The Islanders recently parted ways with head trainer Garrett Timms and, as of now, no replacement has been named. But one government program, led by one man, is vying for the opportunity to revolutionize the Islanders' physical fitness strategy for next year and for the foreseeable future.
That man is Oscar Goldman, director of the Office of Scientific Intelligence (OSI), the world-wide leader in internal bionic technology and mechanical limb and organ replacement. Goldman's aim is to implant Islanders players with special surgical enhancements that will make them better... stronger... faster than every other NHL team.
Goldman sat down for an exclusive interview with Lighthouse Hockey to discuss OSI's ideas and how they could help the Islanders and their players.
LIGHTHOUSE HOCKEY: First, the obvious question: Why the Islanders?
OSCAR GOLDMAN: The New York Islanders. A team barely alive. Gentlemen, we can rebuild them. We have the technology. We have the capability to make the world's first bionic hockey team. The New York Islanders will be that team. Better than they were before.
LHH: How did the idea of using bionic implants on athletes come about?
OG: We've had two test subjects for quite some time and the results have been nothing short of brilliant. NASA astronaut Steve Austin was the first but our second was tennis pro Jaime Sommers. Although receiving a serve from her on the tennis court could tear an opponent's arm clean off at the shoulder joint, Jaime's athletic background made us reconsider whether or not we could dial back the potentially deadly aspects of the implants and make them safe for players in a team sports environment.
LHH: What are Austin and Sommers doing now?
LHH: So, do you have specific ideas as to what implants to install on certain Islanders players?
OG: I'm glad you asked, pal...
MICHAEL GRABNER - #40 - RW
BIONIC ENHANCEMENT: LASER-GUIDED SHOOTER'S HANDS
Grabner already possesses superhuman foot speed, possibly as a result of Austrian-Italian eugenics experiments conducted during World War II. Grabner seems to get breakaways on every shift, but his problems this season have stemmed from flubbing those precious, glorious scoring opportunities with poorly chosen or executed shots.
To rectify this, we'll replace the bones in his hands with flexible metal rods covered in tiny clusters of laser sights that will anticipate and pinpoint the exact spot on the net that the goalie cannot cover. Once a target spot is acquired, the hands will snap to a shooting motion resulting in breakaway goals by the boatload. Estimated time from calculation to shot: 0.000002 seconds.
KYLE OKPOSO - #21 - RW
BIONIC ENHANCEMENT: PRESSURE GENERATING LEGS
Okposo has the body of a bull, but the game of a hawk. He sticks to the perimeter, preferring to shoot from outside rather than crashing the net. His work in the corners is good, but he could use a little more power in his play. With his new micro-hydraulic implants, Okposo can adjust the pressure through and around his legs, giving him more strength throughout.
He'll gain the skating momentum of an 18-wheeler rolling downhill with no brakes as well as the ability to park his ass in front of the net for weeks on end without fatigue. It'll also make him impossible to knockdown in a fight.
RICK DIPIETRO - #39 - G
BIONIC ENHANCEMENT: NONE
The entirety of DiPietro's internal structure has already been replaced through a series of surgeries over the years. There is nothing OSI can do for him at this point.
JOHN TAVARES - #91 - C
BIONIC ENHANCEMENT: ADORABLE ROBOT BUDDY WITH DIGITAL VIDEO TRANSMITTERS AND SATELLITE LINK-UP
As any Islanders fan already knows, John Tavares is perfect in every way. The only advantage we could possibly give him would be providing him with an adorable, merchandisable robot buddy that will shadow his every move on the ice and would be equipped with digital video transmitters that will wirelessly upload hundreds of camera angles of all of his amazing plays to his own cable channel, JTTV (channel 91 on Cablevision, not available on DishNetwork).
That way, the hockey world can finally the witness majesty of Hockey Moses in somewhat clear Standard Def video, and Islanders fans no longer have to hear, "Yeah, he's good. Too bad nobody sees him because he plays for the Islanders."
LHH: These enhancements sound amazing. But will the NHL allow a team to have bionic parts installed in its players?
OG: We're hoping to get it worked into this summer's CBA negotiations and we're willing to go to a lockout if necessary.
LHH: How much will these improvements cost?
OG: $6 million dollars per player. Each order includes a free red and white track suit and matching Puma sneakers.
LHH: Seriously, is there any chance this actually happens?
OG: Nah. Wang's too cheap.
(Oscar Goldman is not a real person and this is not a real interview. I mean, c'mon...)
(Serious note: The original article incorrectly noted that trainer Scott Boggs had been let go by the Islanders. Boggs was neither let go by the team, nor is he a trainer. Garrettt Timms was the one who was let go. Boggs remains with the team in his actual role as equipment manager. It's satire, but it should still be right.)