New York Islanders Top 5 Bill Torrey Shrewdest Draft Picks

Bill Torrey of the Florida Panthers (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
Bill Torrey of the Florida Panthers (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images) /
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CHICAGO, IL – JUNE 23: Bill Torrey of the Florida Panthers attends his 50th Draft at the 2017 NHL Draft at the United Center on June 23, 2017 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images) /

Bill Torrey was General Manager for the New York Islanders for close to twenty years. He said he wanted to build the team through the NHL Entry Draft, and boy did he. Here are his five best finds.

On Wednesday, we lost the greatest New York Islanders General Manager ever. For close to twenty years bow-tie Bill Torrey was the man making all the decisions for the Islanders.

He was the man responsible for four straight Stanley Cup victories. A feat only accomplished three times in NHL history. He won six conference titles and six division titles. And his team won 19 straight playoff series. A record that has yet to be broken across all major sports.

He was The Architect.

From the time he took the reigns in 1972, his plan was to build this team through the entry draft. It just made more sense long term to draft players as teenagers and turn them into NHLers rather than overpay for veterans that you might only have for a handful of seasons. And he did just that.

What were his best finds though? Where did Bill Torrey make a pick that other team completely whiffed on? That means we won’t be talking about Denis Potvin, taken first overall in 1973, or even Clark Gillies that was taken fourth overall in 1974.

We’re talking about players that were drafted later in the first round or even way later in the draft. As you’ll see from this list, Bill Torrey had an incredible eye for talent.