Tag:New York Islanders
Posted on: October 14, 2011 2:37 pm
Edited on: October 14, 2011 4:05 pm

Daily Skate: Mark Messier to run in NYC Marathon

By Brian Stubits

RUN, MARK, RUN!: Rangers (and Oilers, of course) icon Mark Messier announced on Thursday that he will be running in the next New York City marathon on Nov. 6. He's doing it to benefit two charities, the New York Police & Fire Widows' and Children's Benefit Fund as well as the Tomorrows Children's Fund. Messier says he has no goals -- that's a first! -- and would just like to finish. (NHL.com)

WE DON'T NEED NO STINKIN' DIVISIONS: This might be the most interesting realignment prosposal I have seen to date. This idea calls for the banishment of divisions from hockey, that way you don't have teams being forced to play so ofen in other time zones, a la Dallas, Detroit and Nashville. (Hockey News)

MINI PAVEL: The Red Wings had a classic giveaway for Thursday night's game against the Canucks, handing out Pavel Datsyuk bobbleheads. "Awesome," Datsyuk said about his appearance. "Lots of tan. Looks like me in summertime." Nice keepsake for Red Wings fans. (Detroit Free Press)

HOMETOWN HERO: While Jaromir Jagr didn't return to his original team in Kladno, Czech Republic to play this summer, he is making a very big impression on his old club. To help save the struggling team, Jagr purchased a 70 percent ownership stake in the team, leaving the locals a happy group. (J.J.'s Knights)

TORONTO TROUBLE: Cody Franson was openly sharing his frustration last week that he is the seventh defenseman for the Maple Leafs after they acquired him from Nashville in the offseason. Coach Ron Wilson's response? “He plays the next game and the rest is up to him,” Wilson said of Franson’s status with the team. “He put a lot of pressure on himself talking this week. Now he’s got to perform.” (Globe and Mail)

TOUGH SPOT: The St. Louis Cardinals are currently doing battle with the Milwaukee Brewers in the NLCS, leaving Blues tough guy Barret Jackman in a tough spot. He played a little with Brewers outfielder Nyjer Morgan when Morgan was still giving hockey a shot. "He was one of those guys you loved to hate because he had so much energy," (St. Louis Post-Dispatch)

OVER THE HILL: Chicago Blackhawks veteran Sean O'Donnell just turned 40 on Thursday and for a short while was on the roster the same time as 18-year-old Brandon Saad. Here's a look at the differences in generations from each of their favorite TV shows to hockey heroes. (ESPN Chicago)

NEW TRADITION: The Islanders are putting a new twist on an old hockey tradition. The idea launched by captain Mark Streit, the Isles are now lining up to create a human tunnel for the announcement of the Three Stars of the game. Here's the rendition after Thursday's rout of the Lightning, including a John Tavares imposter.

Photo: Detroit Red Wings Twitpic

For more hockey news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnHockey and @BrianStubitsNHL on Twitter.

Posted on: October 14, 2011 12:37 pm
Edited on: November 18, 2011 2:50 pm

Isles' DiPietro out indefinitely with concussion

By Brian Stubits

At what point do you begin to feel sorry for Rick DiPietro? I mean, if there were ever a goalie that fit the old saying "if it weren't for bad luck, I'd have no luck at all" it's him.

The injury-riddled goaltender for the Islanders is out again. He did not dress in the Islanders' romping of the Tampa Bay Lightning 7-1 on Thursday night after taking a puck to the head in practice the day before. On Friday the team announced he's going to be out for longer as he suffered a concussion on the play. There is no timetable for his return.

As we have learned, there's no idea to know how long it will be until DiPietro might play again. Concussions are finnicky that way.

"You feel for him. The last couple of years it's been a lot for him," Rangers goaltender Henrik Lundqvist said when asked about his fellow New York-area netminder. "When you are hurt that much it's also really tough on you mentally to all the time having to start over and rehab"

Yesterday we detailed some of the struggles that DiPietro has undergone. In the past three seasons, he has played in only 39 games. For the non-math whizzes out there, that's only 13 games per season. When you consider he has a contract for $4.5 million a year (that runs through 2021), that's nearly $350,000 per game played in that time.

Good thing the Islanders were carrying three goalies on their roster, huh? Al Montoya was a somewhat surprising opening-night starter, but he has been terrific in the Islanders' three games, giving up a total of four goals. There's a completely capable backup behind him in veteran Evgeni Nabokov.

I don't know about you, but I feel for the guy and am almost at the point of rooting for DiPietro. The expectations on him were placed mighty high when New York drafted him No. 1 overall, made room for him by sending out Roberto Luongo and then gave him a monstrous contract.

His injury woes are almost beyond jokes at this point. The way I see it, I'd like to see DiPietro remain healthy long enough to play extended time. If he falls flat on his face then, that's on him. But I'd just like to see him get the chance one way or the other.

Photo: Getty Images

For more hockey news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnHockey and @BrianStubitsNHL on Twitter.

Posted on: October 13, 2011 8:52 pm

Video: Victor Hedman's own goal

By: Adam Gretz

Tampa Bay Lightning defenseman Victor Hedman had a first period to forget against the New York Islanders on Thursday night, as he was on the ice for three New York Islanders goals in his first seven minutes of ice-time. And the first one, a tally by John Tavares, the player chosen two spots ahead of him during the 2009 draft, came as a result of Hedman accidentally smacking a bouncing puck with his hand past goaltender Dwayne Roloson.

Here's the video:

Anytime we see a player putting the puck in his own net it's easy to think back to Marc Bergevin, then a member of the St. Louis Blues, accidentally throwing a loose puck into his own net during a playoff game. This one didn't come in as big of a game, but it's still a play Hedman would no doubt love to have back.

For more hockey news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnHockey and @agretz on Twitter.

Posted on: October 13, 2011 2:13 pm

Surprise! DiPietro hurt, won't suit for Islanders

By Brian Stubits

So here's one you've never heard before: New York Islanders goaltender Rick DiPietro is hurt and won't suit up for Thursday night's game against the Lightning. We can hear the gasp of shock from across the NHL, particularly Long Island. DiPietro, hurt? Who'd a thunk?

What has sidelined him this time was a puck he took to the facemask during practice.

"He took one high and hard there and it shook him up a little bit," Islanders coach Jack Capuano said. "He looked all right."

Now we don't want to downplay the severity of this too much because at this point, doctors have yet to rule out a concussion, according to Katie Strang of ESPN New York. It's just at the point that DiPietro being injured is what you expect to see.

Al Montoya had seemingly already taken the job as the No. 1 goalie for the Islanders, but DiPietro was backing him up. In his first two games on the season, Montoya has a 1.53 goals against average and a .940 save percentage. He will get the start again Thursday dagainst the Tampa bay Lightning.

One good thing for New York is that they were actually carrying three goalies on the roster, so former Sharks goaltender Evgeni Nabokov is around to handle the understudy role.

To say DiPietro, the former No. 1 overall draft selection by the Isles, has been injury prone would be like saying water is wet. He has played a combined 39 games in the last three seasons, an average of 13 games per year. When he has actually played, he has hardly been stellar, too. Last season he played in 26 games and a save percentage of .886. For his career it's at .903.

For a player making $4.5 million per season until the year 2021, it's not exactly what you want -- both production wise and injury wise. Especially when you consider New York shipped out Roberto Luongo a decade ago to make room for DiPietro, and it's all just a little maddening for the Isles and their fans.

It's precisely why DiPietro headed one this list from the Hockey News: the 10 most untradeable contracts. Ouch.

Photo: Getty Images

For more hockey news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnHockey and @BrianStubitsNHL on Twitter.

Posted on: October 13, 2011 1:28 pm

Daily Skate: Sabres being careful with Hecht

By Brian Stubits

HECHT OUT: The Buffalo Sabres will be without Jochen Hecht, who suffered a concussion until at least next week as the team is being especially careful with him considering he has a history of concussions. He will be out at least through Saturday's game at Pittsburgh. (Sabres Edge)

GO FISH: Speak of concussions, Capitals GM George McPhee and member of the NHL and NHLPA concussion working group, talked about them recently. Noting that of course you have to be concerned about the players, a non-physical game just isn't as entertaining. “If you go to Europe … it’s not very entertaining. It’s highly skilled, but it’s like trying to watch two guys fish.” (Washington Times)

ROLOSON THANKS SNOW: Dwayne Roloson returns to Long Island to face the Islanders for the first time since he was traded to the Tampa Bay Lightning last season. And the 42-year-old took the time to say thanks to GM Garth Snow. "When I signed, Garth told me the situation and to his credit he stuck to his word, that when we were out of the playoffs, he would trade me. Very appreciative of what he did" (ESPN New York)

SERGE OF MOTIVATION: The boo birds have found a target of Sergei Gonchar in Ottawa. Unhappy with his performance, the Senators fans have let him know. His coach Paul MacLean suggests he uses it to his advantage. “I’ve been booed, so it’s something that you ... I think it’s a motivator. If your fans are unhappy with how you play, they should express that they’re unhappy with how you play. Conversely, if you play better, they should appreciate that you play better and to me, it’s just a signal that you need to be better.” (Senators Exra

THE UNTOUCHABLES: Here is a list compiled of the 10 most untradeable contracts in the NHL. Not surprisingly it starts with Rick DiPietro. But after seeing Brian Campbell change addresses this summer makes me think in this this era of a salary cap floor, no contract is untradeable. (The Hockey News)

FISHER STORY: Mike Fisher of the Nashville Predators is very open about his strong religious faith. He has said in the past one thing he likes about being in Nashville as opposed to Ottawa is the amount of churches. Last summer he came out with a book Defender of Faith about his story. Here's a little more from Fisher on how it came about. (Predators Insider)

BROTHER BOND: When the Toronto Maple Leafs headed to a military camp for a team-bonding retreat, it made defenseman John-Micheal Liles think of his brother stationed in Washington state with the U.S. Navy. Here's a good story on the strong relationship the brothers have. (Globe and Mail)

STROME SENT DOWN: It's about the time of the season where a lot of the rookies who were getting extended looks out of camp are going to be returned to their junior teams beore contracts kick in. That's what the Islanders did with their first pick in this summer's draft, Ryan Strome. (Islanders team site)

MURPHY TOO: The Carolina Hurricanes did the same with their top pick, sending diminutive Ryan Murphy back to Kitchener of the OHL. In Murphy's case, he had been a healthy scratch in the team's four regular-season games, so it seemed pointless to continue to leave him up. (Hurricanes team site)

GABRIEL'S GOAL: One first-round pick who won't be returning to his junior squad is Colorado Avalanche rookie Gabriel Landeskog. The No. 2 pick in the draft scored his first NHL goal (video below) on Wednesday night in a win over the Columbus Blue Jackets, and he talked to Adrian Dater about it afterward. (All Things Avs)

For more hockey news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnHockey and @BrianStubitsNHL on Twitter.

Posted on: October 12, 2011 1:28 pm
Edited on: October 12, 2011 1:51 pm

Daily Skate: Canucks won't forget Methot's hit

By Brian Stubits

METHOT MARKED: The Canucks played in Columbus on Monday night and during the game Henrik Sedin took a hard check into the boards from the Blue Jackets' Marc Methot. While he didn't get any supplementary discipline from the NHL for the hit, there could be more waiting from Vancouver down the line. Kevin Bieksa says a few Canucks tried to challenge Methot to a fight to no avail, so he had this to say afterward: "Hank's a tough guy and he'll take that for the team. But we'll remember that." (Vancouver Sun)

PIN THE TAIL ON THE DONKEY: When Daniel Carcillo arrived in Chicago for his introductory press conference, he decided to fit right in and take some shots at Vancouver, including Tanner Glass, saying he'd "keep them in check" this season. Problem is, Glass is with the Jets now. "He should probably figure out what team I’m on before he starts doing stuff like that. The funny thing is, I’ve asked him to fight before, and he said no. It’s kind of surprising that he called me out in the media. I have no pre-existing relationship with him. He’s a donkey; everyone knows he’s a donkey, that’s just his thing." (Illegal Curve)

SALAK BACK: Speaking of the Blackhawks, they recalled Alexander Salak from the AHL on Wednesday. Corey Crawford had missed the previous two days of practice, but on Wednesday he was back and Ray Emery wasn't present. Interesting goings ons in Chicago. (CSN Chicago)

SPOT PRACTICE START: I just love these stories. The Capitals had to sit out Michal Neuvirth in practice on Wednesday for what Bruce Boudreau called a lower body injury (he is available for Thursday's game in Pittsburgh, coach said). Since you kind of need two goalies, they got PR man Sergey Kocharov to fill in. (Capitals Watch)

BACK TO THE TANK: The San Jose Sharks are moving their next few practices to the HP Pavilion, where they play their games. The idea? Coach Todd McLellan wants his team to get used to the new boards and glass so they can keep their home-ice advantage. Good thinking. (Working the Corners)

FASTER THAN A SPEEDING BULLET: That is one way to desribe Phil Kessel's shot. Maple Leafs goalie James Reimer talks about the invisible shot that is so quick of his team's All-Star forward. He sounds glad to be on the other side of the ice. (Toronto Sun)

TO BOO OR NOT TO BOO? That is the question begging Senators fans about Sergei Gonchar. There is no question in this blogger's mind Gonchar deserves it for his indifference in Ottawa to start the season. (Silver Sens)

NYSTROM CLEARS: The Minnesota Wild placed Eric Nystrom on waivers last week then put him on re-entry waivers on Tuesday. Both times he cleared. So even at half price, nobody was willing to take a shot on the 28-year-old who had just four goals and a minus-16 last season. (Russo's Rants)

CHANT ALONG: Finally, as a request by @CoachBlueweiss after yesterday's Daily Skate item about the Maple Leafs' (and others') new goal song, here is some love to the Islanders' for this year, a little diddy called Crowd Chant by Joe Satriani. Not bad.

For more hockey news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnHockey and @BrianStubitsNHL on Twitter.

Posted on: October 8, 2011 12:50 pm
Edited on: October 8, 2011 1:03 pm

Islanders to start Montoya over DiPietro, Nabokov

Am1By: Adam Gretz

The Washington Capitals aren't the only team that have a rather surprising opening night starter in the crease. When the Islanders open their regular season schedule on Saturday night against new-look Florida Panthers, it will be Al Montoya filling the net instead of veterans Rick DiPietro or Evgeni Nabokov.

Coach Jack Capuano said, via Newsday's Arthur Staple, that it's a "gut feeling" to go with the 26-year-old Montoya.

He appeared in 21 games last season for the Islanders and played better than anybody could have expected, posting a .921 save percentage and recording one shutout during the stretch run. He was one of six goaltenders to appear in a game for the Islanders last season, and his performance was probably the most surprising given how disappointing his career had been prior to joining the team.

A first-round pick by the Rangers in 2004, he never played a game for the blue shirts before being traded to Phoenix as part of a five-player trade during the 2008 season. The Islanders acquired him back in February after trading Dwayne Roloson to Tampa Bay and losing a number of other goalies to injury throughout the season. And now he's getting the opening night start, getting the call over the oft-injured DiPietro, who has appeared in just 39 games over the past three seasons, and Nabokov, who the Islanders claimed on waivers last season following his brief stint in the KHL.

Photo: Getty Images

For more hockey news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnHockey and @agretz on Twitter.

Posted on: October 4, 2011 7:08 pm
Edited on: October 4, 2011 7:22 pm

Duchene looking for Tavares money

MD2By: Adam Gretz

Matt Duchene is entering the final year of his entry-level contract with the Colorado Avalanche and the topic of his next contract is, naturally, starting to come up. Especially since the player taken two spots ahead of him in 2009, John Tavares, signed a six-year, $33 million contract with the New York Islanders earlier this summer.

According to Mike Chambers of the Denver Post, Duchene and his agent, Pat Brisson, who also represents Tavares, are looking for a similar deal from the Avalanche. And it's awfully difficult, if not impossible, to argue that he isn't worth it based on his performance over the first two years of his career when compared to the play of Tavares on Long Island.

Here's what Duchene had to say on the subject, as well as the connection to Tavares, via Chambers:
"J.T. and I are pretty close. I didn't talk to J.T. about it, but I talked to our agent, Pat Brisson, about it, and we weren't sure what was going to happen right after he signed, whether it was going to be potentially something for me, but I didn't really care either way," Duchene said. "I love playing the game and the money is obviously nice, but I've never let that be a distraction for me. Not once. I'm not worried about it whatsoever."
The two players have basically been carbon copies of one another over the past two seasons from a production point of view, and they both play the same position, center. See for yourself on the chart below comparing their games played, goals, points, Even Strength points per minute and their faceoff percentages:

Matt Duchene vs. John Tavares: First Two Years
Player Games Goals Points ES Points/Min Faceoff %
John Tavares 161 53 121 .0304 50%
Matt Duchene 161 51 122 .0348 47%

The raw numbers are as close as they can possibly be without being absolutely identical, and while Tavares has a small edge in the face off circle, Duchene scores a bit more in even strength situations while Tavares is more dangerous on the power play. But these are marginal differences.

James O'Brien over at PHT points out that while Duchene's apparent asking price is expensive, it could be worse for the Avalanche as he's not asking for a deal similar to the one his teammate, Paul Stastny, signed that pays him $6.6 million per year. A contract similar to the one Tavares signed would pay him $5.5 million per year.

Of course, it's also difficult to compare Duchene and Stastny at this point. While Stastny signed his current contract early in his third season (the same season Duchene is entering now) he was a significantly more productive player during his first two years in the league. During Stastny's first two seasons, for example, he had recorded 149 points in just 148 games. He was a point-per-game player and a regular on the Avalanche penalty kill, a role that neither Duchene or Tavares have regularly played over their first two years.

Duchene is a building block player for the Avalanche and he's already a very accomplished player for his age. Of course he's going to be expensive, and a deal in the same ballpark as Tavares is not only reasonable given how comparable they are, it should be expected. Anything less is a financial win for the Avalanche.

Photo: Getty Images

For more hockey news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnHockey and @agretz on Twitter.

The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com