An independent blog on the New York Islanders and the NHL by a guy from New York.

Monday, August 14, 2017

New York Islanders Off-Season: Islanders Prince Out 4-6 Months and Gionta Remains an Asset

The Islanders announced today that Shane Prince will be recovering from surgery to correct a high-ankle sprain and is slated to miss 4-6 months. He tried to play through the nagging injury last season, but it never fully healed despite trying several different ways to rehabilitate the injury, his pain and injury only got worse.

In 50 games last season, Prince had a career NHL high with 18 points (5 & 13), but struggled to remain healthy.  Per release, “After notifying our medical staff he was referred to specialists, who after trying more conservative measures determined that it was in Shane's best interest to have surgery.” Surgery has been completed and Prince is looking ahead to a more complete work out to start his season in ’17-18, and although it will be a later start than desired, he is optimistic.

“Did my best to play through it last season and also let it heal this off season but surgery was needed. I will be back healthy asap! #Isles” - Shane Prince on Twitter.

Without Prince in the rotation, the high-end prospect pool and available trade market may get an extra look or two at the start of the regular season.

On August 8th, the New York Islanders re-signed Stephen Gionta to a one-year, two-way, $650K/$225K (Staple) (NHL/AHL) contract.

The 33-year-old Gionta filled in for 26 games last season with the Isles and showed everyone around him just how hard he works to play his game. He tallied 6 points (1 & 5) and made his presence felt whenever called upon, winning over support from the coaches and fanbase. Gionta worked just as hard with Bridgeport (3 points in 7 games) and earned another contract with New York. Gionta will be a strong back up player for the Isles and can be called upon to fill a variety of roles. He is certainly a great asset to have with the Sound Tigers of the AHL.

Per release, “Gionta has seven points (three goals, four assists) in 24 Stanley Cup Playoff games, all during the Devils 2011-12 run to the Stanley Cup Final … Internationally, Gionta won a Bronze medal with Team USA at the 2013 World Championships (Sweden & Finland), scoring three goals in 10 games. Gionta scored two goals in six games while representing Team USA at the 2001 U18 World Junior Championships (Helsinki).”

Isles Notes:

Joe Dowd: Bet the ranch, Isles skating to Belmont.


Sound Tigers Notes:

The #SoundTigers have released their most extensive promotional calendar in team history for '17-18! Spoiler: I intend to be at the Star Wars Tribute Night on 12/2 again, this time with the 501st Connecticut Garrison. Be sure to stop by and say hello to the 181st Tie Pilot ;).

#TI13222 #NoQuarterGiven #BST #BridgeportDeep

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

New York Islanders Off-Season: Islanders Extend Calvin de Haan, Avoid Arbitration

On 7/31, Elliotte Friedman wrote, “DeHaan (NYI): team offer -- $1.95M...Player ask: $5M. Still time to settle.” We all know de Haan is worth more than $1.95M, especially on the open market for Defensemen, but a business is a business. de Haan was set for an arbitration hearing today. Not anymore.

The Islanders announced Calvin de Haan agreed to terms on a one-year, $3.3M deal (Staple). In his 4th NHL season, de Haan put up highs in points (25), goals (5) and assists (20) while playing in a healthy and productive, 2016-17 campaign for New York.

"Calvin is a home-grown product of the organization and has developed into one of our top defenseman during his time with the organization," Islanders President and General Manager Garth Snow said. "He plays important minutes for our club and we're excited to have him back for one more year." 

de Haan was the Isles 12th selection, 1st round in the Tavares 2009 draft year. Since then, he has tallied 271 NHL games (11 & 58 for 69 points) along with 3 assists in 16 playoff appearances from the Isles blue line.

de Haan has been guilty for mistakes in inopportune moments over his his first few seasons while becoming an NHL regular on defense, but to me, he has gotten better each and every year. Beyond the stat sheet, de Haan has become a more comfortable and smarter blue liner, and that showed big-time last year with 2nd highest points and assists totals on the team and a high ranking NHL stat (4th in blocked shots - 190) recognition. He's now eligible to go into the 2017-18 off-season as a UFA if not locked up prior to July 1st.

Per B.D. Gallof, “de Haan's 1 year deal at 3.3 keeps +3.65 million in cap room for this year, and a whopping $35.5 next yr as players go off contracts #isles

de Haan was awarded a Silver Medal with Team Canada at the 2017 World Championships to go along with his 2010 and 2011 WJC Silver Medals.

On 7/27, the Islanders announced a One-Year, Two-Way Deal for F, Connor Jones.

Jones got noticed in the system with Bridgeport after his 4 season, 129 point run (49 & 80) at Quinnipiac University. With the AHL Sound Tigers, Jones had 5 and 14 for 19 points in 58 games and had a reputation for a hard-nosed, relentless work ethic. 

Jones finished the season and filled in well with the Islanders, helping them with a late play off push that ultimately fell short. He was a part of the Isles strong 5-0 finish to the regular season in April.

Isles Notes:

Adam Pelech, "I'm really excited to be part of this team moving forward."

Per Jim Baumbach, “Don't expect comments by Isles, Oak View or Wilpons' Sterling Project Development re Belmont for while. They're studying RFP & strategizing.”