Editorials

New York Islanders: Letting George McPhee Walk Was A Huge Mistake

By Matt O'Leary
CHICAGO, IL - JUNE 24: (L-R) George McPhee of the Vegas Golden Knights and Lou Lamoriello of the Toronto Maple Leafs talk prior to the 2017 NHL Draft at the United Center on June 24, 2017 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
CHICAGO, IL - JUNE 24: (L-R) George McPhee of the Vegas Golden Knights and Lou Lamoriello of the Toronto Maple Leafs talk prior to the 2017 NHL Draft at the United Center on June 24, 2017 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images) /
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The New York Islanders missing out on making George McPhee their General Manager was a huge mistake, and something that’ll haunt them for a while.

Garth Snow has been on the job for 12 years with very little to show for. Of course, New York Islanders fans have been calling for his head for years and rightfully so. Unfortunately, the Islanders had the perfect replacement for Garth working for them and let him get away.

After being fired by the Washington Capitals in 2014, George McPhee was added to the Islanders staff as a special advisor to the General Manager and the Vice President in September of 2015.

McPhee stayed with the organization for just 10 months before taking over as the Vegas Golden Knight’s G.M. McPhee has done wonderful things with Vegas in their first year in existence.

He has his team, in their first year of existence, tied for the Western Conference lead in points. No expansion team has ever been this good this quick but McPhee has hit all the right buttons for Vegas.

McPhee essentially drafted a team of nobodies. In the Expansion Draft last June, he had the opportunity to choose a player who was left exposed. Most of these players weren’t and still really aren’t “Franchise building blocks”.

Yet, McPhee has this group of misfits who nobody wanted with the best record in the West. Marc-Andre Fleury is the highest paid player on the team and he only makes $5.75 million.

If George Mcphee could build a team this successful, this quick, while on a budget I’m quite certain he would do a better job than Garth Snow has.

Think about how embarrassing this is. Over the last six years, John Tavares only cost the Islanders $5.5 million against the cap. Over that time Garth built a team that was able to move on past the first round once.

Snow’s Islanders have been boringly mediocre, and he continues to build teams with limited ceilings. Where the Islanders are now, this year has been essentially the same place they’ve been for years.

The Islanders are a fringe playoff team. That’s what Snow can build. In just a years time, with a freaking expansion franchise, George McPhee proved that he can build a contender. If the Islanders were smart, which is saying something, they would’ve hired McPhee to replace Snow as G.M. as soon as he was let go from Washington.

Next: An Andrew Ladd Buyout Isn't Even Worth It

The fact that the Islanders had the clear replacement in front of them this entire time while they continue to trot out Garth Snow built teams is maddening. That’s an indictment of ownership. The fans deserve better.

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