Every season the New York Islanders invite NHL players without a contract to try out for the team at training camp. Who does Garth Snow give a try-out to this season?
Believe it or not but the New York Islanders training camp is only a weeks away. Hope you had a good summer because hockey is just around the corner.
Every season the Islanders bring in a few players on Professional Try-Outs (PTO) to round out the training camp roster. These players are generally utility players that shift between the AHL and the NHL. Or they’re just around to make up numbers and are gone the second camp is over.
Who does Garth Snow bring in this season?
It’s a simple question but it could have a few answers. The first being: “no one”. The New York Islanders have a ton of youth players that are striving for a roster spot. I’m already assuming that Joshua Ho-Sang, Ryan Pulock, and Mathew Barzal are locks to make the team.
But players like Devon Toews and Michael Dal Colle have the talent and aspiration to reach the NHL. That might just be enough for Snow and management to steer clear of the PTO pool of players.
But then again Garth Snow might feel it’s his duty to see exactly what’s out there and toss a PTO or two out there.
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Obviously, the first name that jumps to the top of any teams try-out worthy list has to be NHL legend, Jaromir Jagr. If any player is good for a flyer it’s the ageless wonder.
With 46 points last season he’s still a productive player for his advanced age. And think of all the Jagr jerseys and mulleted bobbleheads they could push on Jagr night at the Barclays?!
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From there it becomes a little less obvious, but there are still a few good names in the UFA pool that might just be worth a shot.
Rene Bourque is an interesting name. At 35-years-old his NHL career might just be over. His last stint in Colorado netted him 18 points in 65 games on a single year $650,000 contract. But if the New York Islanders need a big tough forward with a lucrative past, he’s a two time 50 point player.
Then, on the other side of the age spectrum is 26-year-old Brandon Pirri. A player that came through the Chicago Blackhawks system but hasn’t been able to stick to a team in the NHL. But at the AHL level, Pirri is fantastic.
In 238 games with the Rockport IceHogs Pirri scored a cool 200 points. He can play any position across the forward line and could immediately fill a leadership position with Bridgeport. And unlike Stephen Gionta, Pirri could fill in for an injured middle six forward for the Islanders.
It’s just a thought. The Islanders roster is far from set, and with all the kids likely making the jump to the NHL, the Bridgeport Sound Tigers might just have some places to fill.