Saturday, June 27, 2009

The Day After

Luckily this was not the scene last night at Nassau Coliseum. The Islanders were in tune with the wants of most of their fans. While everyone was happy that the team was able to trade up to pick number 12 (from 26). There are starting to be rumblings about why they traded that high to pick defenseman Calvin De Haan and the associated cost in picks. My thoughts remain that they really like De Haan and they had a lot of picks (to spare?) obtained in last year's draft. My sober conclusion the day after is that they could have obtained De Haan at pick 16 and they did not need to trade up further to pick 12.

Courtesy of Wikipedia, here are the details the Islanders two moves to trade up from 26 to 12.

1. The Minnesota Wild's first-round pick went to the New York Islanders as the result of a trade on June 26, 2009 that sent a first-round pick (#16 overall), a third-round pick (#77 overall) in 2009 and a seventh-round pick (#182 overall) in 2009 to Minnesota in exchange for this pick.

2. The Columbus Blue Jackets' first-round pick went to the Minnesota Wild as the result of a trade on June 26, 2009 that sent a first-round pick (#12 overall) to the New York Islanders in exchange for a third-round pick (#77 overall) in 2009, a seventh-round pick (#182 overall) in 2009 and this pick. New York previously acquired this pick as the result of a trade on June 26, 2009 that sent a first-round pick (#26 overall) in 2009, a second-round pick (#37 overall) in 2009, a third-round pick (#62 overall) in 2009 and a fourth-round pick (#92 overall) in 2009 to Columbus in exchange for a third-round pick (#77 overall) in 2009 and this pick

On to today's picks. I'm going to start by saying I am not a professional hockey scout and I do not know a lot about the players the Islanders are taking in rounds 2-7 so I will purely analyze the trades of picks and the positions that these players play. If I come up with any interesting tidbits as I am working, I will of course include them.

As I correctly predicted (not in writing, rather while lying in bed this morning) the Islanders used the first pick in the second round, 31st overall, to select a goaltender. I figured this based upon the fact that it is general knowledge that Islanders needed depth in goal and that they picked a forward and a defenseman in the first round. The pick was 6'7" 20 year old Finnish goaltender Mikko Koskinen.

The Islanders traded their remaining second round pick (#56) to the Columbus Blue Jackets to reacquire the first pick in the third round (#62) and the first pick in the fourth round (#92). Please note that their were 31 picks in the second round due to the compensatory pick awarded to the New York Rangers as a result of untimely and sad death of their 2008 first round pick Alexei Cherepanov.

At the start of the third round, the Islanders held picks #62 and #91 (#91 was obtained in the trade that send Bill Guerin to the Pittsburgh Penguins in March 2009). With the first pick in the third round (#62), the Islanders select...another goaltender, 6'5" Swedish goaltender Anders Nilsson. Well that is the second goaltender the Islanders have picked which speaks volumes about how General Manager Garth Snow feels about goaltenders and about one particular goaltender. The Islanders then traded pick #91 to the Phoenix Coyotes for their third round pick in the 2010 NHL Draft.

At this point in the draft the Islanders had three remaining picks. The first pick in rounds four through six (#92, #122, #152).

With their fourth round pick (#92), the Islanders selected 5' 10" center Casey Cizikas. Cizikas played junior hockey last season with the Mississauga St Michael's Majors of the Ontario Hockey League (OHL).

With their fifth round pick (#122), the Islanders selected 6'1" Russian defenseman Anton Klementyev.

With their sixth round pick (#152), the Islanders selected Anders Lee. Lee is a 6'2" center out of Edina High School in Minnesota. Per Chris Botta of Islanders Point Blank, there is a good chance that Lee could end up choosing football over hockey.

The draft appears to be complete at this point for the New York Islanders unless there are any last minute trades made to obtain additional picks. I want to give special thanks to the New York Islanders, Chris Botta of Islanders Point Blank and B.D. Gallof and the crew at Islanders Independent for an exciting draft night and an exciting week leading up to the draft.

Friday, June 26, 2009

All Hail Garth Snow

So I am home now from the Draft Party at NVMC. It was quite a night. I was correct in my prediction that the Islanders would select John Tavares. Now it is not like that was a big reach, so I do not take credit here, but I am glad that Garth Snow and Ryan Jankowski did not go against the grain.

It is such a wonderful night to be an Islanders fan. The moves the Islanders made to go up to pick 12 and select Calvin De Haan came at a very reasonable cost. For all of those who were apoplectic at last years moves to trade down and select Josh Bailey, this is what it was all about.

For all the doubters out there, let it be known that Garth Snow has proven himself to be a smart General Manager. Yes, this last year, the Islanders had to suck on Chef's Salty Chocolate Balls in order to get the first overall pick in the draft. That being said, when you combine the moves and picks in the last two drafts (there are still 6 more rounds left in this draft), my respect for our starting goalie cum backup goalie cum General Manager has just increased significantly.

Further analysis to come over the weekend. Have Stanley Cup (in a few years) dreams tonight.

Updated Estimate

With over 24,000 tickets given away for the draft party, I am upping my estimate to 8,000 - 10,000 people in attendance for the draft party.

Also of course I am going to reiterate what I said back in April. It is this bloggers humble opinion that the Islanders will select John Tavares with the first overall pick in the draft.

Other than that, I am starting to get inpatient waiting for my friend John to arrive so we can leave for the Draft Party. Of course he said between 5:30 and 6:00 so I guess I should just settle down!

Wednesday, June 10, 2009


I may be a bit late on this considering Chris Botta's post on this subject today, but considering I posted a similar theory on the comment section of his blog yesterday, I'm not feeling very plagiaristic about it. Also, I have a different take on the subject.

The Public Relations/Advertising team with the Islanders are touting that 11,000 fans have grabbed their free tickets for the Islanders Draft Party scheduled to take place at Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum (NVMC) on Friday June 26th. This sounds like a lot of Islanders fans are very excited about the upcoming draft, which is absolutely true. But there is a catch to this public relations ploy.

Public Relations or PR men are a lot like advertising men who are also known colloquially madmen. They spin truth and facts about a product or event to show it in the best light and generate a buzz. Nothing wrong with this in my opinion. After all we live in a capitalistic society. However as a consumer, one should always be aware of this.

So "More than 11,000 Islanders fans have gotten their free tickets" Really? I find this rather entertaining. I would say that the whole reason why you need a ticket is so they can post this little factoid on the Islanders website. I assure you the number will keep going up taboot. After all it was only 10,000 yesterday.

So let's look at the reality of the situation. By going through the Islanders website, you can request up to six free tickets per customer. So let's use myself as an example. I requested six tickets. There is a chance, that I may use all six, but I consider it unlikely. To use all six, my son would need to attend the Draft Party after the Islanders Spring Hockey League "picnic" which coincidentally takes place at NVMC immediately before the Draft Party. My son is 14 and most likely would rather hang out with his friends on the first Friday after school ends. My girlfriend would have to be able to attend and that is iffy since she has responsibilities to her 15 year old daughter as well as to her aging father. The aforementioned 15 year old daughter would have to attend (see the comment about my son). Then my friend John would need to attend and bring either his wife or son or both. If all the above came we would need one extra ticket. I think it more likely that it will just be me and John. If that happens than four of the six tickets requested will go to waste. Using myself as a microcosm and assuming that most people requested six tickets just because they could, then 11,000 becomes 3,666.

That is one way of looking at it. There is also the possibility that many folks requested six (or even less) tickets for themselves and their friends not knowing that their friends have likewise done the same thing. Say a group of four friends, that always go to games together, each requested four tickets, not knowing that each of them has requested the tickets. All four friends are going to go to the Draft Party, but then twelve tickets will go to waste. Using this example, 11,000 becomes 2,750.

Both of the above examples do not take into account that some folks may have requested tickets on the chance that they might want to go to the Draft Party, but will then decide that they do not feel like going that night and being accosted by Sparky and his sweaty paws.

I think it likely that their will be approximately 3000 - 4000 people in attendance. Your thoughts? Hello? Is there anybody out there?