where he quotes unnamed players who had problems with Ted Nolan but does not identify them with a lot of new stuff we have not read to date.

From there the beatwriter plays the unnamed player quote game but makes sure to point out Rick DiPietro is not the player in question nor was there an issue with playing Dubielewicz against the Rangers.

Mr Logan writes as the season came apart in March another prominent player challenged Nolan's strategic decisions where he says he was told by Ted Nolan that Charles Wang was running the show, that the player refused to accept this and went to Snow and arranged a meeting with the GM, Nolan and Wang, who denied interfering with the players quotes Nolan pretty much tried to say he didn't tell me that and portrayed him me as a liar, that the player put his -- -- on the line, and it kind of made me see him the coach in a different light.

In addition Mr Logan writes another key leader who did not want to be identified also had a falling-out with Nolan and began to question the coach's methods that he did some -- -- things, that he wasn't listening to his assistants and he was kind of going the opposite way and that everyone knew that.

Mr Logan reports Nolan declined comment on the report of the sit down with Wang, Snow and the player who challenged his authority, and he also refused comment about postseason job interviews.

NYI Fan Central Comments:
I don't know, now I guess it's time to play the unnamed player quote game and air every bit of a teams dirty laundry which is over the line to me for a club barely covered unless it's for this purpose. This could have been done months ago also by Mr Logan but given Comrie resigned, Sillinger was on the sidelines with Sutton, Hunter resigned, Witt resigned and he made clear it's not Rick DiPietro were running out of unnamed veterans unless it's one of the players who were not offered a contract, my guess is we'll never know but it keep the rumor mill spinning.

No wonder Doug Weight has had nothing to say upon signing here. I do not even want to blog on it anymore between the unnamed quotes and the beat writer now turning into deep throat.

Newsday: Mr Logan had a run down of Ted Nolan's Islander coaching career.

Newsday: Wallace Matthews who does other sports for the first time in what seems years jumps all over the bash the Islanders bandwagon starting by writing this will be the beginning of Garth Snow's real tenure as general manager and like Mr Logan he makes sure to find a lot of unnamed sources to rip the club and of course blames Mr Wang's management by committee plan which other NHL teams are now copying which he ignored along with the club making four playoffs in the last six seasons which is hardly great but not dismal as he describes it.

NYI Fan Central Comments:
It's hard to take Mr Wallace seriously because he is not around the New York Islanders and never writes about the club. He seemed to know more about the Rangers/Neil Smith past problems but had no problem telling us us a hockey committee approach does not work. Mr Wallace also seemed to go out of his way to find unnamed sources willing to bash the club to overstate his points.

I will say calling the Nassau Coliseum the dreadful Nassau Mausoleum (presumably) hemorrhaging money does not come off as objective here at all, it reflects someone with a bit of an agenda who should be blaming Nassau County for that who was more interested in writing Rangers because of his apparent lack of knowledge of the
current New York Islanders.

Newsday: Katie Strang had assistant coach Gerard Gallant's comments who learned the news via a phone call from the Islanders' public-relations staff just before taking the ice but there was no indication other than the reports of friction in Newsday but he had no idea something was going to happen.

Executive director of player development Bryan Trottier was shocked and had no clue who was informed by assistant coach John Chabot and was wordless and wondered why the team would be looking for a new head coach and said he's a big Ted Nolan fan and was not interested in wanting to take over the job and says he wouldn't consider coaching in the league for another three to four years.

Mike Dunham commented the timing of the decision struck some as odd, but situations like these are never pleasant and felt there is never a good time for this but the club wants to get off to a good start going into the season.

Kyle Okposo and Blake Comeau found out about Nolan by reading it on the Internet in the Islanders' dressing room before their session on the ice. Okposo had no idea what was going on. Comeau praised Ted Nolan and said he was great with him and gave him confidence which led to a bit of success last season for him.

Newsday: Katie Strang also had fan reaction at the prospect camp to the coaching change.

NY Times: Dave Caldwell has another article with comments from Garth Snow and Ted Nolan with little new beyond the general manager being quoted as saying were committed to playing our younger players and a player like Jeff Tambellini deserves a chance to get significant ice time with us while Ted Nolan feels he did the best he could.

NY Post: Dan Martin does an article on the change with a lot of repeat comments from Ted Nolan and Garth Snow and speculates the club could have a problem attracting a name coach.

NY Post: Larry Brooks is the only one so far behind on what's happening with the Islanders he blames it on Rick DiPietro not playing against the Rangers which even DiPietro himself and Newsday's Greg Logan wrote was not the problem. He does make the fair point this was a conflict between the front office and the head coach on the
age-old issue of cultivating kids as opposed to leaning on journeymen veterans.

NYI Fan Central Comments:
Of course Mr Brooks puts it on Rick DiPietro, the Ranger games are his only time he really pays attention to the club, and it goes without writing it he had some shots for Ted Nolan and the club not attracting free agents, despite Mark Streit deciding on the Islanders over the Rangers at a bargain price compared to Wade Redden who even had to have a partial no-trade clause according to Mr Brooks.

Sporting News/Atlanta Journal Constitution: Craig Custance reports he tried to contact Bob Hartley today to see if he would interesting in coaching the Isles and what he would bring to the club along with Atlanta getting out of part of his contract for next season.

Canadian Press: Has an article with goaltender Rick DiPietro's comments in a phone interview that he was a little bit surprised at but at the end of the day they made a decision and are moving in a new direction.

He felt teams that are successful with the salary cap have been able to develop talent in their system with good draft picks and have good free agent signings and that there are a lot of exciting guys coming in and that he feels the club needs somebody that is going to be able to grow and teach those guys to become NHL players.

He did not think there were any problems over the situation with Dubielewicz playing against the Rangers caused any problems between him and Nolan nor did he think it created serious issues between the coach and GM and that there are times there will be disagreements, but it is part of being a family and in sports, too.

Cbs Sportsline: Wes Goldstein rates the Isles summer moves a D and feel the club will have the same problem attracting coaches as they do free agents. Scott Burnside's headline writer at Espn did the Islander-bashing, Mr Burnside made sure to find an unnamed source to take a quick dig but for the most part knows so little about the team other than background and that he felt they were never good enough to begin with he adds nothing new.

THN: Mike Brophy feels the Islanders made a mistake to part company with Ted Nolan and speculates the coach may have been looking for the door and feels the club could be year away from competing. He also writes Pat Burns, Bob Hartley, Marc Crawford, Joel Quenneville and Paul Maurice will have to think long and hard before hitching their wagon to this mess while writing Los Angeles should be quick to contact Ted Nolan.

Globe & Mail: Tim Wharnsby has some incorrect speculation as by the time the news filters with the quotes it is twisted into so many different angles they contradict one another but does tell us Garth Snow tended goal for the Hartley-coached Cornwall Aces of the AHL in the early 1990s, and briefly played for Crawford and Quenneville with the old Quebec Nordiques in 1994-95.

Montreal Gazette: Pat Hickey anoints the Isles as the most dysfunctional club in the league with Los Angeles and writes an article without any quotes with his own speculation on the change with the timing the issue because Garth Snow waited so long to make a change because the owner hired Ted Nolan.

National Post: Mark Spector has his own speculation on the change and makes comparisons with the circumstances in Buffalo that led to his dismissal. BCHL Media has a feature on Islanders camp tryout Anthony Perdicaro who was part of the prospect camp on Monday.

Ct Post: Michael Fornabaio reports on the first day of prospect camp with an article on Denver product Peter Mannino with his comments on the lineage with Wade Dubielewicz and his signing with the club.

Ct Post: Michael Fornabaio in the Ct Post blog gives his thoughts on the coaching change and the reaction at prospects camp and tells us a little about Joensuu, Marcinko and gives us who he thinks is signed along with other items.

More on Tuesday:

So who hires the next Islanders coach?

New York Islander Fan Central | 7/14/2008 07:50:00 PM | | | 4 Comments
Will Garth Snow make the call on who the next coach is?

If the general manager today said he expects the assistant coaches to return next season is Garth Snow about to hire his first head coach and pick who he feels gives this franchise the best chance at moving forward or will Mr Wang be making that choice as he did when he selected a coach and a gm before finding another gm?

Anyone coming in from the outside will likely want to bring in their own people behind the bench which has been a long-standing policy under this ownership. For years Greg Cronin was a holdover in the organization, now Jack Capuano is here from Steve Stirling's staff and coaching the Sound Tigers.

I'm sure the quick and painless fit would be Gerard Gallant who was fired in Columbus before coming here but will not be popular with the fans because he has no record of success. Many clubs with a staff in place may not grant permission for an assistant to be interviewed.

Sure we all know the names like Hartley, Tortorella, Crawford and a bunch of others are available including Milbury if you want to toss your dinner with disgust.

Garth Snow said it could take two days or two weeks but more importantly it will be interesting to see if this is his hire and if that choice is willing to work with prospects without a veteran franchise talent.

Also if this general manager is working only with a one year contract as Mr Botta wrote how are they going to hire another coach and give him more term?

Updated 10pm:
Garth Snow appeared on Msg at 10pm and said he will be starting to do interviews for a new coach right away and joked he wished he could hire someone in the next hour.

Islander notables

New York Islander Fan Central | 7/14/2008 06:32:00 PM | | | | | | | Comment Here
Associated Press: Has more from Garth Snow with additional speculation that
that Gerard Gallant, an Islanders assistant, has been an NHL head coach with Columbus and might be considered and also assistants John Chabot and Dan Lacroix are expected to return.

In addition Garth Snow said it will take a little time to hire a new coach, he also felt Nolan and Snow disagreed over the reasons for the disappointing record with the gm believing the team was underachieving and had the makeup to be a playoff team again while the coach felt he didn't have the necessary personnel to win and took what the writer called a shot at Snow when he said in February we don't have natural 50-goal scorers, we have guys who work for everything they get and this is the way
we play.

Today the general manager said he disagreed on that and felt Bill Guerin and Miro Satan were pretty good goal-scorers but it's all water under the bridge and said it does not do anyone any good now to comment about it, but that last summer Ted was in on the process of bringing in free agents.

NYI Fan Central Comments:
I feel like were back in the situtation with Dubielewicz where the gm says were a family and wants to keep things in house but then says something about where they had differences but then gets specific and has to defend his viewpoint by making light of the some of the same things he says should be kept between the walls. It's almost like Snow had make sure we all knew Ted Nolan was in on the process of adding veterans last summer.

If it's water under the bridge, keep it in house as you say and stand by your decision.

Islanders website: Also had a feature on prospect Matt Donovan.

Daily News: Found a writer named Andy Martino to go write an article on today's events with more of the same from Garth Snow and Ted Nolan with the general manager commenting that we will be looking for a coach who can communicate with our younger players, who is motivational, inspirational and completely knowledgeable.

Johnlabattcenter: Annouced the New York Islanders will play the Philadelphia Flyers in an exhibition game on September 25th.

NY Times: Dave Caldwell blogged on the dismissal of Ted Nolan with comments from both sides.

Islanders website: Recapped day one of prospect camp with comments from Bryan Trottier, Jason Gregiore and Mark Katic as the players took part in some grueling testing to measure their level of fitness in the morning and sat in on a number of lectures. Later in the day, the players took to the ice for the first time. Director of Player Development Bryan Trottier, Islanders assistant coaches John Chabot, Gerard Gallant and Dan Lacroix, Bridgeport Sound Tigers head coach Jack Capuano led this afternoon's skate.

For now the Post only had the AP story. Quiet in the Ct Post for today but I'm sure we'll get plenty from Mr Fornabaio.

A little too early for the shock jocks like Scott Burnside or some of the writers at THN/elsewhere to unload on the club, some of it may have merit but I'll reserve judgement.

Ted Nolan out as Islanders head coach

New York Islander Fan Central | 7/14/2008 02:05:00 PM | | | 4 Comments

Islanders website: Report the New York Islanders on Monday announced Ted Nolan will not return as coach for the 2008-09 season with comments from General manager Garth Snow and Ted Nolan with both citing philosophical differences.

Newsday: Greg Logan in the Islanders Newsday blog which was a repeat of what was in the paper here also reports on the dismissal of the head coach with Garth Snow's comments that it took over three months because it was a difficult decision for him and for Ted Nolan, because of the owners desire to give Ted Nolan the opportunity to coach in the NHL and because of his loyalty to those he hires and explains further he will take the criticism and that arriving on this decision was a process as he spoke with the now former coach regularly following the season and when the draft and free agency ended. Ted Nolan was not available for comment in Mr Logan's blog.

Mr Logan has a lot of his own speculation that has been repeated here several times as his reasons for the change but added a few more today on the teams defensive system vs playing veterans vs prospects.

John Tortorella, Paul Maurice, Bob Hartley are the early speculation for a replacement and that executive director of player development Bryan Trottier, commentator Butch Goring or Bridgeport coach Jack Capuano are not in the running for the head coach position.

Newsday: Anthony Riber plays the shock jock game reminding us how he and Jim Baumbach made this a big issue back in early April and of course writes the Isles are a Mickey Mouse organization that once again has proven it has no clue and is critical of the timing because of all the good coaches that have been hired.

NYI Fan Central Comments:
They sat on that stage together and lied to us.

The season ended back in early April, it took over three months of articles with both of them appearing at team functions taking questions from fans where the next day the one story would be reported with the quotes from the people involved the exact opposite or they outright denied they had problems?

Ted Nolan back on April 15th in the Times and Transcript said he intends to be back and talked about his team here as he denied he wanted to return to Moncton, Garth Snow said there was no reason Nolan would not return on April 10th.

After this dance for that went on for three months they both finally came to realize they could not get past their philosophical differences? It's insulting to this fan for both Garth Snow and Ted Nolan to let this go on for as long as it did and a waste of everyone's time.

Garth Snow wants to make it about the owners loyalty? To me that is a lot of nonsense. You say someone is your coach on April 10th you keep him or end the speculation and make a change if you do not think something will work out or the owner steps in and settles it once and for all, you do not tell us your relationship is great when it's not.

This was handled very poorly all around. Mr Botta in his blog thought Ted Nolan had problems not only with the general manager but with the veteran players. His speculation about how the coach said things to separate himself from the club speaks for itself and he knows when a coach feels like an outsider or for himself.

Bottom line a qualified well-respected players coach is gone, he helped provide the franchise credibility with the public and a belief in what they were trying to do and the Isles are going to have to take the hit with the public, you look at a coach like Nolan and despite the roster you feel he is part of the long-term answer.

I was frankly surprised his comments on May 2nd in the Saint Sault did not get him fired saying how difficult the coaching circumstances would be on a one-year contract after the organization's stance back in April was they do not comment on contracts.

My impression was Ted Nolan drew a line in the sand when he said that.

On the ice we could make a lot of discussion the injuries were too much but when your team scores two goals fourteen games in a row when healthy some of that has to go on the coach who obviously from watching games preferred the veterans to the prospects because a coaches job is to win. That also has to go on the general manager because he was part of getting those players along with Ted Nolan.

If this coach wanted to go with veterans over the prospects he was the wrong fit for this team moving forward and if he did have damaged relationships with veterans which Mr Botta also touched on where do you go?

Which is something that should have been decided in early April because no games have been played since.

Both the general manager and the coach put on a very poor show for us, the owner deserved better from both of them who he gave this opportunity to but he's hardly blameless doing an interview and the first words out of his mouth were I told you so to the coach about playing prospects.

For those who will write me and say Newsday/Greg Logan were correct and I was wrong writing a blog about Newsday/Greg Logan on the Grassy Knoll I'm afraid you would be missing the point entirely.

I commented a bunch of times over the weekend Ted Nolan could be fired immediately but if the speculation from both Greg Logan and Katie Strang contradict the quotes from both Garth Snow and Ted Nolan and even the two Newsday reporters are contradicting their own stories to go with retractions then the coverage is also a problem.

This was my primary issue with their coverage and I stand by every word I have written on this subject. I have no doubt this level of reporting did not help their working relationship either because obviously the communication between both of them was terrible. Also it's painfully clear the working relationship between Newsday and the club is also not very good also when there are retractions combined with Mr Logan complaining about not being consulted about injuries in the paper despite all his vacation time.

These man obviously had differences, they did not need Newsday to get behind and give it a push. For myself the disconnect between Newsday and this franchise may even be deeper than anything between Nolan or what now is his former general manager.

Very sad to me a man who pulled his car over in tears upon learning Peter Laviolette would be named Islander coach for 2002 wondering what it would take to become an NHL head coach again and wanted to be part of a club that had missed the playoffs seven years in a row had philosophical differences that could not be worked out. He had no problem coaching prospects in Moncton, why was it a problem now?

I thank Ted Nolan for Al Arbour night and the class he showed, I thank him for coming here and being the teams coach for two years but I do have bitter feelings about his part in how he sat on that stage and denied there were problems with the general manager, that to me is not honest on his part or Garth Snow and upper management.

Good day for the prospects to show up for mini-camp and be presented with this, not a good first impression at all?

I know Bob Hartley had a lot of good things to say about Garth Snow when he was hired as general manager, that would be the first person on my list but you need a coach who will want to be part of a youth movement.

This is one Garth Snow needs to make a quick decision on if it's his call.

So what happens now?
I put up all the articles critical of the club, regardless of whether it is fair or reasonable or comes from someone who follow the club or just shows up once a year to bash the New York Islanders.

Islanders/Newsday camp primer

New York Islander Fan Central | 7/13/2008 05:06:00 PM | | | Comment Here
Islanders website: John Hill has his part II primer for the Isles upcoming minicamp with the players attending and the schedule, part one is here for the complete list.

Newsday: Greg Logan previews the upcoming mini-camp beginning in Syosset on Monday with comments from assistant general manager Ryan Jankowski. Mr Logan also reports Bridgeport Sound Tigers coach Jack Capuano will run the on-ice sessions as the designated development coach, as he did a year ago.

In the former Islander deparment both eliteprospects/european report Branislav Mezei has signed with Barys Astana here.

Newsday/Mr Logan back on Grassy Knoll

New York Islander Fan Central | 7/12/2008 11:26:00 PM | | | 15 Comments
Newsday: Greg Logan picks up where he left off earlier on Ted Nolan vs Garth Snow about the coaches future status with a few of the things Mr Botta touched on in one of his final blogs from a week ago.

Ted Nolan is quoted as saying his relationship with the gm has been the same, that he spoke with Garth Snow and wants to concentrate on coaching and doing the best job he can, that he had no input into signing Doug Weight or Mark Streit and that Garth Snow and the scouting staff made those decisions.

Mr Logan for his part speculates Nolan was not consulted about trading down for Josh Baily, he also speculates to date, Nolan has received no assurances from the organization that he will be the coach and reports Garth Snow declined comment.

NYI Fan Central Comments:
Greg Logan and New York Islander coverage in Newsday, two steps forward, five backwards.

Does Mr Logan hold some of this stuff and pick a moment to dump it on the public to hold down anything positive about this team or does his editor demand a team barely being covered have to become a soap opera and force this kind of coverage from him?

Twenty nine other clubs have successful or struggling coaches fired or rehired without these conspiracy theories a running sidebar in their newspapers for months.

Did someone on the Newsday staff see the website article on the new season tickets sold and decide what can we do get something negative stirred up?

You have to read the actual quotes vs the beatwriter speculation here folks. As usual what is the point of this unless Garth Snow or Ted Nolan confirm it?

Worst of all Newsday is contradicting itself with some of this because anyone who reads the paper knows what they reported already and see the mistakes in coverage.

All this comes off as forced by Newsday and designed to stir up negative fan reaction. It would be another thing if Snow and Nolan were quoted and confirmed this speculation because then it would be fair game and I would have no problem with it and if Nolan is fired so be it, but aside from that it's time for Greg Logan to get off the grassy knoll with regard to this until they are quoted and say there are problems.

Almost feels now like we were being set up with all those great updates the last few days.

Worst of all Mr Logan's speculation is not even correct according to the other writer in his own paper in Katie Strang and Mr Logan contradicts himself.

Get those headlines ready for Tsn and the Canadian Press along with all the other papers and fire up the rumor mill.

Newsday: Islanders' Nolan on the hot seat
You know the drill by now.

All I ask my blog readers to do here is read how many mistakes in reporting were made here and then make up your own mind.

Lets take these one at a time:
Mr Logan writes " Contacted recently at the hockey camp he runs in Ontario, Nolan was asked if he's confident he will be coaching the Islanders when training camp .begins in mid-September. "I'm confident in my ability to coach," Nolan said. "I know I've got one year left on my contract, and I'm going to make it the best year of my coaching .career. Hopefully, it will get me another one."

NYI Fan Central Comments:
Recently? All those quotes were back on May 2nd in the Sault Starr and were blogged about at the time here with comments in that article from Ted Nolan who denied any problems with Garth Snow or Rick DiPietro but was quoted as saying it was difficult coaching under the circumstances of a one year contract begging the question was Mr Logan only finding this out now or saving it as fodder to stir the pot?

According to Mr Logan, Ted Nolan feuded openly with Snow about his role in the decision to part with free-agent goaltender Wade Dubielewicz. When they appeared together later at an Islanders function, the rift was evident as they expressed opposing views on how to improve the power play Snow favored better preparation, and Nolan suggested better players were needed.

NYI Fan Central Comments:
Katie Strang covered this event on 6/4 (while Mr Logan was AWOL after creating this huge issue over Dubielewicz) and at the time reported herself that basically it boiled down to a minor misunderstanding in Newsday's Islander blog here begging the question what open feud and if the other Newsday writer did not report any of this on 6/5 where has Greg Logan been for over a month to where he's making all these claims now on 7/13?

The next day on 6/5 Ms Strang wrote another article which was posted on this blog with a full summary of the event here with Garth Snow's comment that we're a tight-knit organization and the situation with confidence in Wade Dubielewicz was not as big of a deal as what people are making it out to be. In addition, the gm said everything is great regarding his relationship with the coach but prefers that situations like this be kept within the four walls. Ted Nolan for his part felt there was no disagreement at all, that he and Snow agreed on the conditioning, that Dubie was hurt in the off season, so he couldn't come in and that sometimes that's construed as lack of confidence, but it was maybe a lack of communication.

This is what Mr Logan writes is an an open feud? Where were you to tell us all this new information Ms Strang did not report on when she was at this team event?

Worst of all in this article one of the first things Mr Logan writes is:
To date, Nolan has received no assurances from the organization that he will be the coach. Snow, who declined comment, is emphasizing the development of young players as opposed to acquiring the veterans Nolan prefers.

Funny Mr Logan but you have Garth Snow's quotes on April 10th in your own article here where you asked Garth Snow if there's any reason to believe Nolan won't return, and according to you Snow said, "I don't see any reason. He's our coach."

Here's the full Newsday link which is outdated to this article here which Mr Logan did a blog preview for at the time
herethat is still available.

Nolan and the organization picked up steam in late March when the coach was rebuffed by owner Charles Wang after expressing his desire to receive an extension before the final season of his three-year contract.

NYI Fan Central Comments:
Picked up steam? Rebuffed? Mr Logan was the only steam behind this on 3/23 when he
asked Ted Nolan about his contract and thought this was such a critical issue we had no game day coverage.

Ted Nolan on 3/23 never expressed any public desire to receive an extension of his contract. He was quoted as having said he plans to fulfill his contract however he has to find out exactly what the plans are and that there have been no discussions, at the time he even said he did not even have an agent.

Did someone hijack Greg Logan's account at Newsday to stir up garbage tonight because most of this is simply not correct?

Of course we had coverage of this back on 3/23 here while Newsday's actual link is outdated here but a few sites have summaries of this article here.

Mr Logan even reports Josh Bailey and Nolan's son Jordan were teammates in the Ontario Hockey League last season yet Nolan wasn't consulted about the pick

NYI Fan Central Comments:
Meanwhile here is Josh Bailey's comments in the Windsor Star on June 20th where he says he had already met Ted Nolan a couple of times, but don't really know him here.

Bottom Line:

I'm going to have to start saving the full articles again and keep all the quotes if the level of reporting is going to be this poor before all these links go outdated.

Again, if Snow and Nolan say there is a problem, I would have no issue with any of this, however when a fan like myself just following the articles/quotes can easily point out all these contradictions between writers at Newsday or outright mistakes it's more than fair again to question what is going on at Newsday with Greg Logan?

Now lets get down to business:
Are all coaches consulted on free agents, about moving down in the draft or about prospects? Maybe there is a legit problem there and a disconnect based on that and what Mr Botta wrote about or Garth Snow and Ted Nolan have their own way of working.

All organizations work differently and coaches generally do not know prospects. Or some coaches just want to coach what they are given and some general managers want to follow their plan.

I do not know what will happen from here. All I do know is Ted Nolan will be at prospects camp, if things become a problem there could be a change sooner than later but a lot of this stuff has not been fair to the club or it's fans and worst of all some of this Newsday speculation is contradicted by Newsday itself.

What was the point of any of this to open prospects camp in mid-July?

Early Poll Results show it will be tough for Nolan

New York Islander Fan Central | 7/12/2008 09:32:00 PM | | | | | | 1 Comments
I had a good feeling about this poll from the minute I thought of it and right now we have ourselves a heck of a fight.

Just shows how tough it's going to be on Ted Nolan, Garth Snow and most important the player who's on the fourth line. If you were coach/gm with a one year contract and had to play one of these players on your left side what would you care about most?

All I ask of everyone is if you decide to pick a player as your first line left wing, do not put the next player as your first line pick also. Make your lineup as if you were coaching and had to pick one player for each line.

It's fun looking at the early results as the votes for now suggest only Tambellini, Comeau or Bergenheim should be the first line center, only one voted for Sim to play with the first line veterans, most have him on the third of fourth line.

Everything else is wide open.

How did I vote?
Bergenheim was my first line left wing because he got in the corners and is the oldest with a good scoring touch, I think he has the most upside entering next season to have a breakout year.

Comeau was my second line left wing because I want him with Okposo on the right and his skills are maybe a year behind Bergenheim but is such a complete player and in three zones I do not want him any lower than my second line. A potential qusi/second line of Comeau-Comrie-Okposo should have a good impact.

Jon Sim was my third line left wing because he has produced at the NHL level and his speed should be a good fit with Sillinger-Hunter as a checking line.

Jeff Tambellini has to earn his spot and starts on my fourth line because I'm in this to win games and the other kids have had more impact. If I am coaching he is not handed a top six spot unless he outworks his competition and right now in my depth chart he has not been visible enough in games. He shows something for now he can challenge Sim's spot and get more minutes but a top six spot on my lineup is earned, not given out.

What do I mean by showing something? Creating some scoring chances and using his excellent hands and shot.

But that's only my take.

Remember the days we used to sign UFA? Not

New York Islander Fan Central | 7/12/2008 09:13:00 PM | Comment Here
I always find it funny reading all these folks in the media write no one wants to sign with New York despite all the quality veterans that have signed the last three years.

I though we should take a quick look back at how much better we used to do in UFA........NOT

No one even talked about the building in those days.
Wednesday, July 3 2003
Associated Press

DALLAS -- The Dallas Stars on Wednesday signed free-agent right wing
Bill Guerin to a five-year deal.

The Dallas Morning News is reporting that the deal was worth $45
million, deferring $4.5 million after the contract has expired. The
Boston Globe reported earlier this week that the Bruins made a last-
ditch effort to sign their star player with a two-year deal worth $18
million and Guerin turned it down.
Islanders Acquire Wiemer for Mezei
Gritty, Talented Young Winger Comes to LI
By Kerry Gwydir

(July 3) The Islanders continued the trend of adding grit, toughness
and talent this summer by acquiring center Jason Wiemer from the
Florida Panthers on Wednesday for defensive prospect Branislav Mezei.

"Jason is one of the toughest and hardest-working players in the
game," said Islanders general manager Mike Milbury. "We looked to
improve our team toughness this season and we have definitely done
that with young players like Wiemer, Arron Asham and Eric Godard.

"We also believe Wiemer is an excellent leader and two-way forward
who can play a lot of roles until Mike Peca returns to the lineup. We
will miss Branislav Mezei and we're completely confident that he's
going to be an excellent NHL defenseman, but this is a trade that
makes us better today and for years to come."

Along with the Draft Weekend additions of RW Arron Asham from
Montreal and RW Eric Godard from the Panthers, the Islanders have
addressed their desire to improve the club's size and toughness at
forward. Although he loved Mezei, Islanders head coach Peter
Laviolette is very happy about the deal.

"I've always liked the way Jason Wiemer plays the game," said
Laviolette. "He always goes with his heart first. He's always been a
very competitive guy that you want on your team in the heat of
battle. It's unfortunate to see Branislav go. He is going to be a
good player. But in order to get a good asset, you have to give up
something that has value."

Wiemer, a former 1994 first-round draft choice of the Tampa Bay
Lightning, is a tough-as-nails customer who established career highs
last season for assists (20), points (31), and PIM (178) while
popping home 11 goals. He notched a career-high with three assists on
Feb. 4 in a wild 6-6 tie vs. the Islanders.

"I'm excited to be a part of a winning team that also has such a
winning tradition," said Wiemer. "The moves ownership and the hockey
staff have made over the last year have turned the franchise around.
To go to battle with this team is going to be a lot of fun."

Although he is just 26-years old, Wiemer is a grizzled veteran at the
NHL level and played in his 500th NHL game on Feb. 7 at Tampa Bay.
The center broke into the NHL as an 18-year old with the Bolts during
the lockout-shortened 1994-95 season. There's no doubting the type of
character Wiemer brings to Long Island as a player who sticks up for
his teammates when the situation arises.

"I never enjoyed playing against him, so I'm sure I'll enjoy playing
with him," said Adrian Aucoin. "Wiemer is one of those players that
can do it all. He's gritty, he can score. I think Mez has a huge
upside. But when you want to improve now, you have to give to get a
player of Wiemer's caliber."

Said Dave Scatchard, who played junior with Wiemer in Portland of the
WHL: "Jason's a big, strong power forward that can do a little bit of
everything. He is a physical player that can use his body to change a
game around. He has good hands for a big guy and can drop the gloves
when the time comes."

In his last six seasons in the NHL, the 6-1, 225-pounder has managed
to accumulate at least 120 penalty minutes per season, including 355
combined in the past two seasons. His 168 hits on the Panthers in
2001-02 was fourth-best for Florida.

There's no doubt the Islanders' first-round playoff series vs. the
Toronto Maple Leafs that came to be known as a "War of Attrition"
demonstrated the Isles' need to improve its overall "bang" up front.
With Darcy Tucker taking out Mike Peca's knee and Gary Roberts
ramming Kenny Jonsson's head into the endboards in Game 5, General
Manager Mike Milbury sensed a need in the bulk department.

"As much as we'll miss Brano, Wiemer makes us a better and tougher
team," said Garth Snow. "He adds a lot of toughness and grit that is
a must on any winning team. You look at the Toronto series and the
way it transpired. I think that's a series Jason would have thrived

With Peca out first approximately the first half of the season while
recovering from knee and shoulder surgeries, Wiemer also is expected
to provide plenty of leadership for the Islanders as he's been an
assistant captain with Florida, the Calgary Flames and the Lightning.
In fact, Wiemer was named an assistant captain with the Bolts in just
his third season in the NHL as a 20-year old.

"Jason's been in the league for a long time. Particularly as young as
he is, it's a great addition," said Scatchard. "He knows what this
league is all about. From the number of years he's played in the NHL,
he's going to add leadership to the locker room."

And a mean edge. Wiemer was suspended seven games for butt-ending
Toronto's Darcy Tucker on Nov. 19, 2001 in Toronto. He also came
under some fire for proclaiming that he was going to pay back Darius
Kasparaitis for some of the new Rangers' questionable hits against
Wiemer's teammates.

It seems like destiny that Wiemer would become an Islander.

July 5, 2002 -- You've got to hand it to Islander fans. They will be

While NHL managers and agents have been hitting the phones this week
hard with the opening of the free-agent market, those making the most
noise may be the populace of Islander Country.

This past week, die-hard Isles fans have been calling and faxing the
Kingston, Ontario, office of Mike Gillis, Tony Amonte's agent.

They've been pitching the unrestricted's handlers the idea of playing
for the Isles with written and verbal fantasies on what the elite
right wing's presence could do for their beloved team. They've been
saying how his addition could boost the Isles to the next level a
season after dropping out of the first round of the playoffs and what
a great place Long Island is to live.

"It's flattering," Gillis told The Post yesterday.

Gillis said that he's conveyed the unique pleas to his client, who
continues to interest the Isles, as well as teams like the free-
spending Rangers, Stars, Sharks and the now-hated Leafs.

Isles fans, who have bought 11,000 season tickets for next year, have
never been ones to shy away from getting involved, turning the
Coliseum into one of the most electric cauldrons in the NHL.

Just last year they sparked Theo Fleury into flipping out and
flipping them off, which got the Rangers winger fined.

In the playoffs, fans surrounding the penalty box goaded Darcy Tucker
into shooting water at them.

Now, it appears, they are bringing a new dynamic to luring elite free
agents to consider their team.

Islander News Articles 7/12

New York Islander Fan Central | 7/11/2008 08:41:00 PM | | | | 4 Comments
Newsday: Greg Logan reports in the Islanders Newsday blog Sean Bergenheim fired both his agents
(Mark Gandler/Todd Diamond) this week and that General manager Garth Snow just began negotiations toward a contract with his new agent that could make an arbitration hearing unnecessary.

Mr Logan also reports Jeff Tambellini, Frans Nielsen, Jeremy Colliton, Ben Walter and Bruno Gervais have until 5 p.m. Tuesday 7/15 to accept their qualifying offers or negotiate a deal before those offers expire, also Garth Snow said he has deals beyond those initial offers for Tambellini/Gervais, expects to hold talks with Nielsen’s agent and that it’s expected Colliton and Walter will accept their initial offers.

After July 15th if an RFA is unsuccessful negotiating a contract or does not accept his qualifying offer the final option is a holdout.

Mr Logan also asked the Garth Snow if he has any interest in Ladislav Nagy or other unrestricted free agents but the gm did not rule out anything while the beatwriter does some speculating that Radulov's situation may open the door for the Isles to bring in Kirll Petrov.

NYI Fan Central Comments:
Fantastic update across the board from Mr Logan and a lot of information the fans want to know about.

I do not know what to take of Bergenheim firing his agents a few days after we had quotes from both of them. Apparently if they were fired earlier this week it had to be right after their comments appeared in Newsday.

Bottom line Bergenheim wants a better contract than he's offered and until it's settled, anything is possible regardless who his agent is.

As for the rest of the players we'll see how this pans out. If they do not come to terms it could open the door for pending trades and there will be players all over the league in the same spot.

New Poll: Make your left wing lineup

New York Islander Fan Central | 7/11/2008 06:28:00 PM | Comment Here
My thanks to everyone on the recent poll. Huge turnout for a mid-July poll and close to the record for votes overall. Majority had it at B or C when grading Garth Snow in free agency, no correct answer until they hit the ice.

I have been looking forward to this new poll for a few days.

I have done a lot of blogging on the left wings with my discussion that given the right side and center slots seemingly filled Comeau, Tambellini, Bergenheim and Jon Sim are the four left wings unless someone is injured or traded.

So our poll for this week is you play the role of Ted Nolan and decide who plays first, second, third of fourth line on the left side.

Ted Nolan and Garth Snow are likely looking at the final year of their contracts when they make these decisions also so they do have some pressure on them.

I think we should see some interesting voting here because the way this plays out someone will be on a fourth line who does not belong there.

This poll you can select several options but the majority will be our concensus picks by position.

New York younger in 08-09? I do not see it

New York Islander Fan Central | 7/11/2008 05:24:00 PM | 2 Comments
For all the things I have been reading about the Islanders getting younger next season or those who claim they are rebuilding I'm having a hard time seeing it in terms of 2008-09.

I can do the mix any way I like here and write Fedotenko will be replaced by Tambellini and Satan could be replaced by Okposo, but with Weight and Sim re-entering the mix for next season for Vasieck with room for maybe one player out of Colliton, Nielsen, Walter making it on the fourth line (unless a trade goes down) right now this forward group will be about the same collective age entering next season with Comeau on the club from day one.

On defense, Davison is gone with Berard and Johnson likely to follow. Mark Streit in his thirties was added. Only young defenders on the backline are Gervais and Campoli and both will be twenty four when the season starts.

If anything a few of the clubs in the division will feature younger lineups and be competitive with Pittsburgh heading the list with Crosby, Malkin and Staal.

A year from now we may see a lot more kids enter the mix for our team and sure there are a lot of good prospects in the system and Bridgeport with Hillen and Kohn but in terms of this coming season I think it's time to recognize this will still for the most part be an older club with an avgerage age close to thirty.

Of course it all comes down to can they score enough and skate well enough to compete.

Islander Notables

New York Islander Fan Central | 7/11/2008 03:49:00 PM | | | | | | Comment Here
Islanders website: Has an update on ticket sales with comments from said Executive Director of the Islanders Business Club Mike Bossy.

NYI Fan Central Comments:
They need that number to get to 10,000 somehow which seems impossible for all the hits they take in the media pushing them back two steps for every one step they try and take forward.

Islanders website: John Hill has the first update on the clubs prospect camp which will run from July 14th to July 18th with a partial list of the players attending. Bryan Trottier will be at the rink all week helping out the young Islanders, while Ken Morrow will be on-site from Wednesday to Friday with a number of media outlets on hand.

St Pete Times: Damian Cristodero blogs on the resignation of general manager Jay Feaster with his comments how he was left on the sidelines for all the recent moves by the Bolts after Tsn reports on the settlement of his contract terms here.

NYI Fan Central Comments:
Can you imagine the shockjocks in the local media and in Canada that would have killed Charles Wang in print if he pulled what Tampa Bay's new ownership just did? I did not see the writers down there trashing the club like we see here and that franchise is coming off a season they finished 30th that let the staff run everything at two of the most critical times of the year while it's gm was on the outside. Ryan Dixon does an article critical of the club in what he feels is an astonishingly sad series of moves with the latest signing 37-year-old Doug Weight over Kristian Huselius that signals an official organizational commitment to acquiring B-level talent, as he goes on to review the late nineties moves and takes numerous shots at the clubs impact in the region.

NYI Fan Central Comments:
Fine line for me including a writer and copy editor for THN magazine in with the main news media content but I'm not going to keep something off the blog just because it's negative about the club.

Having written that if Doug Weight was signed last summer statistically it would have been a good signing much less comparing it with Columbus signing Huselius and I did not read these shock jock tactics with regard to the Devils signing Holik. All this other stuff from almost a decade ago is completely worthless today with almost all of those players having moved on to multiple clubs since leaving New York and none of them with a cup ring to date.

Seemed to me like the writer needed the " what if " game just to make up for his current knowledge of the club and half of Yankee Stadium would have been filled with Yankee fans if the Islanders played an out of market team in an outdoor game.

Of course when Adam Proteau of the THN
here produced his worst signings in UFA Doug Weight did not make the list.

NYI Fan Central Comments:
If I recall correctly Fedotenko made this list a year ago from some writer, I do not remember if it was Adam Proteau. Likely Scott Burnside but what else would be new if it were him?

Fedotenko I believe got 2.5m from Pittsburgh.

Orange County Register: Dan Wood reports Brian Burke one day after suggesting that the NHL look into a potential Edmonton Oilers tampering violation regarding right wing Corey Perry, said Friday that the Ducks will file a formal charge with the league.

A day after all sides said they would respect the other leagues contracts Alexander Radulov under contract to the Nashville Predators signed with Ufa of the Russian Superleague here.

Predators Website/other outlets: Have a statement from Nashville gm David Poile and NHL Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly that Radulov is expected to be in Nashville next season and that the RHL is expected to abide by it's agreement made yesterday. Now lists Islanders defenseman Aaron Johnson with the Chicago BlackHawks.

NYI Fan Central Comments:
Aaron Johnson did a good job for the Isles when he was finally healthy, by all reports he was a classy individual and I hope he finds a team that will give him more minutes. Best of luck to Aaron Johnson.

Islander News Articles 7/11

New York Islander Fan Central | 7/10/2008 08:48:00 PM | | | | | 2 Comments
Newsday: Greg Logan had a blog update on prospect camp and reports Kirill Petrov, Stefan Ridderwall, Rhett Rakhshani and Aaron Ness will not be able to attend for various reasons. Assistant general manager Ryan Jankowski comments on Petrov's situation and the long-term plan.

Mr Logan is promising more updates in the coming days.

NYI Fan Central Comments:
Very good job here by Mr Logan finding out specific reasons for each players absence and making sure fans were updated as to today's announcement on negotiations regarding a future transfer agreement as well as Mr Jankowski telling us more about Petrov's status.

Fair to say the World Junior Championships will be a lot of fun for New York Islander Fans.

I guess the season over in the European leagues for some clubs is starting a week or two earlier than usual just as it seems the NHL season will be starting later given the pre-season games in Moncton.

Will be interesting to see if Figren is coming considering he is also slated to play in Europe. Reports Anaheim general manager Brian Burke had a measured response to Kevin Lowe's comments last week but did respond.

NYI Fan Central Comments:
Only thing I can write here is why did Kevin Lowe have to insult the fans in Anaheim and their media coverage? That to me is over the line and not called for because they did not create any problem with Kevin Lowe. Granted I favor Burke and wrote so the other day but still those people should not be thrown into that.

A few words on the blog box program

New York Islander Fan Central | 7/10/2008 04:54:00 PM | | Comment Here

Islanders website: Announced they are accepting applications for additions to their blog box program with what they are looking for with a little background.

NYI Fan Central Comments:
I know there are a lot of folks here reading this blog and some may expect here I may write something that's a lot of fluff praising the club because my blog was accepted last October/early Novemember.

Nothing would be further from the truth nor would I waste anyone's time doing a blog about it if that were the case.

One of the things I suggested to the club at the end of the season was to get as many folks as possible involved in the program and add as many bloggers as they can because it only helps grow the teams message.

I highly encourage anyone considering filing an application to do so because the folks involved with this program with the club have been nothing but first class, whether it be Mr Witt, Mr Botta, (now Mr Bernstein in some manner) or anyone else from the team.

As a person who does this blog from my own perspective they took my blog under the premise I would be doing it not as a participating member or someone who sits in the box but as someone who goes to games and does things my own way just as the other folks to a great job doing things their own way. I have no desire to become a journalists but feel this club needs as many New York Islander fans as possible to break into the business.

In my estimation there are a lot of great blogs out there beyond the other twelve that would be outstanding additions.

Whether I'm part of the blog box program moving forward is not a huge deal to me (even though the club said they intended to keep the link earlier) but what is important to know is these folks have been honest and up front from day one and if your on the fence about sending in an application I would highly recomend you do.

I would guess most of the other tweleve blog box members would feel the same but I'm sure they will tell your their own stories about this. I wanted to let you know where I stand if your considering sending in an application.

My only problem is seeing how many feeds I can add into the blog box widget at NYI Fan Central on the sidebar so you can get the latest from everyone but I promise I will find a way.....LOL

Islander/NHL Notables

Isles website:Posted the XM interview with Brendan Witt who appeared on XM Satellite Radio's "The Power Play" on Channel 204 NHL Home Ice, with Jim Tatti & Gary Green.

NYI Fan Central Comments:
Nice job by the Isles getting this for the fans. I do not have XM radio and thanks to them I got to listen to Witt give us a good interview where I learned about what he thinks about the club, we do not get nearly enough insights from the assistant captain.

Globe & Mail: Report Calgary Flames have announced former Islander Duane Sutter has been named as their director of player personnel with another former Islander Jamie McLennan has been appointment pro scout and director of goaltender development with comments from Darryl Sutter and Flames President & CEO Ken King.

NYI Fan Central Comments:
Congratulations to Duane Sutter and Jamie McLennan. Report the Vancouver Canucks have signed forward Pavol Demitra for two years/four million.

NYI Fan Central Comments:
Not much else out there in terms of those " name " free agents forwards unless were talking Sundin, Sakic, Shanahan, Selanne and of course Peter Forsberg. Not sure I left anyone else out but a lot of age/injury problems come into play with this group.

Globe & Mail: Eric Duhatschek/several media sources report the Columbus Blue Jackets have signed Nikita Filatov to a three year contract with the legal battle for his rights expected to begin with GM Scott Howson and NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly's comments. : Report on the talks regarding the transfer agreement with Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly representing the NHL, Executive Director Paul Kelly representing the NHLPA. The meeting was hosted and led by IIHF President René Fasel. Have more on the IIHF report that both sides will respect the others contracts with comments from Bill Daily, Rene Fassel & Paul Kelly. Russian league founder Alexander Medvedev also attended but left early with all sides expected to gather in New York on September 4th. Mark Seidel who is the chief scout for North American Central Scouting in his Hockey News blog gave the New York Islanders an A+ grade for their performance at the draft while pointing out some downside on Cory Trivino and Aaron Ness.

Other notables:
European here reports:
Rob Davison had signed with the Vancouver Canucks.
Former goaltending prospect Andy Chiodo has transferred to Dinamo Minsk.
Mike Morrison has transfered from Bridgeport to HDD Olimpija Ljubljana.

NYI Fan Central Comments:
Rob Davison for a player sitting for months in San Jose stepped in and did a good job after the trade deadline, rarely did he get beat or make mistakes.

I remember the folks going wild when Chiodo was not signed and actually made it to the NHL with Pittsburgh for a while.

With the signings of Mannino and Danis it seemed like a lock he would not be back in Bridgeport. I wonder where Mike Mole who was not qualified finds a spot?

Wataway News: Philip Paul-Martin has a feature on former Kitchner Rangers and UNB player (Rob Hennigar's team) Nathan O’Nabigon who Ted Nolan was impressed with according to the writer after watching him an an exhibition game last fall who is looking to make the jump to the AHL this fall.

What would I do? Trade Sillinger

New York Islander Fan Central | 7/10/2008 08:57:00 AM | | 3 Comments
I have been looking over the Isles roster for a while now and trying to make things work a little better in terms of providing a space for a Colliton or a Nielsen or a Ben Walter.

I have blogged on the left wing situation a lot and I cannot see any scenario if Bergenheim-Tambellini-Comeau-Sim are here and healthy they are not the four players in those spots in any place you want to play them, the one on the fourth line is not going to be satisfied.

On the right wing if Guerin, Hunter are healthy they are on this roster. I also do not see any scenario beyond injury Kyle Okposo does not start the season here unless he has a terrible camp or reports out of shape.

We all know Doug Weight and Mike Comrie are the first two centers if they are healthy and that Richard Park needs a place to play along with Andy Hilbert and a lot of the players I wrote about. Park made an impact and was outstanding shorthanded and just signed a two year contract in season.

Which brings me to Mike Sillinger going into the final season of his three year contract. Make no mistake this is a player I like a lot who when healthy and on his game can carry a team and win games outright even when he is not scoring with a lot of things that you will never read on a box score.

Having written that, his age, his production make it a viable question would it be better to shift one of the left wings to the third line center spot or one of the prospects in Colliton, Walter or Nielsen play in that spot?

Mike Sillinger if he is healthy in a trade will bring back a return that can help this roster now or in the future, combine that with some other players who seemingly do not have a spot and maybe one of those draft picks it could be a player that fills a need the club does not have on it's current roster.

Not an easy call for me to write this but I look at this lineup and there are too many veterans up front with Guerin, Weight, Sillinger, Comrie, Hunter, Park, Hilbert for a team going younger. Backline has plenty of veterans also so the idea Garth Snow will ice a prospect team is a bit over exaggerated. Even if you ship an Andy Hilbert to another club there are too many veterans holding spots up front to start the season.

One thing for sure is this club played a good part of the second half without Mike Sillinger, they did not win a lot but they did win six games in a row.

Tough call but If it were me I would take a chance here and make a trade to a club looking for a quality veteran. Sillinger could well prove me wrong with a twenty plus goal season but at this point Mike Sillinger is a player who just turned thirty seven, he scored seven even strength goals all season a year ago and was a minus ten with his only important pp goal of his three against Tampa in overtime and reportedly will be on crutches until August.

A lot of prospects can put up that production too, some who were drafted in 2003 and at a point they play or they move on.

Sure, if a Mike Comrie gets injured moving Sillinger could be a disaster with Doug Weight as your first line center and yes Comrie's track record is full of injuries.

With that lets get that announcement ready that the Isles signed Mike Sillinger thought 2010-2011.

So what would you do?

Islander News Articles 7/10

New York Islander Fan Central | 7/09/2008 11:13:00 PM | | | | | | Comment Here
Newsday: Greg Logan has a late blog interview with defenseman Brendan Witt where he says he was surprised because most teams do not make a decision on resigning until Christmas when they know where the club is going and the trade market is explored. In addition Witt acknowledges Garth Snow always complimented the way he played and appreciates the general manager and owner agreeing to resign him because it shows a lot of loyalty which he felt you do not find in major league sports and that he's honored by the clubs commitment.

With regard to his injury Witt says he has been working out since May, he’s running again and back to normal. On the clubs direction he was pleased with the addition of Streit and Weight and again credited the club's commitment to getting a solid defenseman who will contribute offense and feels Doug Weight will help the young kids develop.

On the players lost to free agency with their scoring Witt felt it's going to be interesting as he credited Okposo's late season play but that the club still may still be trying to add a couple of players before camp.

NYI Fan Central Comments:
Fantastic job by Brendan Witt and like the Streit interview the player was quoted a lot which we do not see enough of during the season. It's great to have a player like that here and more proof this talk about players not wanting to be here is just a lot of poor coverage.

Sure was interesting not reading the words Ted Nolan in there at that part where Mr Logan wrote Snow and Wang have come to understand his passion for winning and his commitment to the team very well indeed.

So where do I go from here being that two responses did not like when I held Mr Logan under the microscope recently?

Do I just write good interview and credit him for his blanket praise of Brendan Witt and hold back what I also got from reading this or do what I promised when I started this blog and put the hockey writers under the spotlight and ask questions?

Sorry, I'm going to do what I promised when I started this blog.

To me it seems like Mr Logan had to take a little dig at singling out Rick DiPietro for taking the bows with the goal scorers after wins. Was it necessary to phrase it that way because DiPietro also was around after losses?

One thing for sure I can write is Brendan Witt does not fly under the radar for being a defensive defender because the same thing happened with Jonsson, Martinek, Aucoin, Hamrlik and everyone else who was on the backline. Some of those players made the all-star team. Witt could have been an all-star last season but had no local media hyping his play so he did not get any consideration.

He easily could have gone over DiPietro.

Islanders website: Announced an open house this coming Saturday at 10am with Kyle Okposo and Blake Comeau comments they will be on hand.

NY Times: Jeff Z. Klein in the Times hockey blog links to reports from Russia Tuesday’s Sovietskiy Sport with KHL president and Gazprom export CEO Alexander Medvedev's comments he wants the Columbus Blue Jackets to compensate CSKA Moscow for Nikita Filatov and pay at least a half a million dollars or he will not be issued a transfer card.

NYI Fan Central Comments:
I guess Josh Bailey is looking a lot better after this. The new Russian league and the transfer agreement are almost becoming like another work stoppage in terms of players being shut out of playing where they want.

NY Times: Joshua Robinson has more on the sale of the Dragons.

Dragons sold/Scott Burnside double standard

New York Islander Fan Central | 7/09/2008 01:32:00 PM | | | | | | Comment Here
Long Island Business News: Henry E. Powderly II reports Charles Wang has sold the New York Dragons Arena Football Team to a New York investment group that will keep the team at the Nassau Coliseum.

Dragons Website: Has a release on the sale along with comments from the new owners.

NYI Fan Central Comments:
I read a year or so ago that Mr Wang was going to sell the Dragons but it is strange to see him sitting in the first row of the Wachovia center with Mr Dey and their families cheering for the club Saturday and a few short days later the team is sold.

If the Lighthouse is approved and renovations do actually happen at the Coliseumu in the summer it could displace the Dragons. I found it interesting the new owners first statements were they were going to market the club more to New York centric based audience which is something I have written about often for the New York Islanders.

Of course this is just speculation but it could also mean Mr Wang is clearing his assets in case the Lighthouse is not approved, anything is possible in that regard but he should be praised for bringing the team here from Iowa and putting a lot into running it going back to his early years as owner.

Updated 8:30pm
Newsday: John Jeansonne has a Newsday article on the sale of the Dragons. Reports former Islander captain Michael Peca has reassigned a one year contract worth 1.3m with the Columbus Blue Jackets. Report center Sergei Fedorov signed a one year extension with the Washington Capitals worth four million.

Espn: Scott Burnside does his usual negative Islander analysis in an article asking where the trends go for each club where he feels New York is going sideways, not up or down and refers to them as the NHL cockroach that you cannot get rid of despite all the stomping the media does on them.

NYI Fan Central Comments:
Only media covering the club on a regular basis is Newsday. Everything else is mostly writers like Mr Burnside who are too lazy to call the club up and do some actual work finding out what's going on so they throw anything against the wall hoping it sticks.

Mr Burnside to me (Mr Botta's comments notwithstanding) is kind of a joke with his reporting or plays favorites. He gives the Devils a favorable review partly based on Holik that he feels he could rebound while for the second time this week points out Doug Weight is an aging player on the downside after he writes his usual book report on the Rangers who of course trend up in his view despite the exodus from Msg and a team on paper not as good as the one that just left.

When it comes to Mr Burnside his reivew of Holik vs Weight is a joke and it's not about the color of the laundry for me but the facts, is it that hard to look at stats and do a fair review?

Again Doug Weight is not as old as Bobby Holik (by a few days) and Weight has outproduced Holik handily over the last three seasons even though they are virtually tied in goals (with Weight holding a significant edge in assists & plus/minus) but to Burnside only one player who can help their team?

That's non-sense.

Either both can help their teams or both are on the downside and aging. To write anything else is just a lazy effort from a writer who should confine his reviews to clubs he knows instead of giving us worthless fodder or Atlanta-based Burnside talks to former Thrasher Holik on more occasion.

When the games start Mr Burnside seems too busy to follow the Isles so he tempers his judgement only keeping the glass half empty writing they have no chance in the end, but during the summer that's when his laziness catches up with him and we get sloppy/poor journalism like this.

Media Blog: Cory Witt reports Brendan Witt will be on XM radio today at 5pm with the club rebroadcasting the interview on the Isles website.

Newsday reports Witt signs two year extension

New York Islander Fan Central | 7/08/2008 10:16:00 PM | | | 2 Comments

Newsday: Greg Logan reports in Newsday's Islander blog defenseman Brendan Witt has signed a two year contract extension with the club worth $6 million with his new contract running throught 2010-11 season. Reported Witt's signing earlier tonight without the numbers.

Islanders website: Reports the signing with comments from Garth Snow and Brendan Witt.

NYI Fan Central Comments:
For those keeping score at home that means Mr Witt will be here for the next three seasons with his 2.5m contract running for 2008-09 before this contract begins.

Seems Mr Witt has bought into the clubs long-term plans, that's a heck of a good signing considering what other defenders have been receiving.

Well done job by Islander management on this one. I kind of expected Sutton to replace Witt.

This seems to lock up a lot up almost the entire defense for the next two season and makes me wonder could the club shop Bruno Gervais with his restricted status or another defender unless someone is expected by out injured much longer than reported?

Chris Campoli was signed on 7/16 for those looking for a time frame or reference point with regard to contract signings.

Just to recap:
Witt-signed through 2010-11
Martinek-signed for next two years.
Sutton-signed for next two years.
Campoli-signed for next two years.
Meyer-signed for next two years.
Streit-signed for next five years.
Hillen-signed for next two years.
Kohn-signed through next season.

One thing for sure, this group needs depth because it's unlikely all six will stay healthy for long.

Updated 12:00am
Newsday: Greg Logan has an article for the paper on the Isles Masterson nominee being resigned by the club.

Poll Update: Garth Snow in UFA

New York Islander Fan Central | 7/08/2008 07:19:00 PM | 1 Comments
I seem to write this a lot when we do polls around here but once again the turnout and perspective of the folks visiting this blog never fail to impress me.

I voted as soon as I put up the poll and gave the general manger a C expecting a lot of D or F grades. I would guess part of that was the gm showing patience in making sure these kids have spots to earn training camp and not just signing Mark Streit.

Of course a year ago Doug Weight would project out to be a solid offensive signing, we better hope he just came off his Guerin-like thirteen goal campaign a few years ago or that signing could be a big time bust.

There is no right vote here and of course everyone is entitled to whatever view they like but I have to admit I was surprised to see so many give Garth Snow such a high grade.

Anywhere here is where we stand with a few days left:
A 7 (14%)

B 16 (34%)

C 21 (44%)

D 1 (2%)

F 1 (2%)

still not finished 1 (2%)

I do not start polls here unless they are for current hotbutton topics or something I think is very good.

I came up with a new poll for next week I think everyone will like a lot and is very good in my estimation.

Tambellini vs Comeau vs Bergenheim

New York Islander Fan Central | 7/08/2008 12:29:00 PM | 2 Comments
Let's assume for a moment things go accoring to plan, that Bergenheim has a signed contract, that he Comeau and Tambellini are all healthy entering camp in September.

It's kind of interesting to me how some may feel Jeff Tambellini must play on the first line next season with whoever the first line center or right wing is when the reality was he could not fight to get into high quality areas as all the prospects
(even Okposo) did on a regular basis.

Reality was Jeff Tambellini could not beat out Andy Hilbert who if Tambellini could match on defense and in the corners would be a dominating offense players off the chances Hilbert works for.

Having written this why is Ted Nolan (or any coach) going to give a top six spot to Tambellini after Bergenheim and Comeau were far more visible and productive than he was from the outset?

We can all write Tambellini needs a full shot but not over other prospects outplaying him and far more visible. This is going to be a competition and it's highly unlikely Jon Sim becomes a fourth line player.

We saw Tambellini called up in December to play with Comrie and Guerin as a
first line left wing, that line was pinned in it's own end of the ice for half the game and he was benched, the next day Tambellini was sent back to Bridgeport.

After Simon was traded and Tambellini recalled Comeau was shifted to right wing where he struggled until he moved back to left wing with Okposo's recall, why should Comeau change positions again if he is effective as a left wing?

For me right now Tambellini is on the outside looking in and he should be. He played over thirty games here last year and even with increased minutes at the end produced as little as he did two years earlier and on the season matched Tim Jackman's production.

Reality is Jeff Tambellini may only be a dominating AHL player. Jason Krog is, Mike Iggulden by the numbers has been and there are a lot of great AHL player who simply cannot get play at the same level in the NHL.

Reality also is Bergenheim is one of the hardest working forwards on this roster and what he brings will be critical which will have to include more scoring and that includes Comeau, those players are visible almost every game.

Numbers game here says until there is an injury and with so much competition for jobs Tambellini is in an uphill fight for a spot to displace Bergenhein or Comeau off left wing, any idea that he will be handed a job over either of those young players seems a reach at best and not in line with how any coach would do things.

This does not even bring left wing prospect Jesse Joensuu into the picture who could dispace Tambellini if he is the better NHL fit in camp and can create chances.

Ted Nolan two years ago said after returning from Bridgeport, Blake Comeau is the most complete NHL prospect he has, so far based on play that judgement has been correct.

Lots of competition, few answers.
Competition is a very good thing.

So what's ahead at NYI Fan Central?

New York Islander Fan Central | 7/08/2008 09:59:00 AM | 4 Comments

I will be taking a few days off here and there but between the pre-written blogs and the old updates from Islanders-Sound Tigers mailing list there will not be too many summer gaps in terms of updates here.

New York Islander Fan Central is a year-round blog. I work under the premise there is always something going on with this team on some level and of course I'm always looking to add things to the blog itself so you will see some changes as I find things that I think will improve this blog.

As for what's upcoming:
Prospect camp is next week, the Canadian Junior camp is coming up in late July with team USA camp in early August and about eight or more Islander prosects should be participating, no doubt there will be plenty of other things to write about.

In terms of the club's schedule which should be released by the end of this week I will change the schedule links and put back in the widget when it's released.

I will not be adding another message board for next season unless a lot of folks tell me they want one here which leaves it in my readers hands, if the response is as strong as the chat response it may become necessary.

I'm not sure how/if I can replace Mr Prospects updates without a board but if
possible or if he is interested maybe I can just find a way to give him limited access to posting in some manner otherwise I will have to come up with something so we have updates on our prospects statistics.

As I have written several times no one does this as well as he does.

Perhaps a link to each prospects team website under their primary profile, a lot of work but I can do that?

Of course folks are always welcome to contract me if you would like to add your blog or Islander-related website here. I have some basic criteria for adding a site nor will I do personal seperate blog entries to advertise anyone's work or talk about their content aside from crediting some folks efforts on rare occasion.

I do not comment on news articles unless it's from members of the Professional Hockey Writers Association or from the NHL itself for the same reasons no one should take my commentary here and treat it as professional insiders content because it's not.

Of course as always, comments, suggestions are always welcome as the e-mail is always open for you to contact New York Islander Fan Central.

My thanks to everyone.