New York Islanders 2016-2017 Player Grades: Travis Hamonic
It has been an emotional roller coaster for Travis Hamonic and the New York Islanders since he made a trade request two seasons ago.
He rescinded his request later that year and won the hearts of many of the fans. Although, a poor 2016-17 season might have fans rescinding their love for him. Make no mistake about it, the New York Islanders had high hopes for Travis Hamonic coming into the 2016-17 season.
He was coming off a down year that was surrounded by the constant attention of his request to be traded to a Western Conference team for personal reasons. We all wanted to see the 2014-15 version of Hamonic, the same player that tied his career high in goals (5), and set new career highs in assists (28), points (33), and +/- (15). Unfortunately, we just saw more regression out of Hammer.
Like the rest of his teammates, there was poor play all over the ice for the first couple of months of the season. The defense was an absolute liability between the inconsistency and the injuries and was probably a big factor as to why the goaltending appeared unsteady at times, especially Jaroslav Halak.
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The blame could be put on the players but some of it has to go towards former head coach Jack Capuano and his refusal to break up the Nick Leddy and Hamonic defense pairing.
The two were definitely not a match made in heaven and you saw that night in and night out. The Islanders would’ve probably fared better putting two traffic cones out there. Once they were broken up, Leddy’s stats began improving whereas Hamonic’s dreadful season kept spiraling out of control.
No matter which defenseman was paired with him, he just couldn’t find any consistency to his game. It also didn’t help that he missed nearly two months with a knee injury and the final six games of the regular season after suffering a thumb injury after a fight with the Flyers’ Dale Weise.
Hamonic is a great defensive defenseman with some offensive skill but the stats were absolutely atrocious. He finished the year with 14 points (3-11) and a -21 rating in just 49 games played.
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However, he is a major minutes eater for the Isles blue line as he once again averaged over 20 minutes of TOI, something he has done in each of his seven years in the NHL. Things will need to turn around for Hamonic next year because the Islanders have a stockpile of defensemen waiting in the wings and he could find himself out of a job or playing for a different team.
Final Grade: D-