After last seasons draft one would think the way they touted Dehaan he would at least get an invite to camp just to get a sniff of the NHL. What about Hamonic and Ness who already look to be headed to the WJC this season? I'm not expecting these guys to make the roster but if there are the Dmen you wish to mold for the future I don't understand the reluctance to bring them to camp.
Here is the D-corp coming to camp courtesy of Dee Karl;
# Name Height Weight Date Of Birth Age Birthplace
4 Mark Flood6' 1" 190 Sep 29, 1984 24 Charlottetown, PE, CAN
8 Bruno Gervais 6' 1" 205 Oct 3, 1984 24 Longueuil, QC, CAN
38 Jack Hillen 5' 11" 200 Jan 24, 1986 23 Minnetonka, MN, USA
71 Mark Katic 5' 10" 180 May 9, 1989 20 Timmins, ON, CAN
56 Dustin Kohn 6' 2" 200 Feb 2, 1987 22 Edmonton, AB, CAN
47 Andrew MacDonald6' 1" 188 Sep 7, 1986 23 Judique, NS, CAN
24 Radek Martinek6' 1" 203 Aug 31, 1976 33 Havlicko Brod, CZE
44 Freddy Meyer5' 10" 192 Jan 4, 1981 28 Sanbornville, NH, USA
2 Mark Streit 6' 0" 197 Dec 11, 1977 31 Bern, CHE
25 Andy Sutton 6' 6" 245 Mar 10, 1975 34 Kingston, ON, CAN
42 Brett Westgarth 6' 2" 225 Feb 4, 1982 27 Amherst, ON, CAN
32 Brendan Witt "A" 6' 2" 223 Feb 20, 1975 34 Humboldt, SK, CAN
Not very encouraging for a team that's supposed to be "rebuilding" is it? Outside of Hillen we don't have one Defensemen that can be considered here for five years down the line. Bruno Gervais, as nice of a kid as he is, is not a guy I see on this roster as it moves into contention five years from now.
And this is now "begging the question" as to whether this rebuild is as sincere as management claims it to be. This is not something that is set in stone in my mind but one that I have been kicking around for the last few months; Is this rebuild really a result of this team "learning it's lesson" or a matter of "We're losing money and the idea of a rebuild is just good PR to sell to the fans"? Enquiring minds want to know. Especially after looking at the D-Corp coming to camp.
We've seen before where management has cut down salaries on the roster because of the arena issue. No need to rehash that as we can all probably recite the chronology of that era in our sleep. I have to wonder how serious this is before Wang decides to visit the well once again and demand these kids are traded for more lackluster pieces ala Yashin and Peca.
How do you expect kids to "buy in" here if your not inviting them to camp. I don't know how to justify to Hamonic and Ness, who are both coming off of successful campaigns last year, that they are being passed over for guys like Mark Flood and Brett Westgarth. For a team that is rebuilding they are a little long in the tooth on the blue line even considering the D invited to camp.
This also leads me to an interesting quote from a Botta piece a few weeks ago.
It’s worth noting the Islanders attempted to sign at least one college free agent this summer. I spoke with one yesterday who said he met face-to-face with Garth Snow, appreciated the interest and liked what the GM had to say. In the end, he signed elsewhere because he felt his new team’s system was better for him. “I know some of the Islanders’ prospects,” he said. “They are very good. The Islanders are going to be fine.” More on this player tomorrow
I'm surprised no one has made hay of this in Newsday or the Isles blogosphere that contains a lot of very talented people. I don't know about you, but hearing this from a young unsigned prospect, who is also familiar with a lot of other prospects in our system, is not very encouraging at all. There are two things these kinds of players look for when signing with a team; Money and ICE TIME!!!!
The Isles, given their situation, should have no problems being attractive to younger signees on the fringe of the NHL (For those thinking Gilroy don't worry about it. I saw him play enough at BU to know that a lot of the stuff he did there to be successful is not going to translate to the NHL. That was a smart pass by Snow.). What is of concern is the speculation now fueled that this team has a bad rep amongst UFAs that refuse to sing here and that has now extended to younger players that SHOULD BE SIGNING HERE!!!! EN MASSE!!!!!