Kukla's Korner Hockey
If Rick Dipietro gets anywhere close to healthy, look for Islanders GM Garth Snow to offer either Dwayne Roloson or Martin Biron to the Red Wings.
-Mark Spector of Sportsnet. Read more NHL notes from Mark…
via Katie Strang of Isles Files at Newsday,
First and foremost, Rick DiPietro absolutely did not decline to be a part of last night’s introduction ceremony.
Essentially, it was an oversight and here’s what Islanders President Chris Dey had to say on the matter:
“We made a mistake and left Rick out of the introductions. It was nothing intentional, but we are glad to hear that fans wanted to hear him introduced by the team,” Dey said. “We are all looking forward to his return to the lineup.”
from Arthur Staple of Newsday,
They were gone, plain and simple. One of the best NHL teams of the last 30 years was packed up and ready to leave its only home, frustrated by the politics of trying to get a new arena.
“It is time to take control of our own destiny,” the team’s owner said at the time. “We will begin to explore options in cities outside Pennsylvania.”
Mario Lemieux spoke those words a little less than three years ago.
If there’s still hope for the Islanders to stay on Long Island, to stay on the spot of land they’ve occupied for 35 years, the Penguins, last night’s opponent, could serve as the best example of that hope.
continued plus mor hockey topics…
from Brian Compton of NHL.com,
Wang is slated to meet with town Supervisor Kate Murray early next week after the latter phoned the Isles’ owner on Friday afternoon. Clearly, when the two sit down, Wang will express his displeasure with the lack of movement from the town board. He’ll also deliver a message to Murray face-to-face.
“No more games,” a disappointed Wang said on Saturday night at the Coliseum, where his Islanders opened the 2009-10 season against the Pittsburgh Penguins. “I want a yes or a no. Tell me what you want, then I can tell you if I can or can not do it. Two years have gone by … we’re going to meet now?”
It’s certainly disheartening news for Islanders fans who have voiced their support for a project that has been in the works for several years. County Executive Tom Suozzi, who dropped the puck at center ice on Saturday night, is dumbfounded by the lack of movement on Hempstead’s part, as well as Murray’s phone call to Wang on Friday.
via Dan Martin of the NY Post,
“Next week he should be able to ramp up his workouts on the ice,” Gordon said after the team worked out in Syosset yesterday. “It’s working on more technique. Everything is pretty controlled right now, the next step is to make it more game-like . . . moving off passes, multiple shots, recoveries, everything that would come up in the course of a normal practice, but do it in a controlled environment.”
DiPietro is trying to be patient.
“I’m obviously frustrated,” the goalie said. “I’d like to be on the ice right now, skating with the team and have a regular training camp and not have to worry about being injured and rehab every day. But this is part of the bigger picture.”
In case you missed multiple reports, Rob Schremp was claimed by the Islanders today.
added 12:32pm, via Katie Strang of Isles Files at Newsday,
“It was something Scott [Gordon] and I talked about yesterday when he was put on waivers,” Islanders general manager Garth Snow said. “For us it’s a situation where we can give a highly-skilled player with great vision on the ice a new opportunity. It’ll be a good change in scenery for him.”
Said Scott Gordon: “He’s got incredible skill.”
“He has the opportunity of a second chance. What he does with it is in his hands.”
from Damien Cox of the Spin at the Toronto Star,
Five years after announcing the 150-acre Lighthouse Project, Wang still hasn’t seen a shovel in the ground. The scheme would include a new arena, commercial and residential development including a canal and all kinds of goodies, so naturally there are multiple layers of bureaucracy and politics to wade through, just as there would be in the GTA if such a plan were ever proposed.
Wang has complained the process is taking far too long, which is why he has set an unofficial deadline, and why local politicos are balking.
“We don’t tell them when they have to bring in a Stanley Cup,” said one town official quoted in Newsday.
That’s nasty. The once-great Isles have a lease at Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum until 2015, but we already know from Phoenix the NHL doesn’t much worry about that stuff.
So into this maelstrom of insolvency and uncertainty goes Tavares. Stamkos had to deal with a lot of on-ice and off-ice issues in Tampa last season and survived, so theoretically so can Tavares.
It won’t be easy. But it helps that not as many people are watching the Islanders as once did.
from Sandra Pettie of Newsday,
Although most of the questioning was polite, the developers - New York Islanders owner Charles Wang and developer Scott Rechler - appeared frustrated and at times ill-prepared for the questions about traffic, height of buildings and whether the developers would sell off parts of the project.
Town board members repeatedly asked for specific commitments, but the developers declined to make them. Instead, they extolled what they say are the project’s virtues - creating jobs, serving as a magnet for new industry and keeping young people on Long Island.
from Jim Baumbach of Newsday,
The Islanders came here hoping to be barreled over with support from a city supposedly desperate for its own NHL team. And how did the people of Kansas City react? With one huge, collective yawn.
The support for the preseason game against the Kings was so poor that every upper-deck section was blocked off by huge black curtains. You know, to block the many, many rows of empty seats.
Some threat, eh?
You know what this half-empty arena looked like? Any other Islanders home game.
from Randy Kovitz of the Kansas City Star,
When the New York Islanders approached Tim Leiweke about scheduling a preseason game at the Sprint Center, one name popped into his mind.
“We looked at the Islanders and thought, ‘They might have the first pick of the NHL draft,’ ” said Leiweke, president of AEG, which manages the Sprint Center. “Tavares is amazing. To have him coming into Kansas City is a great thing.”
Unfortunately for Kansas City, Tavares, a forward expected to be the next Wayne Gretzky and Sidney Crosby rolled into one, won’t be part of a split squad when the Islanders face the AEG-owned Los Angeles Kings at 7 tonight at the Sprint Center.
Tavares, the first overall pick of the 2009 draft, played in the Islanders’ win over Calgary on Sunday night in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, assisting on a goal on his 19th birthday. Tavares and half his teammates flew home Monday, and he will be showcased when the Islanders play their first home exhibition game Wednesday night against New Jersey.
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