New York Islanders Need To Play Ryan Pulock Right Away
By Charles Baldi
The New York Islanders don’t hate Ryan Pulock. I mean how could they? He’s one of their top prospects and possesses a 105mph slapshot. However, there is cause for concern as Pulock has been a healthy scratch for the first three games this season.
Let’s go back to game five between the New York Islanders and the Lightning. In the last couple of seconds of that game, the announcers were praising Ryan Pulock. They were saying how the future of the Isles blueline is bright with this kid up and coming. Pulock stepped up for the Islanders in the playoffs that year as their defense was decimated by injuries.
Fast forward to today and you would think that Pulock is a mainstay on defense and the Isles are finally reaping the benefits on their former first-round pick. Based on that testimony anyways.
Unfortunately, this is not the case at all. Like I said earlier, Pulock has been scratched for all three games in the 2017-18 season and has played only 16 games the past two seasons for the New York Islanders.
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Success In Bridgeport
Last year, Pulock started the season in Bridgeport before being called up to cover for an injured blueline. He’d, unfortunately, break his foot in the very first game. Once he was all healed up he was sent to AHL Bridgeport and was pretty much forgotten after that. Even though he had a great season, finishing second on the Sound Tigers with 46 points in 55 games played.
Many thought this was because former head coach Jack Capuano preferred to give ice time to his veterans. But Capuano is gone, Pulock should have every chance to be playing in the Isles top 4 on defense. Pulock was thought to fill in the role that was left when Travis Hamonic was traded to the Flames.
Three games into the season and Pulock is the eighth defenseman. He has lost out on playing time to Dennis Seidenberg, Adam Pelech, and Scott Mayfield. A player with Pulock’s talents should be on the ice helping contribute to the team.
A player with Pulock’s talents should be on the ice helping contribute to the team. Especially considering the Isles power play is 0/10 on the season so far.
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Maybe Pulock’s defensive game is just too subpar. We all know he has the offensive skill set but what about the defense? If the Islanders feel he can’t be an NHL defenseman then they must make a decision. There’s no point in letting him sit in the press box and you can’t send him to the AHL because he’ll need to clear waivers. Doug Weight and Co. should give him a shot and see what he can do.