Before seeing Blink-182 in concert last night, Newsday Islanders reporter Arthur Staple took some questions from fans via Twitter about many topics, including Mathew Barzal, Ryan Strome, Mikhail Grabovski and the differences between being a columnist and a beatwriter.
Training camp is going to mean an extended look at 2015 first rounder Mathew Barzal, who seems like the most likely prospect to make next the team. “Seems” and “will” are two different things, though. He’s going to need a very, very strong showing to tip that 50% chance more in his favor.
@Koobs11 Still think Grabo isn't cleared to do anything. Thanks!— Arthur Staple (@StapeNewsday) August 23, 2016
@aaronfeigin Haven't heard anything different from last month -- still think his career might be over.— Arthur Staple (@StapeNewsday) August 23, 2016
Staple would be the first to say he’s a reporter, not a doctor so let’s take this information about Mikhail Grabovski with the requisite grains of salt. The Islanders will probably want to see what kind of shape Grabovski in when training camp starts before they start to take the next steps. No doubt they, like us, want a healthy Grabovski back in the line-up next season. Right now, it sounds like there’s no guarantee that’ll happen.
All The Strome Things
So far, still no Ryan Strome, who needs a new contract extension. Signing RFAs right before camp is nothing new for the Islanders, so we wait. Getting Strome back to (at least) his rookie year scoring pace is going to be vital to their success this season, so something will get done eventually. Right?
@mtrico Not really. Believe Barclays hired an in-house ice engineer, but beyond that there isn't much else big that can be done.— Arthur Staple (@StapeNewsday) August 23, 2016
@joe_canzo if they announced a new building tomorrow you'd still be going to Barclays for the next 5 years minimum. Don't stress it— Arthur Staple (@StapeNewsday) August 23, 2016
The hiring of an in-house ice person is a new, and as of now, a not-yet-public idea for Barclays Center. During the playoffs, NHL ice man Dan Craig had patrolled the sheet at Brooklyn, but he’s since been deployed to Edmonton to get the Oilers’ new building up and running. This issue is also going to come into more focus as training camp nears, I assume.
As for any move news, it’s all part of the Islanders experience. Until there’s a press conference announcing a new building, it’s business as usual.
The Rock Show
@ItsCoKane plenty of Isles folks around here who are fans. Don't need me to wave the pom poms.— Arthur Staple (@StapeNewsday) August 23, 2016
@ItsCoKane have some faith in your team! What I say means nothing as far as how they perform. You know this.— Arthur Staple (@StapeNewsday) August 23, 2016
@ItsCoKane I do, and it's funny -- lots of fans think I'm not tough enough on them. Depends on your perspective I guess.— Arthur Staple (@StapeNewsday) August 23, 2016
@ItsCoKane but my job isn't to have opinions. I report on what they say and do and you get to rage or cheer. works better this way, trust me— Arthur Staple (@StapeNewsday) August 23, 2016
A little inside baseball, but an interesting look at Staple’s process nonetheless. Being a team’s sole beatwriter is a real balancing act with both the organization and readers.
@PJA9 Don't know if it was discussed as a straight swap. EDM wanted Hamonic, GS said he wasn't available for a forward.— Arthur Staple (@StapeNewsday) August 23, 2016
@J_ferns97 It'd happen after camp opens, so someone who's unhappy with their G situation or dealing with injury... Hard to say.— Arthur Staple (@StapeNewsday) August 23, 2016
@HutBeezerHC I think they might deal a forward before the expansion draft.— Arthur Staple (@StapeNewsday) August 23, 2016
A random selection of topics. The goalie situation continues to confuse, and will through the World Cup where Thomas Greiss and Jaroslav Halak will be teammates on Team Europe. Every fanbase in the league is afraid of who their team is going to lose to Las Vegas next season.
I don’t know why I included the Taylor Hall/Travis Hamonic Tweet other than if I don’t, someone else will.
As for being the Islanders’ resident fighter, Staple’s offer is brave but there’s a Boulton for that.