The New York Islanders were overlooked in the USA Today Sports’ NHL Season preview. What do they have to do to gain national respect?
The New York Islanders are fresh off their first playoff series win since 1993, yet for some reason they are expected to take a step back. According to USA Today Sports the Islanders won’t have as good of a season as they did last year.
There one reason for the step back is relying on younger players. Didn’t the Islanders bring in three veterans in free agency?
The Isles added P.A. Parenteau, Andrew Ladd and Jason Chimera in the offseason. It would be one thing if they said they didn’t do enough to replace Kyle Okposo and Frans Nielsen. That’s debatable at least, I think they did enough to replace the guys they lost but that is a respectable take. Relying on youth too much is 2015 criticism, it’s dated.
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I don’t see how what the Islanders did correlates to taking a step back. They are a team that relies heavily on John Tavares if anything. He can carry this team as we saw in the playoffs.
USA Today thinks the Islanders will be a 92 point team an eight point drop off from last year.
What did the Rangers and Flyers do in free agency to show they are better than the Islanders? The two teams are coming off a playoff appearance. Although they both took first round exits.
So a team that went to the second round, a team that added veterans who have a lot of playoff experience, and a team with a star in his prime will take a step back?
How is this team so consistently overlooked? Are they a perfect team? No. Are they particularly well coached? No. But, with the top line of Ladd-Tavares-Parenteau, a strong defensive group, and two capable goalies it isn’t crazy to expect their third straight 100 point season.
The Metropolitan Division is strong. The two top dogs are clearly the Penguins and the Capitals and in my opinion the Islanders are the third best team. To have them at fifth best and holding the last playoff spot in the East is a joke.
First Puck Daddy and now USA Today completely overlooked the Isles. At least there’s one positive, the Islanders have some bulletin board material now.