New York Islanders Mid-Season Player Grades
The Third Line
The third line is the no man’s land of depth on a team. They clearly aren’t the cream of the crop on the team’s roster, but they also aren’t that checking line used sparingly during the course of a night’s events.
This is fairly true for the Islanders except for perhaps Josh Bailey who slots in at the third line based on these rankings. Even though Bailey’s been a standout for the Islanders this season.
The way this grading was setup is, unfortunately, unfair to Bailey because it places a premium on goals, and Bailey just isn’t a goal scorer. He’s a pass first guy. And his 1.58 assists/60 reflect that. Only 4% of the league do a better job than Bailey.
Cal Clutterbuck is a fourth line player. That’s not a slight on his abilities. But he’s the type of player who can grind it out for a team. He’ll do just about everything well. So honestly, I was surprised to see him this high. If not for that terrible team-wide Corsi-differential he might have pushed higher up this ranking.
Brock Nelson has been Brock Nelson. Putting in a few goals here and there. He’ll hit his 20-25 goals and 40-50 points on the season. But his once impact in terms of driving possession for his team are absolutely dreadful. But that’s what Isle sfan expect to see from Brock Nelson. He’s a great depth player.