New York Notables/Sticks & Pucks

New York Islander Fan Central | 10/30/2015 07:18:00 PM |
The 2015-16 New York Islanders have played ten games, and frankly could have lost nine of them in regulation with Winnipeg their only effort that looked like 2014-15.

6-2-2 looks like an illusion.

So far, it's not the dominating puck possession/fast skating/hardest working team they were to play against last season on terrible Coliseum ice. This is the opposite, and it does not seem like a developing strategy where they are trying to play Ranger like 2-1 low maintenance chess games with a five man goalie unit once they get any lead holding teams to under 25 shots with few quality chances.

And the Islanders had five players back against Carolina on the tying goal. Bailey not having the passing lane to a cutting forward.

Opposing teams now bring the game at NYI, outshooting/sometimes outhitting them and they seem much slower/easier to shut down for long stretches of games.

I would love to wave the pom poms, and sure things can (perhaps should) improve, but even in beating Calgary it was a 1-0 game into the third period against a reeling team who played a goaltender that had weak goals go through him. (like Coliseum win against Dallas)

The goaltenders (Greiss) have been the Islanders best players, but again Halak showing his lack of durability or someone who can shoulder the same work load Nabokov did in 2013 is a fair reason why other teams decided to let him go for another #1 goaltender despite some dominating play at times.

Lee, Strome, Nelson have hardly improved, and regressed offensively. Grabovski looks like a career center finally playing his natural position. Seems everyone but UFA Okposo plays right wing next to Tavares.

Hamonic-deHaan look very beatable too often. Strait-Zidlicky are very mistake prone. Leddy's shots are being deflected in but he has not been visible enough and Boychuk does not look like a top pairing defender capable of producing consistent offense making seven million this season.

It's not the loss of rarely healthy Visnovsky or Donovan who was glued to the stands on defense. Strait played 52 games last season, and all seven playoff games a year ago on a team with 101 points.

The core forwards are unchanged besides being a year older. Given the home record for years it's not the commute because this has been a better road team for years, and other teams have players commuting/staying in hotels at home on game days with their practice facility as far away as Barclay's is from Iceworks.

Our players are accustomed to playing in front of empty seats at home.

My impression about the special teams are despite numbers, it's also an illusion after ten games or other teams issues.

Ok, that's what I can write about ten games, sorry if it's not positive despite 6-2-2.

It can turn around but there is no hiding from 0-4 Devils, now 5-4-1 playing low shot against games, who can score, skate, playing an up-tempo game this team has not shown since last season.

A lot of hard working, good, fast teams will be playing the NYI soon.

There has to be a big improvement, and it has nothing to do with where they play, game-day routines or how many empty seats at Barclay's vs empty an Coliseum seats since 1989.

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For what it's worth Richard Brodsky of Newsday told me on twitter 10/29 Nassau would consider asbestos air testing, and other things as Ratner doing construction on the Nassau Coliseum which would mean he's honoring his lease.

He had no answers for an anchor AHL team tenant being announced as NEC Ratner promised before a ground breaking/construction.

If all this happens and Prokhorov does purchase rights to most of NEC Ratner Coliseum stakes and the agreement with Nassau County, it makes one wonder why Bruce Ratner wanted to bid on the Coliseum renovation in the first place even back to the planning stage before bids were taken?

Ratner was a majority owner of the Nets for close to a decade before he sold eighty percent to Prokhorov, he currently owns a majority stake in Barclay's so it's not like he was in these projects short-term, he did countless interviews on video in front of audiences that were posted here.

Does this have anything to do with the Islanders playing home games in NYC or it's three owners? No.

Does this have anything to do with the Islanders lease in NYC until 2040/revenue or television contract to play in NYC until 2031? No.

Is it going to change the Nets guaranteed television money and new contract with YES Network which could pay them 40 million a year to continue playing at Barclay's? No. 

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