Today is the day New York Islander fans will know who likely is going to start the season here on Saturday.
This is the roster deadline, however in some ways today feels like March deadline, with so many players on waivers combined with clubs needing to cut players/salary, this day has taken on far more significance with the new cap restrictions.
No folks, you can't stand pat with twenty six players and keep quiet, twenty three by 3pm.
Players signed in summer, hyped for their ability are on waivers or could be heading to the AHL or another club, based only on practices and a handful of exhibition games. Dave Andrews may be wondering if AHL needs a hard cap by the end of tomorrow.
On paper New York needs to cut three player, or place them on an IR list that already includes Schremp, Streit and Kyle Okposo.
Matt Martin, Calvin deHaan, Nino Neiderreiter would not have to clear waivers, Gervais, Jurcina, Gillies, Hillen, Parenteau would have to clear waivers along with Jon Sim.
On paper, twenty three reads nice and meets the requirement, however it also means three players sit in the stands every game.
Of course, the injuries pile up here, that's a given. A few years ago Berard, Bergeron, Aaron Johnson (cut by Nashville) sat and waited their turn, in a short time all three were playing or hurt, more defenders were signed.
Miroslav Satan signed a game by game contract in KHL, Bill Guerin with his twenty goals at age thirty nine wants to continue his career. One of his best friends is on this team as captain, you can bet he is lobbying all parties to bring back the former captain.
A player could be claimed off waivers, trades/signings could still happen after 3pm tomorrow. On paper, I did not see games/practices, however one thing for sure is Parenteau did not have Matt Moulson's statistical preseason from a year ago.
Every move this team made from sending Niederreiter to Quebec/acquiring Michael Grabner suggests Niederreiter or Parenteau will not be here.
Niederreiter is almost a year younger than Tavares/Bailey were as rookies, while Okposo started his draft year in school, it's not the same thing.
Unless a game is set up to be about fights, Jon Sim is a better alternative than Trevor Gillies. Matt Martin demonstrates potential that suggest he could be the best fit, however Sim outscored Hunter and Nielsen a year ago, plus he stands out with his hard work/physical game.
It also means Joensuu/several prospects could not take his spot which is not a good sign.
On defense, Garth Snow is faced with what I believe is the toughest decisions of his managerial career to date.
Unless the plan is to work in Hamonic and deHaan next fall, one or both will still be on the outside in two years.
How do you sign Jurcina in summer and then not use him for the final preseason contest on a club that only had three days of games using Anders Eriksson? Is this the end for Bruno Gervais? The decision to sign Mike Mottau changed the playing field, he was a Devil regular and will be in this lineup with his two year contract.
Where does Jack Hillen fit this defense given the progress he has shown?
I know I want Ryan Parent claimed by the Islanders. If it means both Gervais or Jurcina demoted so be it. Nashville got him back and moved him, he spoke to the teams website on 10/1 about returning to Nashville before being traded again Tuesday.
I cannot envision any scenario short of a franchise offensive talent being imported via trade where Andrew MacDonald is not on this team. Even with James Wisniewski here for one season, MacDonald is the player who best emulates Streit's overall game on offense and defense.
Everything I read in this camp once again suggests Radek Martinek (even with his injury history) is a player who has demonstrated his defensive game cannot be replaced. This is the day I believe we will get an answer to that question as he enters the final year of his contract.
Today may be anti-climatic, however it could very well go the other way.
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