7/31/13

New York Adds ECHL Affiliate

New York Islander Fan Central | 7/31/2013 03:32:00 PM
Stockton Thunder: Announced they have entered into an affiliation with Islanders/Sound Tigers with Garth Snow's comments. 

Former Islander Rich Kromm was recently named head coach. This franchise named a new president on 7/9/13.

8/1/13: Recordnet: Explains how affiliation happened.
The Islanders contacted the Thunder on July 16, the day after Kromm was hired. Kromm said he received a call from New York assistant general manager Kerry Gwydir.

"Kerry wanted to know what we had planned and at the time I told him that I wasn't sure what was going on with the Oilers," Kromm said. "After the situation with the Oilers was settled, I called back. Kerry and I talked about what each side wanted and found out we were very compatible."
Kromm said the plan is for the Islanders to send five players to Stockton, of which one will be a goaltender. Injuries, trades, signings and other issues could affect that number.

NYIFC Comments:
Given many NHL teams did not have an affiliation, mildly surprising given New York did not have one last season.

I did check the other day to see if one of the many teams changing affiliations included the Islanders. 

California is not moving closer to New York which is where the Islanders need an affiliate. Utah, Kalamazoo (became Devils affiliate after Islanders),  and likely Stockton is not a permanent solution which may extend to Ct at some future point to retain a team at Webster Bank Arena. 

7/29/13

New York Roster Update

New York Islander Fan Central | 7/29/2013 06:59:00 AM
As always expect competition for jobs straight through training camp.

The European signings (or lack thereof) could mean some players may be getting invited to New York Islanders training camp....or it's likely some spots could be from promotions within.

Virtually no one signed at this point is getting much more than the minimum, it is a waiting game, some players will find themselves out of the NHL entirely. Chris Campoli (who went unsigned last year) signed in Swiss league.

Garth Snow was not shy about having plenty of depth waiting to play after years of rosters decimated by injury during the 48 game whatever you want to call it.  Snow's never been shy about having three goaltending prospects share two spots.  

Recap:
Mark Streit/Radek Martinek: Replaced by no one at NHL level, perhaps that comes from Matt Donovan, Griffin Reinhart, Aaron Ness, Calvin deHaan or another prospect. Joe Finley is a signed player at the NHL level. Matt Carkner has stretches where he is unplayable.

The long list of defenders who need to be signed by 6/1/14 suggests development will have to happen fast because the list of NHL defenders signed for at least two seasons (Visnovsky, Strait, Hickey, Carkner, Hamonic) mean there are only so many roster spots available, with the Islanders likely wanting to retain Andrew MacDonald. 

A poor first half likely means Nabokov, Visnovsky (NTC) are traded by December, that was Snow's trend with Dwayne Roloson, and James Wisniewski.

Brad Boyes, Keith Aucoin, Marty Reasoner, Nino Niederreiter, David Ullstrom, Jesse Joensuu: Replaced by Pierre-Marc Bouchard, Peter Regin. Cal Clutterbuck with a list that again possibly includes Brock Nelson, Ryan Strome, Johan Sundstrom, John Persson, and Anders Lee, Kirill Kabanov among others.  

In goal it's Evgeny Nabokov, likely Kevin Poulin. Anders Nilsson at the AHL level with Ken Reiter having earned a promotion. Secondary AHL goaltending (not even considering the Islanders drafted prospect depth) suggest this is not a concern. A college prospect named Parker Milner claims on twitter he's part of the Islanders-Sound Tigers organizations with no professional confirmation by the organization or a part of the clubs prospect camp that needed a second goalie for the prospect game.

College players have to pay their own way to attend NHL prospect camps, many invited do so. 

New York (like many teams) at this time does not have an official ECHL affiliate, but found a home for Reiter, Jason Clark during last season at a time there was no NHL.  




7/26/13

NYI Own All NHL Territorial Rights To Brooklyn, Queens, Nassau, Suffolk

New York Islander Fan Central | 7/26/2013 11:20:00 PM
The New York Islanders paid a four million dollar territorial rights fees to join the NHL in 1972. In 1986 an amendment was added to include Brooklyn, Queens, Nassau, and Suffolk.

This means no other NHL team can move into that territory for the same reason Bruce Ratner could not construct an arena in Manhattan then decide to move the Nets there.

Whether the Islanders play in the Barclay's Center,  Nassau Coliseum, or if a faclity was agreed to in Queens or Suffolk does not change this.

Of course it would be fun to see Ratner win the rights to construct a new Penn Station, and a New York Islander Live Zone on Msg IV grave in ten years, but that's for another time. 

Obviously territorial rights do not apply to the AHL, as we'll learn soon enough. 

The Knicks do have territorial rights on Long Island as of 2001 unless Alan Hahn got it wrong because the Nets were the host preseason team against the Knicks at the Coliseum the day the Islanders announced their move to Brooklyn. 

The Nets had to pay Msg four million dollars twice, once to join the NBA at Nassau Coliseum, then another four million to move into New Jersey with lawsuits flying here.

In 1996 Dolan needed Nets approval to become sole owner of the Knicks, so he signed away the territorial rights to Brooklyn here which is how the Barclay's center became a reality. 

The Devils had to pay the Islanders, and Flyers territorial rights fees to move from Colorado to New Jersey here, that meant when the Devils relocated to Newark from East Rutherford they did not have to pay another team for moving inside their established territory because they had already done so.

Bottom line it's the New York Islanders in Nassau, Suffolk, Queens, Brooklyn. No other NHL team can play a regular season NHL game there unless the Islanders leave the area entirely, and sign away the territorial rights.
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Is there one paper/editorial in NYC willing to report all that taxpayer exemption money Msg has received since 1982 to go with the 200m for the 1990 Msg renovation is why Dolan renovated to keep that 16.5 million dollar growing check coming in perpetuity each year because even moving across the street meant the exemption was forfeit?

I guess those publications need their Msg ad money. 

I bet all that taxpayer revenue could have created a lot more full time jobs in New York City, and revenue for NYC than a sporting event.

Of course Charles Wang & his predecessors did not get a check every year from Nassau County for owning the New York Islanders. Our teams owners got no revenue from parking, concessions, had to give up eleven percent of it's ticket sales, and forty percent of it's advertising revenue to Smg, plus pay Nassau County rent while Wang renovated an arena he did not own, ending all past litigation with Smg from the time he became co-owner. 

Then Wang got the added privilege of spending his own money to replace scoreboards, add matrix boards, weight rooms that flooded, update the lockeroom/players area, with his share of 20m/over 200 meetings with Scott Rechler for the Lighthouse.

Smg in Dec 2009 gave Wang the added privilege of spending another 17m of his money (3.5m through 2015) to finally get his ticket money, parking, concessions, and advertising.

Many wrote that was a free gift.


7/17/13

Where's The New York Islander Full Time Independent Professional Media in 2013?

New York Islander Fan Central | 7/17/2013 06:50:00 PM
The answer to this question would be the New York Islanders have no professional full-time independent media in 2013.

The team does not make any real usage of it's website to report it's own news first or refuse to go in that direction even with Charles Wang not shy about speaking about why he's doing something to outlets who will not pay anyone full-time to cover his team. 

Those canned ITV interviews with direct quotes do not go very far. Sure a good job was done at the prospect game by the club.

Re-Tweeting  Articles & Showing Up Only For Three Islander Games Is Not Professional Coverage: 
Of course this never stopped some fringe media like Larry Brooks, Brett Cyrgalis, or Katie Strang from claiming they cover the Islanders beyond a few rip jobs from a far when the Rangers are not the opposition.

By that logic the Islanders are covered by beat-writers from the all-knowing Vancouver media too. 


So What Should I Read?
As I wrote the true professional media value left is the small town papers with direct quotes from players, when the Islanders hit the west coach they were covered better than they are in New York.

In other words, there's virtually no professional media value....Sorry. 

Problem Getting Worse:
I wrote the New York Islanders have the worst professional media of any major sports team in North America last year. The gap is only growing. In 1999-2000, when Islanders-Sound Tigers began the club had full time coverage in four professional newspapers. By 2007, when New York Islander Fan Central started the club had home game coverage in three papers during the regular season, one on the road at best.

Then by 2008 the same Msg that controls the television coverage, got full control of the print coverage.

Former failed media relations coordinators that claimed this would increase Islander coverage were wrong as usual while the pay-wall went up. (which NY Times also has done for a second time)

The Times had budget money to send Ranger die-hard Jeff Z Klein to go interview Cody Rosen, not to report he was in Flyers prospect camp the year before the Islanders drafted him?

There is always a Mike Sielski lurking for a selective hit-job on the club, not so much for a feature on John Tavares.  

The same New York City outlets too cheap to cover the club, were quick to put out editorials telling the pubic no taxpayer dollars for a new/renovated Coliseum, but waved the ad dollar pom poms for NYC teams getting taxpayer funded baseball stadiums often which also happened in New Jersey.

To be fair there were contrary articles in those same papers quick to point out no taxpayer dollars in-between the ones that claimed private financing.

No one from those outlet's are discussing the New York Islanders story, unless it's something with an overt negative tone. Yes, the same outlets that demanded Wang pay for his own Coliseum, feel James Dolan deserves a taxpayer exemption every year in perpetuity with an operating permit for Msg because his arena generates jobs/revenue for NYC.

Like the Islanders at the Coliseum never have? 

The Devils: 
The Devils still have a newspaper or two in New Jersey separate of Msg, the Post was too cheap to hire a full time replacement for overt negative, Mark (Neverson) Everson after going to the Stanley Cup finals, but their business reporter is quick to discuss their finances.

Sure the Devils have big media problems too. Lou Lamoriello never took the easy way out, and went the blogger route with his media relations department. 

Dolan's Newspaper:
No folks, I do not see the employees at James Dolan's paper as people who personally dislike the New York Islanders or who live to make our teams fans miserable which includes Dolan who even said in 1994 the other day he was rooting for the Islanders, but no doubt wants his Msg Coliseum, and the 300m in television money he pays the Islanders to finance it by them leaving New York entirely.

However let's be clear the employees working there need a job, and write what they are told to write if they wish to stay employed like any other publication where there are unwritten rules. There are countless articles on problems inside Dolan's Newspaper from employees themsevles to countless sports media bias questions.

The New York Islanders one full time professional media outlet is owned by another NHL team, the current beatwriter one of many long-time former Ranger beat writers  (Logan,  Herrmann, Jeansonne, Zipay, Best)  who only shows his passion when he's assigned as an extra to discuss the Rangers is never shy to remind everyone who's their selective choice for number one hockey team in New York.

The disparity between pay-walled blog entries do not lie at Msg-owned Newsday either. 

The last full time Islanders writer employed by Tribune-owned Newsday, who never covered the Rangers,  pulled no punches on Msg the year before James Dolan became Alan Hahn's boss. Now he sells the Knicks as hard as Al Trautwig.


“Some of the things they practice here are completely against what you’d expect a normal team to do,” said Mr. Hahn, a second-year reporter on the beat who said that he now misses his old job as a hockey reporter covering the provincial New York Islanders. “They come up with things all the time. There’s zero access to players. They would rather you don’t even write.”

I could post a hundred links with quotes, and have over the years. 

New York Islander Fan Central In 2007: 
In those days it was easy to do a daily digest of professional newspaper information which was done until April 2009. Today a search is filtered down to garbage unprofessional fan blogs that have no business being listed in any professional news search. 
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Ct Post:
The Ct Post has dramatically cut the Sound Tigers coverage from 2002 to 2007, through today where Michael Fornabaio went from west coast road trips in the early days, to barely being allowed to travel on many road trips in conference any longer.

He's allowed to call from home, and the team accommodates him with the coaches/player quotes on the road games. A practice unfortunately not used at the NHL level.  
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Brett Yormark: 
I hope he's smart enough to tell all self-serving bloggers, message board owners, or fan websites that the New York Islanders fans officially speak with one voice, and everyone has an equal one. No official message boards inherited from the real owners who started it, no amateur bloggers selling themselves on websites.

I suggested to Yormark he start his own site, and release all Islander business news directly first. I'm skeptical to his ability given his possible brand changes or the lack of success of his brother in Florida.
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Notice Me, Follow Me, RT Me, Get You're Information Here On Our Site/Message Board?
 
Accept No Substitute For Professional Media:
I've seen this self-serving garbage since 1999 with the pancake bunch  before Wang-Kumar purchase, there is always a bunch of people out there desperate to get something from the New York Islanders to serve their own end or hold themselves out as people who represent the fans.

Nothing could be a bigger lie.

Sadly many fan bloggers playing professional are all out there only selling themselves, and their own ambition that frankly is kind of pathetic but representative of what things have deteriorated to.

And this is with a team 30th in attendance. 

Those individuals are desperate to get noticed, they will write anything, and shamelessly self-promote themselves everywhere.  Our hockey team is never their true priority, but a lot of fans desperate to accept anything with a professional media giving them nothing can no longer tell the difference. 

My advice to is tell them to stop selling themselves, and encourage everyone never to read them or their worthless self-promoting message boards or blogs.  They desperately need you, not the other way around.

How sad is it my 30th replacement moderator since June 2006 at HF now has to shameless plug for readers on twitter all day long. Not that I wanted to notice but three times in an hour every other day? 

Next thing the amateur fans claiming they are professional at WFAN/CBS/SNY who will not spend money on accredited professionals can stop spamming themselves all day long between re tweeting professional media or speculating.
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New York Islander Fan Central Special Comment:
The next time I tell anyone to follow anything I write, re-tweet anything I post or follow this website will be the first time ever. I do not want your ad money offers, interviews or page-views.

I never left my blogger hosted website to go join a site with other writers to self-promote myself, never would sit in a blog box seat for free, and if anyone recalls my entries from joining the Isles blog box, what I would have told SI or Newday if they showed up to cover bloggers because they were too cheap to cover our hockey team in the first place. 

I want nothing from anyone (and never have) which makes it very easy to pull no punches. As I wrote recently if Charles Wang e-mailed he would be told to speak with his customers directly himself on his website, and not contact me. 

Why did I write all this? Someone has to at least try.  You look around cyberspace/twitter, and it's like one big pathetic infomercial for a bunch of self-serving phonies desperate for personal attention but could care less about the New York Islanders aside from what they can get out of them.

Long ago those kind of people had no forum, no NHL team would acknowledge their existence, there was too much professional media to laugh them away. Some NHL teams (most in Canada) would also never gain any traction there. 
 
Are some of the younger folks out there reading this really that naive? 
No source/phony report required-Tell these ambulance chasers take a hike, the New York Islander brand requires full time professional coverage in Newspapers, not you or certainly..... not me.

Reality is I no longer care to write much at all. I made it clear sticks/pucks were getting boring with names changing but peripheral topics the same even before the lockout.

But I never have pulled punches, when something needs to be written, I do it. 

7/16/13

New York's Draft Class Of 2008 Downgraded From Home Run To Very Strong

New York Islander Fan Central | 7/16/2013 08:39:00 PM
The class of 2008 could be called the first full opportunity for management under Garth Snow's tenure to evaluate prospects.

With amateur scout Ryan Jankowski out of Montreal for hockey canada (no announcement on Habs website to date or notice from any former team blogger/employee) and only one listing of Jankowski at all  in 2010 here,  it's getting closer to a final grade on the class of 2008.

Turned out there were some big misses too.

We all know the people's choice on draft night 2008, Nikita Filatov, did not resign a five year contract with Columbus this week like Josh Bailey, or that a traded pick in this draft translated to Travis Hamonic (drafted after Ness) who was just resigned for seven years. That alone makes for a very strong showing.

Corey Trivino-Turned out to be a bust as a second rounder, but some of that goes on players own personal circumstances after he was drafted. The former second rounder spent 2012-13 in the ECHL with solid numbers, like Mark Streit, many ECHL players made the NHL. 

Aaron Ness-Did leave Minnesota, and had a solid statistical season for Bridgeport, what he also has is an enormous task ahead to stand out, and win a roster spot in a system packed with defense/size. His offensive upside/skating is his best asset.

David Toews-Turned out to be a bust for New York, playing for three different ECHL clubs in 2012-13, where he was claimed by one off waivers.

Jyri Niemi-Big kid, Islanders training camp where he played juniors, was traded to Rangers, who did not retain him after signing him, bust for a third round pick.

Kirill Petrov-The saga continues of his coming to sign here, he's again an UFA in 2013-14. Time is running out to even care regardless.

Matt Donovan-The pick that can elevate this draft back to home run status permanently. His numbers cannot be missed out of Bridgeport, but the goals allowed, his very early benching after game one means he's not a lock, but overall his size, offensive ability will likely mean a very look look in camp.

Kevin Poulin-This is the year that tells us if he can break through as an NHL goaltender, despite his numbers on a weak Bridgeport club. This can go either way with a real chance he could perform as a starter at this level. There have been enough short stretches he looked more than capable as a starter here, but not in 2012-13.

Matt Martin-Despite the hit numbers, character player, he has to become the player he was in Sarnia, and start producing. Sure it's an excellent pick regardless, but he has to project out to be better than a fourth line role player with a minus rating.

Jared Spurgeon-Garth Snow's big miss, the prospect unsigned who became what Snow has tried to find in Hickey, Strait, Finley, Martinek II, and many others who flat out were not as versatile. There was no rush of teams competing for Spurgeon when he was not signed, he simply went to Wild camp, it was a perfect fit, and he never looked back.

It was exactly what was needed here for Mark Streit.

Justin DiBenedetto-Islanders did qualify him for 2012-13, but not this time around, so this high-scoring AHL pick, who only had an eight game NHL look (with concussion problems) has to be labeled a bust for them.



7/15/13

New York Signs Josh Bailey For Five Years

New York Islander Fan Central | 7/15/2013 01:47:00 PM
Islanders website: Announced today that Josh Bailey has agreed to terms on a five-year deal.

“Josh has become an important member of the young core of the players we have in our dressing room,” Islanders General Manager Garth Snow said. “We’re excited to come to terms with him on a deal that will ensure he is a member of this team as we solidify ourselves as consistent playoff contenders.”

Islanders website: Also had a few words from Bailey
 “Obviously I’m very excited,” Bailey said. “I have to thank the organization – Charles Wang and Garth Snow, as well as the whole coaching staff – for believing in me and committing to me for another five years. It’s a really special, incredible feeling.”

NYIFC Comments: 
Another signing by Charles Wang only to gain real estate, and another player who does not really want to be here signed up well past his UFA date.

That growing list includes Tavares, Okposo, Grabner, Martin, Nielsen x2 , Clutterbuck, Hamonic, Strait, and now Bailey, who has to produce as top six offensive player for this signing to help the organization.

It would not be the worst plan to see what can be done with Andrew MacDonald now, however it is painfully obvious with the defensive prospect depth signed here, and who has to be signed by next summer, the number of spots is getting very limited at the NHL/AHL level.

Joe Finley has a contract for 2013-14. 

Thomas Hickey remains the final NHL level contract (not counting Gallant) who is not signed for the 2013-14 season.

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