New York Islanders Should Name Thomas Greiss Starter
By David Lazar
Ever since Billy Smith and Chico Resch formed a deadly duo in the New York Islanders net in the 80s, the Islanders haven’t had a steady goalie tandem. Jaroslav Halak and Thomas Greiss will look to change that. One will need to take the starting role, and I think it’s Thomas Greiss.
A few days ago, my fellow contributor wrote a very convincing article about why the New York Islanders should name Jaroslav Halak starting goaltender. While I want to think back to Jaroslav Halak’s all-star 2015-2016 season and think he will replicate it, the reality is that he won’t.
Last season, Jaroslav Halak was sent down to the AHL, where he played the majority of his season for the Bridgeport Sound Tigers. Before his demotion, Halak was dreadful and was the main reason the Islanders got off to the atrocious start they did.
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Halak was 14-15-6 before he was waived last season, looking like he was on another planet at times. His 3.23 goals-against average and .904 save percentage failed to give the Islanders a chance to win. Which made an already shaky team even worse.
While Jaroslav Halak did play well after being called up later in the season, Thomas Greiss gives the Islanders the most stable option in net. When not overworked, Greiss is the epitome of consistency, and he is the better option over Halak.
Greiss Is the Future
When Garth Snow and the New York Islanders signed Thomas Greiss to a three-year, $10 million dollar extension, it was apparent that he would be the starter for the duration of the contract.
Just because Halak had a nice stretch of games after being called up should not change that.
Greiss is the goaltender who saved the Islanders season and led the Isles to their first Stanley Cup series victory in 23 seasons. Greiss is the goaltender who rejuvenated the Islanders last season after Doug Weight was hired, catapulting the team from the bottom of the NHL to the middle, before wearing down.
The Islanders owe so much to Thomas Greiss, and the crease should be his to lose next season. He has the potential to grow into a top NHL goalie, but in order to do so, he can’t be stuck behind a 32-year old goalie who was waived last season.
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A Tandem Led by Greiss Is the Way to Go
Thomas Greiss has done nothing to lose his starting job, and hopefully, Doug Weight notices this and names him the starter. A Halak-Greiss duo has tremendous potential, but Greiss should be the goalie getting the majority of the starts.
For the Islanders to be the most successful, Greiss should play around 50 games, and Halak should play around 30. This will enable the Islanders to be able to choose their match-ups, and make sure they always have a rested goalie at hand.
Both Greiss and Halak are very capable goaltenders. Greiss will look to learn from last season’s mistakes and Halak will strive to play similar to how he did at the conclusion of last season.
Next: Islanders Should Name Halak Starter
That is why both goaltenders should split playing time. However, I feel that due to Greiss’ experience and potential to improve, he should be named the starting goaltender of the New York Islanders.