Somewhat less newsworthy but arguably more interesting than the expected re-signing of RFA Ryan Strome, the New York Islanders Tuesday also announced that Claude Loiselle has joined them as Hockey Operations Consultant.
Loiselle is a former Islanders player, though last time he suited up the 23-year playoff series victory drought erased this spring was not even a thought. He was a defensive-minded center and penalty killer for the Isles from 1991-94, where he finished his NHL career.
But more relevant to his new role, Loiselle has been a front office member of the Arizona Coyotes (as hockey ops consultant last season), the Toronto Maple Leafs (as a VP and assistant general manager under the old regime, 2010-14, including a role in cap management), and Tampa Bay Lightning (first hockey ops associate director, later assistant GM, spanning 1998-2009).
So he's well-connected around the league and has been inside a variety of organizations. His work -- and more specifically his quotes -- while with Toronto are best viewed with extreme caution, as he is associated with the objectively poor decision to consummate and defend the David Clarkson contract.
In a statement, GM Garth Snow put that simply: "Claude brings decades of management and player evaluation experience to the Islanders and we’re excited to add him to our team."
He's also a member of the New York State Bar, which qualifies him to blog about sports, among other things. After his playing career, he earned his law degree from McGill University in 1998.
What impact will this have? How will he fit into the organizational structure under new ownership that has indicated it will let its hockey ops people do their hockey ops thing? That is for the Isles to know, and us to attempt to decipher, through lengthy, speculative comment forum debates about what part Loiselle had in those previous organizations and how we can totally see that appearing in the decisions and development of today's and tomorrow's Islanders.