Maybe it's a mid-summer reverie, or maybe it's the I'll-take-anything excitement that comes with a little dose of hockey in the middle of summer, but it's cool to see the prospects get some love and attention at mini-camp this week.
Whether it's Ryan Strome looking like he's right there and asking "Is it October yet?" [video link], or the more seasoned pros like Johan Sundstrom and Brock Nelson in battle drills, or just seeing Calvin de Haan and Kirill Kabanov out there skating healthily, this is a time for dreaming about the future.
Oh, and the annual Orange & Blue scrimmage where we say "Nino looks good!" and "Anders Nilsson is HUGE!" is at 7 p.m. tonight at Nassau Coliseum.
Some more links to feed those dreams:
Anders Nilsson talks about identifying and getting over being gluten and lactose intolerant. [IslesTV video] He still has my bet for beating out Poulin in the long run.
Ryan Pulock at the Newsday blog: "It’s your first camp and you want to make a good first impression. Honestly, I want to play here as soon as possible." Naturally, everyone is ducking out of the way of his shot.
Griffin Reinhart at the same (different link), with this and more: "I play in a really deceptive way," the 6-4, 202-pound defenseman said. "I cover the ice really well. I’m not the type of player that needs to skate 100 percent all the time — I kind of read the game. I think that is sometimes misinterpreted as lazy or not urgent and [not] intense..." Not that he's Pronger, but Pronger took a similar approach.
Newsday on what Anders Lee needs to do to impress the Isles as he enters into what is a contract year. I fully expect him to start in Bridgeport, but I hope to enjoy watching him prove otherwise.
The official site has a similar theme on Lee (who talks of learning positioning), Brock Nelson and Strome, who says, “I think about getting to the NHL every day. It’s where I want to be. Everything I do, day or night, relates to being on the Islanders.”
And in more regular business, if you missed it yesterday, Josh Bailey has filed for salary arbitration.
- This was kind of painful but really well put together: The All-Time 'Gave Up Too Soon' NHL Team - The Triangle Blog - Grantland
- The Wild face one of those NHL-or-juniors decisions with Matt Dumba.
- Jagr's agent says yeah maybe Hurricanes, hell no Sabres.
- Wow, did Tuukka Rask's "prove it" year ever pay off: Eight years, $56 million. No chance of regretting that contract, surely. Even as a fan of TWO teams that desperately need goalie help, that deal would scare me to death.
- If you think this site beats you over the head with "advance" stats, I'm sorry. We want this site to be an inviting place for any discussion, of any hockey lens based on reason (or humor). So fancy stats are not the alpha and the omega, but they do provide another very helpful layer of perspective. Here's a user-friendly guide from a Leafs fan lens that outlines, on a team level, which stats most correlate to winning over the past six teams.
- On that note, here's a very not-advanced-stats perspective on why the Leafs are crazy for buying out Grabovski.
- Copper & Blue assesses the Perron-for-Umlauts trade, generally pleased but noting with curiosity why Craig MacTavish thought Perron was a penalty killer. The Blues needed to move a contract and Perron, while productive, has been at the center of some "passenger" issues.