If you take a sober look at the New York Islanders roster you’ll know that this team isn’t a cup contender. It seems that Garth Snow believes otherwise.
How many of you think the New York Islanders are going to win the Stanley Cup this season? I don’t think many of you would have them pegged as a favorite for the cup. In fact, I don’t think anyone would have the Isles as a favorite for the cup.
It’s not to say they’re bad, but there’s a reason that back in June the New York Islanders were 40-1 to win the cup this season. And why that hasn’t moved much since. They’re now somewhere between 33/1 and 40/1 depending on the service.
The Islanders while still a good team, one that can make the playoffs this season, are by no means ready to unseat some of the top teams in the league. Unless you talk to Garth Snow.
He Has To Believe
In speaking with Sirius XM, the New York Islanders GM indicated that his team is “built to win now”. (Listen to the whole clip, but the part I’m referring to is at the 7:30-minute mark).
Again, I feel it’s important to reiterate this, the Islanders are a good team. They’re going to make the playoffs. But being built to win now? I don’t see it.
They’ve got a few of the pieces that a team might need to challenge for a cup. They have that superstar center. They have some depth scoring. And they have a solid back line with enough decent quality reinforcements.
Their goaltending situation is certainly good. And if one of the two shot-stoppers can be red hot going into the post-season the Isles can certainly take down a number of teams. But that would certainly an upset.
I know this is Garth Snow’s team, and because of that, he has to believe this team should be win-now mode. Because this team’s quality is a direct result of his eleven years of work.
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What Are They Missing?
So what puts the Isles in a “built to win now” category? Like the Tampa Bay Lightning or Pittsburgh Penguins?
They could use an elite level center to plug in on that second or third line. Brock Nelson just isn’t a center. He just isn’t. A winger. You bet. But the center has too much defensive responsibility for him.
I know calls for Duchene are never-ending, but I’m convinced he isn’t coming. Or ever leaving Colorado. It seems that a three-team trade was in the works between Colorado, Ottawa, and Nashville. And then fell apart thanks to Joe Sakic.
The Isles would also need another offensive defenseman. Their slew of 20-25 point D-men is great. But to make that jump someone has to share the offensive workload with Nick Leddy. Like Tampa has with Hedman and Sergachev.
There’s no question that the New York Islanders are a playoff team. Or at least I think so. But in terms of “built to win now” I don’t see it. But man do I want to be proven wrong.