Top 25 Islanders Under 25: Oklahoman Matt Donovan at #13

Don't tell Glenn Healy: They play hockey in Oklahoma now.

Are Matt Donovan and Ty Wishart two prospect ships passing each other in the night? Four out of the six voters in our Islanders Top 25 Under 25 panel seem to think so.

Donovan entered the pros at the end of last season on an AHL amateur tryout in Bridgeport, beginning his ELC this year. Ty Wishart came over half-way through last season in the Dwayne Roloson trade and split time at Bridgeport and with the Islanders. Averaging out the votes, Wishart took #14 while Donovan is one above him by a hair.

Now 21-year-old Donovan and 23-year-old Wishart begin the season in the same lineup, along with fellow promotion hopefuls Aaron Ness (also 21) and Calvin De Haan (20). That should make for a fun slate, team environment, and frankly open competition as everyone pushes to develop in the AHL while making their case for the NHL.

Donovan spent most of the summer back home in Oklahoma, working on strength and speed. He told Michael Fornabaio at the CT Post that last season's orientation was a big help to make him feel ready for this season. Currently listed by the Isles at 6'0" and 202 lbs., he used his size well for positioning during training camp. New tests await.

Thus far Donovan has paired with veteran Dylan Reese in Bridgeport, but it's early. How that plays out will give us a much better picture when it comes time to collect votes for the next 25 Under 25.

How We Voted

Top 25 Under 25 mikb M11 CIL Dom KQ Web/Mark
Matt Donovan
11 14 13 12 16 21

For this first edition, we polled LHH authors Keith, WebBard (Mark D), mikb, myself, and two particularly prospect-focused LHH regulars, CanadianIslesLifer and MatthewM11. We wanted enough to get a decent number of voters but not so much that we make the first run unwieldy. It is absolutely unscientific but with varied enough votes to get us thinking.

Previous Posts in This Top 25 Islanders Under 25 Series

The Top 25 under 25 is an idea conceived (I think) by Oilers blog Copper & Blue and copied elsewhere, incorporated here by popular demand. We cut it off at players who were under 25 going into this season, so Andrew MacDonald, having just turned 25 this month, barely misses eligibility.

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