Josh Ho-Sang has been sent back down to the Bridgeport Sound Tigers by the New York Islanders. For reasons that aren’t immediately clear to anyone.
Before being called up Josh Ho-Sang was on an absolute tear in the AHL. He was scoring at will and with ease. His play was forcing the New York Islanders to end his AHL exile and call him to the big leagues. They did just that. And today they sent him back down. For…reasons.
Josh Ho-sang was up with the New York Islanders for ten games and scored two points before they sent him back down the AHL for…well..who knows.
There doesn’t seem to be a good reason for sending Josh Ho-Sang down the AHL considering what he provided offensively and what his underlying numbers show. That’s before you consider that there were way better options that the Islanders could have used to return to the AHL over Josh Ho-Sang.
He Was Good. They Had Better Options
Sending Josh Ho-Sang down to the AHL doesn’t make sense on two fronts. First, what he was doing on the ice was a net positive for the Islanders and his teammates. Secondly, the Isles have better options as a tribute to the AHL as Valtteri Filppula returns.
Just look at the impact that Josh Ho-Sang on his teammates. His ability to generate puck possession was tangible for anyone on the ice with him. Every player (minus Adam Pelech) jumps from a negative puck possession (>50%) to positive puck possession(<50%).
Then consider his shot rates in relations to everyone else on his team. He’s head and shoulders above anyone in a New York Islanders jersey. Including Mathew Barzal. No one is better for puck possession on this team than Josh Ho-Sang.
And then consider the other options the Islanders had at their disposal that they could have used to send down to the AHL. Michael Dal Colle is on the roster. He’s not been anywhere near as impactful as Josh Ho-Sang, yet he remains. I like Dal Colle, but Josh Ho-Sang’s impact is greater, even if he’s playing on the third line.
Or how about Tom Kuhnhackl? He can certainly be sent down to the AHL over Josh Ho-Sang. He might have to clear waivers but he’ll likely easily clear waivers. Even if he doesn’t, is that a problem for the Islanders? If someone else wants to take him and his $700,000 cap hit, be my guest.
Real talk: Is Tom Kuhnhackl this year’s Jean-Francois Berube? Is he un-waivable (even though they did so in October)
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Sending Josh Ho-Sang down to the minors wouldn’t be so controversial, or would at the very least be justifiable if the Isles didn’t have better options already there on the roster.
Conspiracy theory: Lou is working on a trade and the recipient team needs an incoming player to already be on an AHL roster and not take up and active NHL slot? Nope. Even that doesn’t make any sense.