Yesterday we spoke on how New York Islanders head coach Jack Capuano ranked in the lower tier of the NHL’s coaching totem pole. Today, the Score ran a similar ranking, but for GMs, and Garth Snow ranks in the top half.
Rankings are never an easy thing. There are generally a ton of variables to consider, and usually, there’s always at least one person that believes the ranking is the worst thing since the last time Donald Trump said something.
But for this Isles fan, and for the time being, I absolutely agree with their rankings up to now. Yesterday it was ranking the leagues 30 head coaches. Today they ranked the NHL’s 31 general managers.
Like yesterday’s ranking, today comes with a few criteria to frame the rankings: “salary cap and asset management, as well as draft history.”
The New York Islanders and their GM Garth Snow ranked 12th amongst the rest of the league. A decent ranking. There’s no reason to believe that Snow and the Islanders should have ranked any higher than this based on the criteria being used.
Past Failures Still Count, Positively
The same can’t really be said for going back down the rankings. Draft history is being used as a criteria here. And the Isles certainly have a number of great draft picks on the team and in the system, but these come from years of being closer to the bottom than the top.
The likes of Josh Bailey, John Tavares, and Ryan Strome drafted in the first round and within the top 10 come after terrible years where the Isles finished: 26th, 30th, and 27th. Great draft picks, but only thanks to bad seasons. So maybe these picks should have had a bigger negative than positive impact on rankings.
But there are some gems in the organization. Picks that came in the later round but have rounded out our roster for the better. Players like Anders Lee, Casey Cizikas, and even the recently departed Matt Martin all came in rounds four through six. So maybe the negative gets balanced out.
The strength for Snow comes from his cap management. His ability to get the most out of his team without touching the cap ceiling.
Of course, that all comes before this year, where the New York Islanders are currently $3.658 million from the cap ceiling and have yet to sign RFA and former 50-point player Ryan Strome.
In the two previous campaigns, the Islanders were well below the salary ceiling and made the playoffs on the backs of back-to-back 100+ point season.
Getting results without increased costs is a sign of success.
Though the Islanders have yet to find the success we all want, such as a fifth Stanley Cup, our GM has made some moves in order to get us close to the conversation. Even the Score things so: “And lately, [Snow’s] work at the draft could carry them into the next class of contenders.”
Let’s just hope their right.