As I'm certain you're all aware, the Islanders have chosen to terminate their "sponsorship" of Chris Botta's Point Blank blog, effectively signaling it's demise. I encourage everyone to write to email@example.com and let your voice be heard. Here is a copy of my letter:
Thursday, July 30, 2009
Thursday, July 23, 2009
Last night, I was with my son as he was taking his first steps (gratuitous proud dad announcement!) when I got a text from a friend telling me of the Biron signing. I of course pushed my boy aside to run to the nearest computer to get all of the details (kidding, kidding). Admittedly, the news caught me off guard at first, but now that I've had a few hours to digest it, I think it tells us a few things:
1. Ricky is not going to be ready to start the season, and likely won't be ready until at least after the Olympic break. Sure this is just conjecture, but I'm sure if they expected Ricky to be ready by even Thanksgiving, they would be comfortable enough letting their new $5M man Roloson carry the load until then.
2. Scott Munroe did not give the coaches and GM a warm fuzzy feeling. It's hard not to feel a little bad for the guy, who by all accounts seems like he has the potential to be a backup at least on par with the guys we called our starters last year. He must have expected a legitimate shot to be the #2 guy while DP continues his "recovery". And given the fact that he would be backing up a guy who just received his AARP card, a few starts along the way would not be unexpected.
3. Familiarity does NOT breed contempt. A team with a former goalie as GM and coach suddenly developed the deepest pool of talent (perhaps not in terms of quality, but quantity) at the position in the NHL. Too bad our GM and coach aren't former skilled scorers, we'd be talking Cup contention, baby!
4. Snow's desire to add an enforcer is not as strong as we'd like it to be. I'm sure he's working some angles, but to add another goalie with the lack-of-enforcer elephant still in the room says something to me.
Through all this, I wish DP a complete recovery. He's become the in vogue whipping boy of the fanboy commenters on Botta's and Logan's blogs. But for many, many games he was our best player, and he stole many a win for us along the way. There's no doubt we are a better team with a healthy Ricky in the crease.
Wednesday, July 8, 2009
Today's press conference was a success in that there were about 500 people (my estimate) that showed up to the Nassau Coliseum on a weekday afternoon to give our #1 pick a warm welcome to Long Island. For Tavares, despite generally showing little emotion, I'd have to imagine it's reassuring to see such a nice turnout in what has likely been described to him as a poor hockey market. To the fans in attendance, however, the festivities were a bit ho-hum. Maybe I'm subconsciously comparing it to the environment back at the Draft Party, but more likely it's a reaction to the whopping 3 overall questions asked. And pretty terrible ones at that. (Who was that last guy, anyway?)
Thursday, July 2, 2009
As far as playoff-less offseasons go, this year's is unquestionably the most exciting in the recent history of the team. Days after the season ended, we had the drama of the Draft Lottery. My heart-rate increased with each envelope that was opened. I started to settle down a bit after Colorado was revealed at #3, figuring even if Tampa won they would take Hedman. Still, I nearly hit the ceiling when we secured that #1 spot and John Tavares.
But a funny thing happened on the way to ordering my new #91 (or will it be #61?) jersey. Garth decided to get all cutesy and throw some serious doubt into what seemed like the obvious and inevitable decision. For the next two months, I was run through the emotional wringer trying to decipher the hints, clues, and flat-out misinformation slowly funneled out to the public. There was a lot of pro-Hedman sentiment emerging. Was it the dastardly Candian media trying to mess with our young, impressionable GM's head? For my own sanity, I'm done trying to rationalize all that went on. Things hit a new level of crazy a week or so before the Draft, when suddenly flavor-of-the-week Duchene was THE GUY. I'm not ashamed (ok maybe just a bit) to admit I had a few nights of fitful sleep last week hoping this organization would not make another colossal error. Hearing the right name called on Friday was a catharsis to a long, emotional-roller-coaster of a summer.
Before I could even catch my breath, though, it was July 1 - Free Agency Frenzy! The adrenaline starts pumping again, despite Garth doing his best to temper expectations. Suddenly, despite logic dictating otherwise, I'm imagining Komiksarek accepting a big hometown discount to join the Isles. I think, maybe Mike Cammelleri would welcome the challenge of restoring pride to a once great franchise.
Well, as big name after big name fell off the board, I started to think a little more clearly. I was actually yearning for the good old days of Jon Sim, whose signing was a tsunami compared to the splash we made yesterday. No disrespect to Roloson, who under the circumstances is a good signing. It was just ho-hum considering there was no real surprise there.
So now we are starting the dog days of summer. Other than a modest FA signing or two, there won't be much going on until camp opens. So here, as a service to you faithful reader, are a few suggestions to help get you through the next 3 months:
- Go see The Hangover. Usually great comedies take a little time to grow on me. Not this one. I can't remember the last time I laughed that hard in the movies.
- Take a trip to Europe to catch some dates from Faith No More's summer tour. The best band of the 90's is Reunited and it feels so good.
- Read some classic Paul Auster - I'd start with Leviathan or Moon Palace, and work your way towards Mr. Vertigo and the New York Trilogy.
- Head up to New Paltz and so some rock scrambling at the Mohonk Preserve. Head up to Bonticou Crag for a challenging and rewarding climb.
Keep checking in for regular updates throughout the summer, and feel free to follow Carey303 for all you twitterers. Until next time...