If Intangibles go Isles way they make playoffs

New York Islander Fan Central | 9/08/2009 02:00:00 PM | Comment Here

What can I write that I have not written before before departing?

How about the Intangibles.

This is around the time so many worthless previews come put that don't even know the Isles lost close to a thousand games to injury mostly since January of 2008 or even report it. Do you really think they care about all the one-goal losses or blown leads?

Many of these writers don't write about four playoffs in five years before that and frankly don't care about that mediocre result (nor should it overplayed either) but will them portray them as a basement dwelling club as if they have not seen a playoff series as long as some other clubs in this league.

Many of these professional projections begin with the Milbury era or things of little/no consequence to the 09-10 season and it's because they don't follow our team enough to give us anything of relevance but have to write something.

You think most of these writers care DiPietro played sixty plus games the previous two years when they want to write about his contract?

It's not a knock on many writers either in some cases, they don't get enough space to follow their own local teams much less preview clubs they don't see play some years and sure in some cases the coverage is poor for a lot of reasons but that's old news.

If I had to do a Coyote preview I would be writing about Bob Francis or Winnipeg, how many years did Gretzky go before visiting the Coliseum as a head coach two season ago?

Rick DiPietro never went back to the city he was drafted in until 2008 to play a hockey game.

Scary how so many media folks and fans associate winning a playoff series with a successful season these days? Call me an older fan but winning a playoff series here never used to be any cause for celebration without a Stanley Cup.

But this is old news you know, time to move on.
I think on paper this team will be better than most will project, I see them in the playoff mix all the way if they are healthy if not qualifying outright.

But I wrote that last year which was a lost season before it even started.

For all sports some intangibles have to happen to be successful, the New York Islanders are frankly overdue in this department.

Last year only one intangible went huge in this teams favor and that was Mark Streit's defense and overall play.

Okposo drifting to left wing/center and his production was acceptable for a first full season as was Bergenheim's play after he and Scott Gordon got on the same page but I felt at times Okposo was cheating his natural right wing position by drifting to his left and center so much to get chances off his forehand, Scott Gordon after the season discussed why he was moved him to the left wing for a time and also had him on the left powerplay point.

Okposo has to score off his natural right wing side and what made him a top pick.

Aside from these things and maybe Witt getting back his full mobility after December, no single intangible really went the New York Islanders way all of last season unless you want to add some moderate progression from Bruno Gervais in how he played bigger and was more involved.

This time the intangibles have to be different, this time Bergenheim, Comeau, Nielsen and Jeff Tambellini have to carry their offensive weight after all the time they have gotten in the NHL despite Tambellini's benchings or Comeau being sent down. The veterans on the backline have to stay healthy or Jack Hillen/Andrew MacDonald/Calvin deHaan (if signed) or Mark Katic have to take their spots from them.

Yes, it starts with a mostly healthy roster or a manageable amount of injuries.

Yes, Trent Hunter has to get his twenty five goals and skate much better, Doug Weight has to produce at even strength and at times accept a lesser role, Richard Park has to have his hot streaks with a lesser role. Tim Jackman has to use that twenty goal ability he showed in Bridgeport and finish some of those chances his hard work created.

Yes, a Trevor Smith, Jesse Joensuu, Robin Figren, Matt Martin, Tomas Marcinko, Justin DiBenedetto or someone else does have to break through and make an unexpected impact if the chance comes for them or even Jon Sim if those forwards cannot produce.

Yes, Scott Gordon has to prove his system and methods can work with a healthy team at this level, break in a new coaching staff and somehow not put too much pressure on so many young players and has a huge task in front of him. I loved the coaches comments Bergenheim should not be worrying about scoring but when someone is drafted with a first pick in 2002 and your team is 29th is scoring of course you are going to worry about it and press.

Yes, the pressure on Tavares and to a lesser degree Josh Bailey without a prime scoring forward will be enormous especially if the club does not have a breakout offensive game.

Yes, Garth Snow is going to have to learn there are times where you have to make changes when some things simply are not working or holding back other players whether it be come waiver time before the season or to get his team out of a slump.

Yes, a lot of intangibles for this to work and for this club to be in contention. About a good seven out of every ten intangibles have to go in the Islanders favor this season with some surprises.

Last year one intangible worked out in the Islanders favor.

I know in sports sometimes you make your own breaks/intangibles.

Last year was not that time.

This time it not only has to happen but in many cases it should happen.

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Hockey in Seven Days...Final Closing at NYIFC

New York Islander Fan Central | 9/07/2009 06:35:00 PM | Comment Here

I guess to a degree I have been sending mixed signals about New York Islander Fan Central since last season ended, this was never my intention.

The New York Islanders have a hockey game in seven days against the Vancouver Canucks on September 14th with the club traveling to Saskatoon on 9/12.

Shockingly it will be televised on Time Warner at 10pm and repeated but will be the only pre-season game televised or at least scheduled at this time.

The Islanders half hour season preview debuts around 9/21-22 and runs only a half hour.

New York Islander Fan Central will not be covering the 2009-10 season.

If I wanted to keep things going here or even do this part-time I obviously could but I made my decision during last season and despite some blogging since 4/17, during the WC/NHL draft and some unexpected things happening like going audio for a brief time as an experiment (did not see that coming) I never changed my mind from what I decided in February.

Back on 7/29 I said it would be unfair to stop just before camp but I did extend things, left the blog viewable and the time went very quickly.

NYIFC did help what was a very quick summer go by even faster so it served a good purpose for everyone.
I have done everything I wanted to test here in the last month and no longer have any need to do any more written blog entries and I got a great deal accomplished.

A month ago when the blog went private for a part of a week I got a bunch of very kind e-mails asking me to keep NYIFC visible or to keep doing the blog as I did at the end of last season knowing it would be tougher to stop just as hockey begins.

I have tried to be extra generous posting preview links with the articles lately to set everyone up as best as I could for 2009-10 because you have been so great here.

Sadly, having written this when the New York Islanders leave for Saskatoon to officially begin the 2009-10 season NYIFC is finished entirely.

I have written additional blog entries after this one here in the interim that will be released before Friday because hockey is always the story but when the team departs for Saskatoon that will be the official end of NYIFC.

At that time I will also be setting both blogs to private permanently.

I do not intend to update these pages or the sidebars any longer so to leave NYIFC visible is to present something that is sloppy and not fair to anyone.

You can always visit what these pages looked like with internet archives or Google cache old entries if you want to keep finding links from these pages.

That's about it, as I have written a few times (or said by audio) the 4/17 entry was our real goodbye and one I cannot improve upon.

Of course, when the Minnesota Vikings come calling offering me twenty five million to do NYIFC over two years we'll be right back at it next week from Saskatoon.

What will I tell you? I took the money.

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NY Times is the problem, not New York Hockey

New York Islander Fan Central | 9/05/2009 05:34:00 PM | | | Comment Here

All the News that's fit to print?

Long time since we saw that mantra at the Times.

Amazing what you get on a labor day weekend for stories from papers who rarely attempt to cover home games, fail to come out to cover press conferences when coaches are hired or even when franchise players drafted have their initial press conference after 10,000 attend a draft party.

It sure does not apply to New York hockey any longer at this paper. Since Ron Dicker left the Isles beat rare Dave Caldwell game coverage and mostly hit and run articles all negative beyond the Sugden feature last year is about all we have seen unless you are counting that Mandarin broadcast feature by the Times.

The Times even had legendary dynasty writer George Vecesy surface on 5/23 to tell us it may just be hockey has come and gone on Long Island here while claiming the league's biggest money loser at the Garden going into the lockout in 2004 cutting back here is a money machine despite the same paper contradicting him and as late as August 2009 the NY Times is still reporting Msg losses from it's sports division here.

But on this day the Times came out of it's New York Islander coverage cave here here to do a feature about the Isles dwindling coverage written by Mark Messier's biographer Jeff Z. Klein.

His content included an insulting old quote from Jaromir Jagr but he did fairly recap what Mr Botta saw in his tenure with the club over twenty years and noted the draft turnout showed there were a lot more loyal Islanders supporters than most outside observers realized.

And the NY Times are outsiders now, by their own choice and this is where the problem lies.

An expert was brought in to question blog coverage content hired by a team but none of that applied to Chris Botta who won over folks with his honestly and viewpoint regardless if we agreed every day or not as he told his story about Point Blank along with team President Chris Dey who gave his side of why a former team employee was hired to write about the club and in the biggest news out of this article was quoted as saying:

" There might be an opportunity for another entrepreneur to cover the Islanders in a similar manner " which was really the only thing new from the article beyond Mr Botta's efforts to find a new home for Point Blank which he has discussed a few times recently.

Mr Botta and Mr Dey as expected did a very good job here and Mr Dey put it out there about the lack of media coverage as he needed to.

Bottom line here folks is the problem has never been the New York Islanders and it's not about any clubs record or what uniform they wore in 1996 because the Devils receive the same poor coverage regardless of how many Atlantic Division titles they win.

The Rangers have had coverage cuts also, but not nearly to the same degree.

Rangers-Islanders at Msg received only AP coverage this year from the Times (for at least one Msg game) and most Ranger road games were not covered, but the budget has been there for Mr Klein, Stu Heckel and Lynn Zinser to do many Ranger game articles and blog updates plus keep an updated European league page.

If that is the case there should be plenty of resources to cover all the local New York hockey teams regardless of record by blog or print.

This problem goes on the Times editor and their staff, a small part of it goes on a lot of Ranger fans on the print side controlling spin but all of this is old news.

This problem with the Times (and you can absolutely include Newsday, Daily News, Post and the Journal News, SI Advance) is all about selective coverage that says a lot more about their business practice and not the teams they cover.

Mr Botta's Point Blank proved the fan interest is there in New York Islander hockey so excuses by editors and sometimes the writers are about them and their own lack of knowledge.

The Times supposedly went to an SI format for all hockey teams not playing at Msg (likely because they need the Knick ad revenue) but again this goes to their judgment and not how a team performs or the Knicks would not be covered by anyone.

As for the Times, go back to a traditional format, cover all eighty two games from all three local teams and forget Europe.

New York hockey comes first and this is what New York hockey needs.

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Would I take Heatley on the Isles? Absolutely

New York Islander Fan Central | 9/04/2009 05:27:00 PM | | | Comment Here

Senators captain Daniel Alfredsson wants the situation with Dany Heatley settled and did not give him a ringing endorsement today so given the captain's comments combined with the Senators management making his trade demand public it's not a question of if but when he will be traded, Ottawa has a lot more money to pay someone who does not wish to play there and will remain a daily distraction until he departs.

I know the fans/management and a few other teams spoke out against having Heatley on their club and no doubt won no fans in Edmonton after refusing to waive his NTC to play for the Oilers.

Would Heatley waive his NTC to come here so the Canadian media and the New York media can bash him as they did Alexei Yashin unless became a Ranger so at least the Ranger fans in the limited New York hockey media can blame the Senators for his problems? Perhaps.

Bottom line Dany Heatley holds all the cards and can hold out for any team he wants and reject any trade, this was part of his contract agreement and he's entitled to force the Senators to trade him where he wants or keep paying him as long as he reports to camp which he says he will do.

As a general manager this is not all about courtesy class or signing good character people, it's about fielding a winning team and filling needs. If you recall I flat out wrote Garth Snow should claim Sean Avery and give him Nate Thompson's spot last year because it's about production and giving your team the best chance at winning.

Character players leave in UFA all the time or simply are not good enough to take a team to the next level.

Has Dany Heatley had enough of Ottawa he would be willing to play with John Tavares and could the Isles and Sens construct the kind of trade where the Isles do not give up anything significant from their future?

I don't know.

For myself, if Bryan Murray wants Heatley off the roster and is willing to deal with the Isles (and Heatley will accept such a trade) Trent Hunter is on the table with Richard Park or an Andy Sutton/Brendan Witt choice or they can have a second round pick or a Jeff Tambellini/Blake Comeau choice or perhaps one of the prospect defenders aside from deHaan but that's about it.

No first rounders or Okposo, Bailey, Tavares and I would even take Bergenheim and Nielsen off the table. If that's what Bryan Murray wants he can find another team to deal with.

If you are on Charles Wang's side of the trade you have to give back salary to balance out such a deal and know going in Heatley could want off his third NHL team at some point in the future.

Would I put Hunter, Sutton or Witt with some combination I mentioned to offset most of Heatley's salary while Bryan Murray can work a deal with Mike Comrie or sign another player? Yes.

I'm well aware of what Garth Snow thinks of Trent Hunter as he said on the NHLPA website late in July and I agree with Snow and Hunter is no doubt a class act and a big time character player who does a lot of things that do not appear on a score sheet to win a hockey game.

Having written that if there is a chance to improve on the ice and fill a need you have to take it, Hunter has had two very poor seasons offensively and off his fast start last season there was no excuse for such a falloff even with Frans Nielsen's injury.

Absolutely know going in Heatley without Alfredsson or Spezza may not be the same player coming to a roster with kids.

If Garth Snow is really interested in a Satan or inviting in Mark Parrish here it should be for Hunter's spot on right wing because that's where they fit best.

Having written this it's a risk I would take for a combination of the players I wrote about.

Would Heatley, Murray and Garth Snow agree? Stay tuned.

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Tsn Isles Preview: Lazy, Sloppy and Lacking

New York Islander Fan Central | 9/03/2009 07:25:00 PM | 4 Comments

Another example of why no one site or individual should preview thirty NHL teams would be the Tsn preview today released on the New York Islanders.

I would not want to attach my name to that either and simply would write staff who released this worthless preview of our club today which at first had the Isles at 15th in the Western Conference?

How much misinformation can a professional hockey website get wrong about New York's " First " hockey team? (could not resist a play on their words)

Did they even write anything of consequence about another player besides Tavares or go down the roster besides the poorly done " Slick Rick " comment about a goaltender who before last season started over sixty games his previous two years and was an all-star?

" Umpteenth knee injuries" would not describe DiPietro's career going into last season to any degree where he has missed any significant portions of a season.

Charles Wang never threatened to move the team to KC or anywhere and has made that clear on several occasions, all they got correct was his WFAN comment.

An article that's supposed to preview a team should include all the changes and man games lost to injury the previous season as a viable reason for it's struggles. I checked the Colorado preview and they did not bother doing this for the Avs either but their preview did tell us how many of their players will be UFA next summer?

Of course the New York Islanders could finish 15th in the East, it's no problem here to make that prediction but to present what was obviously a poorly done article even if the team was projected first is the problem.

That was just brutal and gave us nothing. I feel bad for Scott Cullen having to put his name to a fantasy preview behind that.

Lazy, Sloppy and Lacking performance by Tsn staff.

It will not be the last one either.
Nice interview by Katie Strang with Andy Sutton but to write the Mets debacle at CitiField is truly beyond comprehension with any other team in pro sports in terms of injuries is simply incorrect.

The Mets were not even close to the Islanders injuries problems last season which set a league record 580 plus games lost. (off the 402 games lost which led the NHL the previous year)

The Mets by comparison to the Islanders started the season relatively healthy while DiPietro, Sillinger, Comrie, Bailey could not play or tried to play hurt. The projected top six defenders over the six months played less than five games together as a unit.

Include Bill Guerin coming into camp off surgery and unable to play most of the preseason every single player on the roster sustained some sort or injury including Jeff Tambellini in camp last season.

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Islander-Sound Tiger-NHL Notables

New York Islander Fan Central | 9/02/2009 02:39:00 PM | | | | | | Comment Here

What a surprise (not) Roberto Luongo got a huge front-loaded deal that will pay him ten million dollars starting next season after his current contract expires.

What folks do not get is DiPietro's 4.5m deal (much less than Luongo) was not front loaded which is why he did leave a lot of money on the table because an injury, retirement or perhaps a buyout at some point in the future would cost him money that is basically going to be paid to Luongo earlier as he will have the bulk of his money.

Charles Wang and a lot of owners cannot afford front-loaded deals to where players get 10-20 million early in the contract complete with NTC. Many corporations can take that kind of huge loss on the books which was a loophole in the CBA that needs fixing but most individual owners cannot.
Which leads us to Paul Kelly being kicked out as NHLPA leader when that CBA is up in about two years. It will be interesting to see if the next person is militant and will want a league with many franchises losing money to simply absorb even more losses that should have a ceiling of about 40m and a floor of about 30m with no front loaded deals.

Pat Flatley resigned when Kelly was fired, I wonder if Glenn Healy will do the same and is the Heals and Flats show over at the NHLPA. I have no doubt if some players who were always about big money and making their own rules (Eric Lindros) are part of the next NHLPA leadership there will be another lockout.
Here's a real shocker for Islander fans in New York, a market where the media does actually pull for the home team despite a decade of losing had both local writers rip the Luongo deal today because the league questioned the Hossa deal by the hometown Blackhawks in the Chicago Daily Herald & Chicago Tribune.

When the Islanders sign players to long term deals Newsday usually leads the pack with criticism for the home team. Goes to show how some local media in some markets do protect their own team regardless of how long the contract is or for how many years.

What do you want me to write about Katie Strang? She is covering two teams and trying to give blog entries on the Islanders. That's her editor's choice if you are looking to place blame.

Don't worry, we have Mark Herrmann to cover the home team for Newsday (not the Isles) too bad our club does not receive that coverage for a player coming here off a poor season and it sure has been a while since the local paper had a word from John Tavares.
Congratulations and best of luck to Mr Botta for being added to Fanhouse, his feed and new site was added here for as long as NYIFC is visible, when he finds a new home for Point Blank that will be added as well.

Having written that his comments on Rob Hennigar to me were unfair writing his signing was brutally misguided and that he was a non-prospect. At the very least it required a lot more elaboration if he is going to make such claims.

Hennigar was the 2007-08 Canadian College Hockey Player of the Year and signed with an impressive resume here he put up some good numbers in Utah when he got adjusted to the next level and it's obvious another NHL organization had no problem taking a chance on him.

Hennigar deserved better from a man who a year ago at this time was lobbying to get rules changed so Brandon Sugden could play at the professional level and did such a classy job making his case the rules were waived so Sugden could return.

It should also be noted his recent entry on Charles Wang and honoring tradition was also unfair in a lot of ways. Whenever Wang brought back former teams all we got from Newsday was Wang was doing it to sell tickets and Jim Baumbach questioning whether Al Arbour's win should count which if he pulled that in a market with ten writers who were big time fans of the team they would have eaten Baumbach alive faster than Steve Zipay ripped Ranger fans for ignoring the Bathgate and Howell retirements.

Mr Wang tried to make up for a lot of things John Pickett failed to do and this organization has a lot of former Islanders working here. Bob Bourne should not be the only one in the new Islanders Hall of Fame but let's give Wang a little more time because two years ago he took criticism for Core of the Four Weekend which was absurd and now he takes criticism again?
So the Bridgeport Sound Tigers Vice President to Howard Saffan is Luke Milbury, who I would gather is the son of our former general manager being Mike Milbury has a son named Luke, why was this hidden from the public until today's release?

I guess to ask this question is to answer it by writing that may not go over very well at all considering all the cutbacks in the Islanders media department, even if he does an excellent job.
So the public comment period is over for the Lighthouse and it's down to the hearing, adopting a final scope which means x buildings go on x spot and then the zoning is approved or rejected with a vote. What are the fans needed for when they cannot speak or participate?

Especially when the team is basically shutting out any fan who does not live on Long Island?

Believe it or not folks, I actually believe the TOH did not know that was the date of the Kansas City game because most of these people could care less about the hockey team or name five players much less know their preseason schedule. If they really picked the date to bust Wang's chops it just tells me they don't want the project despite all the recent (election year) talk of working together.
Finally I am almost out of things to experiment with and will likely be done by the time the club hits the ice in Saskatoon. I also added Justin Bourne's THN feed to our media blog feed section with his link and many other professional writers added to the sidebar.

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Charles Wang needs an ESPN Zone

New York Islander Fan Central | 8/30/2009 11:14:00 AM | | | | | | Comment Here

Check out the new ESPN Chicago, the place for your local Chicago sports coverage.

Almost comical reading how many problems off the ice the Chicago Blackhawks had this summer yet Espn's Scott Burnside who in the past would rip all over the New York Islanders in print spun the story late Friday to mostly write about how good the team was getting quotes from management and the players here.

Martin Havlat's comments apparently did not make this puff piece which would have been the only quotes Burnside had if it were about the Islanders besides the usual ten year history that apparently would not help ESPN Chicago so it was not included here.

Chicago is a franchise that makes the four playoffs in five season Islanders on and off the ice look like an NHL dynasty compared to how brutal Chicago has been for close to a decade. Stan Bowman was not even asked about Havlat's comments or about how Dale Tallon was fired, er reassigned by Burnside.

What's the reality?

Charles Wang does not have an Espn Chicago for his team and for Espn/Burnside to rip on the Hawks is not good for business so a summer that would have brought out the laughingstock tag for many NHL franchises by this writer in the past instead brought us quotes from management, players defending the Hawks and hyping their Stanley Cup status despite the circus like moves and off ice issues from management to players.

All about business folks for Espn Chicago and Scott Burnside journalist did a good job working like a member of the Hawks PR department and the Espn Chicago sales department.

Meanwhile in Philadelphia we have former Inquirer and long time Flyers writer Tim Panaccio blaming Mike Babcock for the latest Simon Gagne groin injury here and then goes on to note how the Senators media is giving Dany Heatley the Yashin treatment.

Seems like every team but the New York Islanders has people in the professional media willing to sell the product.

Fear not folks, if Heatley becomes a New York Islander (and approves such a deal) our local media will be killing Charles Wang and Garth Snow for adding a player of such questionable character however if he was traded to the other local NHL team the same media will be blaming the Senators daily for how he was mishandled and telling Heatley's story.

Not hitting this too hard but if Nikita Fliatov's comments were accurate in translation he did not sign with a KHL team (despite a signed NHL contract) as long as he is given NHL playing time Garth Snow and Ryan Jankowski made the right decision not to draft him.

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Tribute to Mike Sillinger

New York Islander Fan Central | 8/26/2009 01:18:00 PM | Comment Here
One of the very first entries here was the picture of Sillinger's goal at the end of that incredible game against Pittsburgh so I put that image on the sidebar.

This is his final NHL goal scored last season in what turned out to be his final NHL game.

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Depth Chart/Injury Policy/Rico Updates

New York Islander Fan Central | 8/25/2009 11:11:00 PM | Comment Here

The goaltending depth chart for those trying to keep up.

New York:
Rick DiPietro
Dwayne Roloson
Martin Biron-Never knew he was the brother of former Islander Mathieu

Mikko Koskinen-Will play in the Isles minor league system this year.
Scott Munroe
Nate Lawson
Parker Van Buskirk-Signed Monday 8/24 by Utah
Dov Grumet Morris-Signed 8/31 by Utah

Joel Martin signed with Odessa on 7/14/2009

Anders Nilsson
Jase Weslosky-See link posted here on his recent status change which makes his signing unlikely according to asst gm Ryan Jankowski's comments.
Stefan Ridderwall
Kevin Poulin-Was in Bridgeport last last season and prospect camp in July.

It should also be noted Peter Mannino's first year out of college was his last with the Islanders organization after taking Dubielewicz path to the pro ranks and is now a Thrasher.
What do I think of DiPietro's recovery and the recent announcements?

I think it was un-necessary (with good intentions) and exactly the distraction DiPietro wanted to avoid considering in a week or two the team will report and we will get our answers anyway about what he can or cannot do by how/if he practices.

This comes down to the doctors timetable with his recovery, not the player so DiPietro and the Islanders are caught in the middle also because they are not doctors and it's beyond their control.

His time table could be day by day so releasing any schedule as to when he could play may be getting way ahead of ourselves.

The doctor spoke last January and said another surgery was remote after six weeks of doing nothing was first announced but it appears remote did happen which means he's back where he was a year ago give or take a month as frustrating as that is for everyone.

Did he rush back? Who knows what he told the doctors or what they told him he could do on a daily basis. I cannot fault him for trying if he was told he could play, many other players in this league perform with injury and have to play through pain as part of recovery.

How many players with knee injuries who miss a year (usually ACL-MCL surgery) have we been told hit a wall and need two years? We saw this with Martinek, Peca, Nokelainen and who knows if it was a factor for Jon Sim in 2008-09?

Obviously with two veteran goaltenders here there is no rush but the idea now has to be make sure he has the best chance to return healthy because it's fair to write by the Isles actions they have made plans if this surgery is not successful to move on without him.
And now for the usual rehashing I did several times last season on the injury policy.

The New York Islanders last year were the only team that tried to follow a league mandated policy decided during the finals (by all the clubs) that were bullied out of it daily with relentless assaults from our limited media like they were not allowed to follow the league adapted policy I saw followed in Pittsburgh, Detroit and several other NHL markets.

I guess when you lead the league in injuries it goes with the territory.

Mr Logan/Newsday staff, Mr Botta did not let up on the team for following league policy and much of it centered around DiPietro. Mike Sillinger did not get this kind of scrutiny and in a lot of ways has had a similar kind of last two seasons with a different kind of injury as we saw with Bates.

I'm not a big fan of the public must know everything mantra about someone's health, our players stories are rarely told when they are healthy in this very limited hockey media market, if more coverage is needed that's where it should start from the professional print media.

When someone is ready to play and we see them skating that's when we'll know they are ready and all the updates in the world does not change that.

Bottom line when you lose 582 man games to injury which I believe was a league record and have 402 man games lost the previous year which also led the league it's not going to be an easy process with injury information.

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Final State of Lighthouse

New York Islander Fan Central | 8/23/2009 09:52:00 AM | | Comment Here

Soon we are going to get into that approved, not approved mantra we saw in other markets with each twist and turn or Islanders saved, Islanders will move with every scrap of news.

I'm not interested in that and will not even waste a test blog on it after this one.

What do you want me to write about the coverage I have not written before?

When Newsday's Eden Laikin makes mistakes (or the editor cuts her article) she seems to never make mistakes on both sides. I saw all the articles where after events this writer portrayed it like only Islander fans were at events and supporting this project with only hockey fan interviews.

Now we get an article where all the submissions were not included for both sides again omitting the ones in favor of the project?

Newsday has a business blog to include how many folks favor or do not approve of the LH regardless of what the numbers are, please get it right.
As for the project updates and deadlines it's up to the LH people working for Wang-Rechler to let the public know what's happening as they are the only official sites regarding this project with the professional media.

Only deadline we seem to get thrown at us is Charles Wang's, not a mandated deadline for zoning hearing/vote or how long TOH can wait to submit their own final draft of the project which places x buildings on x spot and is the final plan.

My take is it's time to turn the pressure up on Tom Suozzi and Nassau County.

Mr Suozzi's role in the past eight years where the County Executive's talk has been cheap has also done a fine job lately telling us no project, no Islanders which is total garbage and a cop out he has gotten a complete pass for as he passes the buck and the blame to TOH.

The day after Wang's deadline Suozzi better be the first one to say Wang has his lease until 2015 and he will not be let out of it under any circumstances. Nassau taxpayers now have to pay to renovate or replace the Coliseum immediately and pay for a full immediate Smg buyout and condemnation of the lease to make the facility profitable for whoever owns the hockey team along with revenue from other Coliseum events.

That's what every other team in the area got for a new building, that's what thirty plus years of this franchise has earned along with Charles Wang's efforts since he bought the club, not no Lighthouse, no Islanders.

I understand for now it's all about selling the project and getting it approved (so Suozzi can get away with that and use it as leverage) but it does not hide what Nassau-Suozzi has failed to do since he took office which is another reason this project became necessary.

It's a wonderful project as I have written countless times and completely favor because a parking lot is not surburbia but approved or not it does not excuse what led us to this point.

Bottom line.

Nassau gave Smg this lease, Nassau is completely responsible to repair, renovate and replace Nassau Coliseum. I know Tom Gulotta handed whoever owns the Isles this nightmare deal which happened in Pittsburgh but Suozzi's done nothing (other than his worthless proclamation in 2002) but make Wang wait until 2005 to even select him and Rechler as a developer and afterwards sat on his hands two more years before TOH got the project.

As much as there is to legitimately blame TOH for during tthis time there is much more to blame on Nassau County who after 2015 will have to go directly to the taxpayers to keep the building open if the Isles did leave at that time.

Forty odd days until Tom Suozzi has to break the bad news, that Nassau has to pay up sooner or later (sure he can blame TOH or Tom Gulotta) and he waited too many years to get things moving. Until then he better be pushing for this project like his career depends on it daily if necessary to get hearings and zoning votes scheduled and approved.

Newsday did report Mr Suozzi's lease with Wang is ninety nine percent done, why is it not a hundred percent done because that's the out on the lease and he's had all this time to complete that hurdle and announce it to put on even more pressure?

Starting the day after Wang's deadline I want to see some " Just condemn the Smg lease " shirts out there.

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Anything possible for New York in 09-10

New York Islander Fan Central | 8/23/2009 07:37:00 AM | Comment Here

I have to see this group play some games healthy before I can dismiss anything, including the New York Islanders winning the Atlantic given some of the weaknesses of the other clubs in the division.

I'm not expecting any answers in preseason which for the most part is get together for a quick skate or two, fly to camp and than start playing games beginning on 9/14 or a day or two after gathering at Iceworks.

That six day stretch between the Coliseum preseason game and the Prudential center game is really the place Scott Gordon will have the most time to work with his players.

No one should really care what media still talking 90's and Milbury project because they can't name five current Islanders. Those same people had the Canes at the bottom of the league coming out of the lockout and they won the cup.

A brief review of the last two seasons and more importantly last year suggest the Isles can compete in this division based on head to head games.

I know the Isles and Pens are a lot different today but two years ago the Isles opened 9-0 against the Rangers-Devils, they played Pittsburgh eight times, won three lost the Simon stomp game by a pp goal, the bounce off Witt for a one goal loss, a 53 shot game for a loss and I think Joey MacDonald lost a late season game in Pittsburgh.

I did not see a team that was outclassed on the ice aside from the Flyers special teams.
I saw nothing in 24 games against the Rangers, Devils, Flyers or Pens last season that told me they absolutely could not compete with them aside from the keystone cops game in Pittsburgh which was a lot more about the Isles.

Isles played three Coliseum games against Pittsburgh last year. They led 4-1 before over speed and the Pens talent won the game, next time the Isles climbed to within a period of five hundred and again just collapsed with a big lead in the third before losing a shootout and won in Dan Bylsma's debut in the final game.

That, to me is not a team with no chance that is over matched.

That seven goal game against the Devils tells me they can compete with them and the Isles for the most part outplayed the Rangers in games with a lot of callups in the lineup even in games the Ranger trap prevailed where even some media reported the Islanders outplayed the Rangers. MacDonald blew that game at the Garden they lost 5-4 with some terrible third period goals against which was the exception.

Flyers powerplay and shorthanded teams have just killed the Isles the last two years, even in that series the Isles got games to overtime and played them close. It seemed like a a Darroll Powe or someone not expected to score did the biggest damage in some games.

I know that second Carolina game stands out but less than two weeks earlier in the same building the Isles scored four second period goals and the Canes looked horrible before the LaRose show took over and the Isles gave it right back along with two points.

I absolutely think anything is possible for the 2009-10 New York Islanders.

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Isles can't compete in Atlantic, say's who?

New York Islander Fan Central | 8/19/2009 10:54:00 AM | Comment Here

I know I did an entry like this a year ago.......

Someone has to explain to me how Pittsburgh is better with it's chemistry altered on the backline with the changes they made plus Crosby expected to post incredible numbers over eighty two games with Guerin and Chris Kunitz?

Malkin I expect will have another incredible season (Staal needs to step it up big time) with mediocre talents like Fedotenko while not resigning Sykora or Satan to date and I'm well aware Malkin may be the Pens best player and can carry that team for long stretches and will see time on a line with Crosby.

It's possible with everyone a year older and in some cases better with help from their younger players in the system, but having written that signing Mike Rupp, Jay McKee and Brent Johnson do not exactly impress me and Gill will never be better than he was for Pittsburgh and there is the loss of Scuderi who was this teams second best defender in the playoffs.

On paper in August this team seems weaker than the one that was in tenth at the trade deadline last year but Crosby, Malkin and Staal a year older compensate for that to a degree and make everyone better around them.

Can Bill Guerin play eighty two games at a level he played down the stretch for Pittsburgh? I'm skeptical because he had a lot of no-show games here and the honeymoon will be ending for Dan Bylsma.

Michel Terrien could not have been completely wrong last year but I Sergei Gonchar will not be out half the season either this time to open the year.

M.A Fleury is a goaltender selected first over who has now been to two straight finals, winning a game seven on the road. What happens if he does take the next step in his progression?
Flyers in goal right now hardly scare me with Ray Emery an explosion waiting to happen, Paul Holmgren really dumped Martin Biron and Antero Nittymaki for Brian Boucher?

Chris Pronger is a great player but this is his first time in the East (since Hartford) with some significant mileage and they paid a ton to get him. He had some great support in Anaheim he will not have with the Flyers despite how good Timonen and Coburn are but the rest of that group is not impressive with choices between Randy Jones, Matt Carle, Ryan Parent or Ole-Kristian Tollefsen who they signed.

Flyers have still have not replaced Knuble and Asham-Ian Laperriere are not going to score but they have a deep offensive club when healthy which is not a given. How long before Daniel Briere breaks down?

I see the same club that looks unbeatable for stretches or helpless for others with John Stevens seemingly always on the hot seat during a losing streak. Why the Flyers never make a big push for a franchise goaltender I will never understand.
Devils losing Gionta, Rupp and Madden with Holik's retirement and only resigning Shanahan plus adding Yann Danis hardly look vastly improved but you never under estimate the Devils system or their management.

I'm not intimidated by a defense led by Johnny Oduya, Paul Martin, Andy Greene, Mike Mottau but going from Sutter back to Lamoriello is asking a great deal even for New Jersey because that's a big philosophy change.

The Devils also landed former Islander Rob Davison to shoot at Toskala and Cory Murphy from Florida.

Will Brian Rolston be happy to see his former coach from Minnesota? The numbers say yes.

Absolutely expect Parise, Zajac to be a year better and for Lamoriello to have prospects ready to step in and produce, that's what New Jersey does and why they are always a top level regular season team.

Elias is coming off his best season in years and remains durable.

For those counting the Devils out, you simply have not learned this organization has always been about more than one or two players, last season proved that better than any other.
Are the Rangers better? On paper it seems everyone they brought in is coming off a down season no matter how it's packaged as improvement. It could work but there are a few trends that do standout.

This could be a much more injury prone group changing systems.

Derek Morris and Paul Mara gone for Matt Gilroy on a team that will change it's trap defense under the latest coach that scored only nine more goals than the Isles a year ago? That's going to force Henrik Lundqvist to face thirty shots and not allow for his four goal on fourteen shot stretches and the kind of nightly pressure he failed to handle against Washington.

Tick, tick, tick goes Avery, Brashear and Tortorlla, who will explode first in that room?

I like their late round prospects in Ryan Callahan and Brandon Dubuinsky better than their early picks but with a forty point total the later is not a rising star until he produces as such.

Marian Gaborik in the rougher Eastern Conference might work but he's going to pay a physical price here he did not pay in Minnesota. At some point he will be given a prime veteran center to take the burden off him.

This could work but again the players brought in all come off injured or seasons where they regressed, some will improve, others will not.
Bottom line:
All these teams could be a great deal better or worse but in August at this time there is nothing that stands out and says anyone will absolutely will be better.

Someone by default will be better.

Next up I'm going to do an entry on the Isles recent record against Atlantic Division teams and why they should be able to compete with them.

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2009-10 Islanders Can Make Playoffs......IF

New York Islander Fan Central | 8/18/2009 11:00:00 AM | Comment Here

For all that went wrong it was one heck of a struggle to finish dead last a year ago.

The way some folks write about the team they finished 30th by twenty points and it was clinched by November 15th.

When you add in the injuries, one-goal losses and the early blown leads in the end it took a horrible December & January and even that was not enough to guarantee anything until the final games.

Colorado went from a playoff spot to almost finishing 30th very quickly in a dramatic free fall.

If the man games lost to injury got the play the Coliseum did more folks would understand that this season is different from a year ago.

That's the good news which any semblance of health should help fix to a degree.

Bad news is this is not the same team with veteran scorers like Comrie, Guerin, or Sillinger that kept them in contention until injuries caught up with them in March 2008.

It's also not Ted Nolan's team who had them in contention both seasons.

There is really no place to hide for Bergenheim, Nielsen, Tambellini and Comeau at this point in their career. Being here and having good games will not be enough anymore, the production also has to follow from those players that were drafted in 02,03,04.

That's not even counting on absolutely needing production from Bailey, Tavares, or Okposo at a point we are asking a great deal from them and Okposo not scoring off his natural right wing side last season.

Without any doubt Hunter and Weight have to produce offensively or both should be moved. I know Garth Snow praised Hunter recently on the NHLPA website but he has had two poor offensive years in a row despite all the other things he does and has not been the same player since 2004 with his knee on knee with Sean Brown.

Doug Weight has to score at even strength or he is not the right player for this roster.

If these players do not score it leads right back to the same trap which is counting on Richard Park to score. Park has been everything and more as an Islander but expecting him to lead the team and score on a regular basis is asking for too much.

Then you start looking around at the kids plus Tim Jackman and everyone is wondering where the next goal is coming from?

I'm not concerned with the physical department as so many are and there is always another Andrew Peters to be signed as the UFA told the Buffalo News Monday.

Between Jackman, Rechlicz, Sutton, Witt this roster has a few players who can win a fight or two.

Snow could sign anyone among a bunch of players for the fight by appointment.

Bottom line John Tavares is not skating on a line with Joel Rechlicz and will take his hits just like Crosby did not skate on a line with Eric Godard. This is all part of the process and no fight by appointment is going to fix this and there are no more Clark Gillies in this league to score thirty, fight and play on the top line.

It's also fair to lay it on the line with the defenders and the head coach.

If Andy Sutton, Freddy Meyer and maybe even Radek Martinek cannot stay healthy it's time to give the job to someone who can.

Career trends do not lie for some of these players. Brendan Witt did stay in the lineup and got his mobility back around December after his third knee injury in the calendar year.

Individually they are good defenders when healthy, we have to see some chemistry develop and with the farm system changes will be coming. Andrew MacDonald, Mark Katic and even Dustin Kohn could get a look before another veteran depth signing plus Hillen is on a one-way contract so he will beat out someone or wait for an injury with the Islanders.

Mark Streit needs a repeat season and will need to do it hopefully in a playoff race under real pressure.

A huge question remains if Scott Gordon's system works at this level.

How Witt reacted and how Gordon changed system last year was notable and begs the question if the coach is not doing what he does best what can he do because a big reason he was hired is now compromised? A lot of good AHL coaches systems and tactics simply do not work at this level. Gordon also seemed to react poorly on Danis or other players at times and his I like goalies to finish what they start comment did not match the record in Providence.

Plus if any of these coaches were Gordon's hirings the Isles website or the media did not indicate that. Snow was the only one who commented and hiring a coach-gm from another organization is never a good sign.

Hopefully Gordon had input or a part of the hiring process because year one he had someone else's staff.

Still the two-year trend goes all the way back to Al Arbour, coaches do not last three years here that's something this coach has to be thinkng about too.

You got another blog entry. I got a new flash player, sidebar backgrounds, I'm quietly getting a lot done here. I only wish I had learned these things when the blog was still going daily but I will put up a little hockey content to test the changes.

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New Background USA Camp Ends

New York Islander Fan Central | 8/15/2009 10:02:00 PM | | | | | | | Comment Here
Saturday 8/15 Final game at Lake Placid Team USA won 6-0 with Aaron Ness and
Matt Donovan against Russian Isles prospect Anton Klementyev.

Camp concluded Saturday.

Team USA Page (above) provided camp updates and box scores of these games.

Katie Strang in Islanders Newsday blog (Rss still down for all blogs at Newsday) had
assistant gm Ryan Jankowski's comments on Ness-Donovan.

Hockey Canada.ca: Had their Developmental Camp last week which included Travis
Hamonic and Calvin deHaan.

It took a full year but finally the page borders are perfectly centered and extend
to the top of the blog.

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Ice Background, Hockey Content

New York Islander Fan Central | 8/13/2009 09:58:00 PM | | | Comment Here

Friday's test code is a new ice background for something I'm working on elsewhere but for some hockey filler just to write anything I found it funny the Canadian/Toronto media did not go hard after Leafs owner Richard Peddie's deposition which Jim Balsillie wanted from the league which the judge in Arizona is not going to allow.

Mr Balsillie also wants team finances going back several years including how several teams in one market apparently do in ticket sales, revenue and not just worthless Forbes estimates which you can bet means New York market.

Why do I have the feeling if Mr Balsillie wanted Wang's deposition the Canadian or Leaf media would be relentless and tell us about the Isles struggles on the ice, the Jacobs family in Boston got a little rip job from the Canadian writers too, but not the Leafs after forty plus years without even appearing in a final?

These publishes/editors/writers know who pays the bills up there and provide advertising and you can bet the Leafs are one big reason such a move will not happen which all these writers are crying for as they bash the Arizona market daily, so why not put some blame on Richard Peddie.

Don't bite the hand that feeds you.

Seems those Long Island papers Friday had some serious opposition to the Lighthouse, questioning EIS on water despite seemingly daily floods all over New York, size of project and scaling back things and how other businesses are already hurting for customers. One paper the other day asked how much is the current empty parking lot hurting the drainage system?

I never knew a barren parking lot was considered suburbia by so many.

When the public comment period ends after Monday then things will really get down to business because there is nothing left for TOH but to sit down with Wang-Rechler and what if anything they will have to do for approval or is that hundred foot high wall that has killed every plan for twenty years about to come into view?

If that happens I don't want to hear anything from Tom Suozzi but how the taxpayers now pay for an Smg buyout immediately and a brand new Nassau Coliseum plus an announcement this team will never be moved regardless of who owns it. NYC in the early eighties gave Msg an eighteen million dollar exemption (about triple both teams payroll back then) and tons of perks like low-cost electricity for the Garden to keep their teams from moving. NYC handed the Yankees and Mets millions/billions for their ballparks with permanent revenue streams and full ownership of the facilities.

Either Tom Suozzi get's this project approved or taxpayers pay up and he breaks the bad news.

Talk has been cheap since he took office and he let this sit for years before and after a developer was selected. He can blame Tom Gulotta or anyone he wants but it's his job now to make the New York Islanders a business that can have a chance to be profitable for whoever owns this hockey team in the future and solve this problem if he cannot get LH approval or the TOH in line.

It got solved in Pittsburgh so it can be solved here with no Lighthouse.

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I guess you want my reaction on Mr Logan ?

New York Islander Fan Central | 8/12/2009 10:03:00 PM | | Comment Here
I added some thoughts to this thread to be as fair as possible Friday night and edited a few items also because in my haste to experiment with codes and colors I did not do a very good job on this entry and I was not as fair with Mr Logan as I should have been.

I'm sorry about that and apologize to Mr Logan and the folks who read the earlier entry.
All due respect to Greg Logan however I'm not sorry to hear of his departure from the Islanders beat which Mr Botta broke and Katie Strang confirmed.

No doubt this is the right move for everyone involved in my estimation.

Mr Logan is a professional writer with over thirty years experience and it was never his fault he was not a die-hard passionate New York Islander Fan. The job did not require him to be but fair or not that's what this team desperately needed which made him a bad choice from day one.

I started NYIFC with the viewpoint he did an excellent job his first year.

In the end Mr Logan was simply a case of wrong writer, team and perhaps most of all the wrong era for what was required.

For the same reason it could mean Katie Strang is not the right person either.

Alan Hahn was a die hard Islander fan and things did not end well there either with Mr Botta in April 2006 critical of Newsday coverage. Back before blogs he did a few mailbags a year but in those days Mr Hahn wrote a column for the Sporting news. Peter Botte wrote for faceoff.com on the Isles and if I recall did THN publication reports.

Cutbacks finished all these things for hockey.

That passion I wrote about (above) is how Marc Berman in the Post used to write about this club which you saw recently in a rare article. That's how Peter Botte covered the team for years when given proper space at the Daily News and that's what George Vecsey used to give us at the NY Times long ago (with countless other writers over decades) and what Mr Botta has given us at Point Blank over two years and why he has made the connection he has with the fans.

Larry Brooks right or wrong goes all out for his team, his passion is always there.

Let me add all those veteran writers I am praising here never had to blog several times a day in a 24/7 media world now and Mr Brooks has a web editor or someone to do many of the NY Post blog updates. Newsday did not provide Mr Logan any help on a daily basis in that department and when he hit the road he was alone.

Then again it has to be mentioned how someone like Michael Fornabaio did interviews by telephone when the Ct Post did not let him go to Norfolk or the West Coast/Canada last season or blog with everything he could about a game and he's been the Sound Tigers writer since day one. He has had to change how he does things too and in the AHL there are few plane rides with three games in three days often. Some may recall Mr Fornabaio's auto accident a few years ago so it does not seem like he has a seat on the bus for road games. Mr Logan was not happy about traveling problems to Edmonton from Colorado one season.

Mr Botta If I recall praised Mr Logan and how he got from Buffalo to Philadelphia for an interview one season.

But that passion has been missing at Newsday under Mr Logan for our team. Was this a fair standard to ask of him? Perhaps not.

Maybe if this team had four daily beatwriters like it used to things would not have been so noticeable.

Some things however were noticeable that go beyond him to the sports department.

I saw our team outblogged by a good five to one ratio by the Ranger counterpart in Mr Zipay at Newsday which sports editor Hank Winnicki (or whoever makes such decisions) should have immediately recognized doubling and even tripling up Islander coverage to supplement the dwindling city space cutting down or outright eliminating Ranger coverage.

At the very least Mr Winnicki (if he had the final call/whoever did) should have switched Mr Logan, a former Ranger beatwriter who appeared on Msg specials back to his former assignment with Steve Zipay moving to the Islander beat.

Mr Logan never seemed to make any attempt to make up the disparity from the city publications with his Newsday blog space.

Is that a lot to ask on my part? Perhaps, however for passionate professional writers about a subject it's something you feel obligated to do. For a veteran writer from a different generation like Mr Logan blogging is new and more work to do with news breaking at all hours.

There is all the traveling plus a life outside of his assignment.

The point is other teams have that level of information or print space, our team did not.

I wrote game previews and home/road coverage almost every day and I could see the differences between Islander coverage and other clubs whether it be Tarik El-Bashir in Washington, George Richards in Florida or Mr Zipay in the local paper.

We saw it in Newsday too.

Steve Zipay would go cover his team during vacation or on off-days, Mr Logan did a few times and put off vacation when Scott Gordon was hired last August. He also had a lot more comp time he told us he had to take which included long stretches of the season two years ago which he is entitled to like everyone else employed but as a fan it is frustrating to see less coverage.

Newsday opened an NHL blog for Mark Herrmann which had one Islander update and nothing else for close to a month early. Arthur Staple was switched to hockey, Islander coverage did not pick up (Ranger coverage did) and not nearly enough features.

Mr Logan's fault? Absolutely not.

I would suggest change does not mean enhanced coverage which we heard a decade ago when Sportchannel became Fox Sports Net and now Msg+ whatever. We'll see if the Newsday peripheral writers like Mr Herrmann, Baumbach or Rieber do a few rip jobs on the club which will let us know who was really behind this change.

What else do you want me to repeat again?

That even before Cablevision bought the paper the staff was made up of former Ranger beatwriters and admitted fans who kept the glass half filled on one club and empty on the other and now that Cablevision owns the paper the writers never are critical of the teams they own but go off on other teams in this market.

Old news.

Having written that Mr Logan at times stepped up his reporting (I remember how he ran down Ryan Smyth in a Minnesota airport after the trade here and got an interview late at night) and did a lot of outstanding features with the kids plus kept pace with the weekly insider but seemed to work hardest on the negative angles whether it be anonymous quotes on coaches or comments on DiPietro's maturity and health that were over the top in my estimation and stood out too.

Mr Logan's complaints regarding the NHL injury policy (from league meeting at finals) led to outright daily assaults for a while from the Newsday staff about the Isles which no team with injuries in North America had to endure from their local media here that I saw as out of line which began that June when Mr Logan learned of Guerin-DiPietro summer surgeries,. Perhaps his intention was to provide us information but other teams were not treated like this for following the same league policy.

Mr Logan got it wrong on draft day and called it wrong on other things? Get over it, he did not have to share anything.

You want someone who is generous and tries to give us more whether it's right or wrong in the end, that's where he failed most in my estimation. How many times did Mr Zipay ask his readers questions or ask for input to keep conversation going or suggest a player for his team?

How often did Mr Logan?

My Thanks and best of luck to Greg Logan whatever sport or beat he is assigned who many have told me is a gentleman.

You would be completely mistaken thinking my criticism of him was personal or beyond NY Islander hockey content. I only wish I could have praised his work more.

Bottom line:

I'm someone who wrote an amateur fan blog about my favorite team, it's easy for me to sit on the sidelines and second guess but what I saw from other teams and writers was impossible for me to ignore because our team needed the same thing and there were fair content questions I tried to ask here along the level of a Sandomir, Mushnick, Best or Raissman with my own hockey content.

This blog did daily articles as part of it's function.

Mr Logan has been a professional writer for over thirty years on an entirely different level covering several sports and has earned respect from the professional media across the board for coverage.

That's who Greg Logan is and it is something we all should respect.

I would like to see Mr Logan get assigned something he is passionate about but that is likely beyond his control like most writers. Our beatwriter from a decade ago at Newsday (John Valenti) now does the weather.

Finally for those who think it's impossible to find life-long New York Islander Fans in the professional media today I submit the 8/12 New York Daily News feature here.

You asked, I told and you even got another entry to read.

I got to try out another code for better reading while not changing everything on the side bars but still private or public blog no excuses at all for me doing such a poor initial entry.

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