(For the record, we understand there are differing views on how much weight to give such reports. We also know regulars are going to discuss them here regardless, so we might as well post a separate thread for them and offer our own sober take.)
What was interesting to me was how this news immediately amplifies the paranoia Islanders fans already feel: The report gets echoed across the hockey landscape, and the conventional wisdom takeaway is another personnel problem for the Isles (most often, Evgeni Nabokov and Lubomir Visnovsky were brought up in the outlets I saw).
If you didn't see it, Arthur Staple of Newsday followed up with more context -- granted, from Garth Snow's side -- and Darren Dreger also weighed in on NHL Network re-iterating that no, no the Isles have zero interest in dealing the prospect...
...which is not surprising in the least but also gives one cause to wonder what, exactly, the agent and his employer hoped to gain by this. The Post also has a follow-up, with Snow essentially saying last year and this year are all steps in Nino's development.
Assuming the leak did not come from within the Isles organization (and they'd have little reason to shame their player in this way), the "Nino's camp" (read: agent) no doubt thought they could escalate pressure on the Isles via ... via their fanbase? ... to promote Nino and get him earning NHL ducats again.
But North American hockey doesn't work that way. Our own Swiss readers also provided interesting context on Niederreiter's agent and how he's handled the lineup yearnings of other Swiss NHLer clients like Luca Sbisa. Maybe there's a sports/cultural divide at work. Regardless, this probably blows over.
Update: Speak of the devil, the agent was interviewed in the Swiss press saying the trade request was his idea and he made it because he doesn't think the Islanders are handling his client properly. (h/t Rokktar in comments.)
And at any rate, can you really begrudge this man? You'll all forgive him and vote for him, I'm sure:
I also shot this, on little sleep, mainly to give a thematic nod to our WWII propaganda fans and our Swiss readers (clothing-wise, Venezia is as close as I could get).
More, and more readable:
- Here is the Islanders official site weekly prospect update.
- Here is Hockey's Future almost trolling us on this day by highlighting the arsenal of talented prospects in the Isles pipeline.
- Here is David Ullstrom on NHL Home Ice after the Tampa Bay game, trying to understand Phil Esposito.
- Winless teams through two or three games: Philadelphia (0-3), and 0-2 teams Carolina, Washington, Short Island Smurfs (already alarmed), Los Angeles, Calgary, Phoenix and Vancouver. Fire the GM or coach or something.
- Behold, another Tambellini.
- They don't only hate us: "Two games in and it's already a circus in Vancouver."
- The Isles play the Leafs this week, so what's going on in Toronto? Five years at $5.25 million for Joffrey [sic] Lupul, that's what.
- Finally, Kirill Kabanov is nearing a return after a skate cut wiped half his season away. He's excited. And the story of his cut makes you woozy. Maybe that's why Nino's getting antsy.