A few thoughts on blogging & the Isles

New York Islander Fan Central | 12/16/2007 08:44:00 AM |
About NYI Fan Central:
I hope folks do not get the impression my blog is only about posting articles from other publications. I do put up the daily articles but instead of just doing that I also post comments about what's written about and do separate game, team and NHL updates.

In other words, more is more at a site called New York Islander Fan Central. I include the articles/my comments while maybe others just do comments for their sites.

Perhaps doing things this way gives an impression I only do the articles?

Most of my comments in the articles you can make a separate blog out of, but I like to give all sides of a story beyond my commentary on a subject.

I wanted to answer a question I got in an e-mail yesterday asking if it's tough to do negative reviews or it's been discouraged by the team because I'm a blogger listed in the box?

The folks at the Islanders (Chris Botta/Cory Witt)have not written one word to me about the content of my blog and outside of singling out this blog on their website at least twice for the time I put into it, I have received one e-mail from Mr Botta telling me how much he loved the energy and time I put into doing this and thanked me. Mr Witt sends a bulk e-mail for every game asking if we plan on attending to respond.

That's been my full contact with the Islanders to this point.

In short, they have been fantastic and it's an honor to have my blog linked on their website regardless of the club's record or whether I am critical or not. First class people who clearly respect our viewpoint whether we are right or wrong in the end.

As everyone knows I was not interested in interviewing players and want my blog seat reserved for an aspiring journalist because our team needs more fans in the primary media. I'm doing here what I do best as I have always did at Islanders-Sound Tigers and HF.

Only here there is no moderation so I can concentrate on hockey. How the club plays is how I write about it based on my perspective. I think I'm fair and what happens on the ice will tell whether the updates are positive or negative.

Regarding the Islanders on the ice:
I'm going to be honest, this is one of the worst Islander teams I have seen in a long time. They are tough to watch or get excited about and I have never seen an Islander team struggle to score like this and here come the forty shot games. I have
no doubt the players like one another but on the ice is another story.

Even the 2005-06 club that was awful was able to raise their game on a few select nights better than this team had done since the opening weekend. I hope things change for the better but I'm very skeptical at this point that they will because this team is setting all time lows in terms of offense for the franchise. I expect things to get worse as teams go all out to score early and force a club that cannot finish to gamble. Skilled teams like Carolina, Ottawa, the scoring teams like Toronto and a West Coast swing I expect will break this team's season and send them out of realistic contention.

I think it's going to get very ugly and I hope I'm wrong. Who's going to resign for this when they can get a fresh start?

I'm going to try to avoid being a broken record in the game updates, but the games played on the ice have been a broken record, it's tough to avoid.

On Chris Simon:
Let the flood of negative Chris Simon articles begin when he is suspended again because this time he cannot be defended. Mike Sillinger wants to say Ruutu maybe was faking his injury that's fine and could be true but that does not excuse attempting to put a skate blade down on some one's ankle, leg or foot.

What's next?
I have no idea where Garth Snow and Ted Nolan look from here for help or they just stubbornly stick to their plan and hope for the best which at this point seems unlikely to change. Actions speak louder than words and at this time no major changes have been made. In the end I have no problem playing for the long term if it turns out the team has to take the hit now for it to happen but to do that Bergenheim should be on the ice in the third period, Tambellini, Nielsen, Comeau, and Colliton also need to be here. Steve Regier has earned his look given his production.

Wayne Gretzky was singled out for playing the kids with the comment that ninety percent of the coaches go to the veterans. Ted Nolan is one of that ninety percent and when crunch time comes it's time to win or lose with his veterans most nights.

Number's game on defense:
I'm kind of hoping they resolve the numbers game on defense and send Berard or Bergeron packing and if someone gets hurt Meyer, Fata or whoever gets a call. It's something that's been hanging over both players all season as the Islanders wait for an injury on defense that surprisingly had not happened or a mistake to put one of them on the bench. Freddy Meyer has played full season in the NHL and looked descent enough when healthy a year ago.

What's missing?
I hoped Garth Snow and Ted Nolan were correct in their judgment but I have always written that Jason Blake would never be as good on any other team then he would be here. Islanders miss Blake just as bad he misses them.

Blake's energy to carry the puck and the play for better or worse is something the Islanders miss every game. It was far from perfect when he was here but it worked and produced a lot of wins. He cannot play that way in Toronto but here it was necessary and that's a big difference. Talk of character, coming to work every game and liking one another is fine but Alexei Yashin's shot is also missing from a lineup of players that do not have any world class shots beyond Bergeron's from the point.

It almost seems Ted Nolan is trying to make Richard Park this teams Jason Blake but he does not have Blake's wrist shot or extra speed.

No, I'm not suggesting the Islanders take back Jason Blake at that price or with his illness, what's done is done. You hope for the best for both sides and move on.

In terms of the AHL and the prospects:
I know Jeff Tambellini got a shorter look this time but I have never seen that speed from him where he stands out nor does he have a great shot. I have some serious doubts now that he's part of the answer here. Part of that could be the problems to score all over the roster, but part of it goes on Tambellini who has had a lot of call ups since he was brought here. He is easy to take off the puck and his defense does not seem to be at an NHL level. I keep seeing a player who fair or not cannot make an impact.

Along those lines I'm tired of reading Dustin Kohn is a healthy scratch at Bridgeport. He has a third period goal and assist a week ago, if your club is near the bottom of the league why bothering playing journeyman veterans unless Jack Capuano has no choice or has to win for his job status with all due respect to the veterans brought in.

By the way if Dan Marshall got fired for last year's Sound Tigers product tell me how Jack Capuano survives this year if his club finishes in the league basement, given his Islander background was being part of a coaching staff in 2005-06 that did not win?

Anyone think Charles Wang regrets letting go of Dave Baseggio because that happened when the club was in transition without a gm or coach two years ago?

What's next at NYI Fan Central:
1. A rare off day Monday unless something major breaks and I suspect it will. News feeders work fine now so you will miss nothing if you view this blog.

2. Full coverage of the WJC.
3. More of the same.

I think it's fair to say what you read here now is what you will find when you visit this blog. It's a very versatile product that will cover practically any Islander related item that expands into NHL subjects when time allows or I feel the need to write about something.

Thanks again for the great support and feel free to ask questions or use the message board or respond to the blogs. Plenty of e-mails but don't' be shy about talking hockey on the page.

I'm trying to get the header problems fixed so temporarily I'm leaving the header which is not sized properly visible so the folks at goggle can help see the problem and provide a template fix, please excuse the appearance.