New York Islanders Josh Ho-Sang is ready for training camp this year. He’s going to to use last season’s embarrassing events as a learning experience to take the next step.
Josh Ho-Sang was drafted 28th overall by the New York Islanders in the 2014 NHL draft. His criticism then is much the same as it is today; is his attitude going to detract from his on-ice production?
In his draft year, Ho-Sang put up 85 points with the OHL Windsor Spitfires. His stock was flying high. But then just before the draft, the Toronto Sun ran an interview with Ho-Sang where he stated: “In three years, I’ll be the best player in this draft. And I have no doubt about that.”
It was brash, it was cocky, and it fit the Ho-Sang narrative to a tee. In that same Toronto Sun piece, author Steve Simmons says that many teams had Ho-Sang on a “Do Not Draft” list and that only 18 teams actually interviewed him pre-draft.
Ho-Sang hasn’t made any apologies for those comments, nor should he. But when he was sent packing from the first day of Islanders training camp last summer, the Ho-Sang narrative went into overdrive.
The Young man had slept in and missed the first day. It was a stupid mistake to make, one that he’s owned up to. But never the less the mistake was confirmation that Ho-Sang was above the game and the Islanders gamble in drafting him just wasn’t going to pay off.
Discipline is Learning Opportunity
Ho-Sang now enters this year’s training camp with last year’s baggage still weighing him down. Will he set an alarm, will he miss the first, second, third day? Rather than watching for him to succeed, it’s the failure that were waiting for.
For that one moment to once again confirm suspicions held, to make sure the narrative fits. But this time around Ho-Sang is ready. He says being kicked out of training camp last season was the best thing that happened to him.
“Sometimes discipline is a learning.” says Niagara IceDogs head coach Marty Williamson in an interview with Sportsnet about Ho-Sang.
And that’s what’s happened with Ho-Sang. The embarrassing demotion fueled him to learn from his mistakes. In a Sportsnet interview, Ho-Sang talks about making a routine, taking better care of himself, he’s becoming a professional. Not just some kid with incredible skills.
Will Josh Ho-Sang’s new outlook make him into a full-time NHL player next season? Probably not. Ho-Sang will probably end up in Bridgeport for most of 2016-17. The move up to Bridgeport from Niagara is exactly that, “a move up”. He’ll be a step removed from the big league.
It’s been two years since the Islanders selected him 28th overall. He’s got a lot of work to do in order to show he’s the best in his draft class.