The first major (public) decision of the Lou Lamoriello era is...an extension of their ECHL affiliation with the Worcester Railers for two more years through the 2019-20 season.
Some extension was likely in the works before the new president of hockey operations came on board. But now that he’s here, such decisions won’t happen without his blessing.
The Islanders began this affiliation last summer as the Railers began their inaugural season. That was a one-year agreement, and it seemed to work well. The Railers were the only team in the affiliate family (NHL Islanders, AHL Bridgeport Sound Tigers) to make the playoffs this spring.
The past year put several synergies in place, with Islanders assistant general manager Chris Lamoriello (yes relation) also serving as general manager of the Sound Tigers, and thus shepherding the flow of prospects to and fro’.
As the Connecticut Post’s Sound Tigers beatwriter Michael Fornabaio put it in an update on the Soundin’ Off blog: “It was pretty clearly a good deal for the Sound Tigers and seemed to work for Worcester, too.”
This is a relationship that geographically and organizationally makes a lot of sense, so it’s good to see the initial dating period has led to the two organizations going steady. If they can agree on how to load the dishwasher they will be in good shape. The Islanders previously were affiliated with the ECHL Missouri Mavericks, located in Kansas City.
Follow the Railers at RailersHC.com.