Islanders That Never Were: Brad Marchand
By Matt O'Leary
In the 2006 draft, the New York Islanders had the chance to take Brad Marchand, instead, they traded back. It didn’t work.
In June of 2006, the New York Islanders announced Neil Smith as the new General Manager. His tenure lasted just over a month as he was replaced by then backup goalie Garth Snow, who retired and took over the job.
That would be like if the Islanders fired Lou Lamoriello and made Thomas Greiss the GM, it’s absolutely insane that it happened, 14 years later and I still can’t believe it.
Anyway, it’s hard to mess something up in 41 days but Neil Smith had one pretty bad blunder using revisionist history. In the 2006 draft, the Boston Bruins traded up in the third round with the Islanders for pick 71 and in exchange the Isles received picks 98 and 126.
Those picks turned into James Delory and Shane Sims. Of the two, only Sims ever played for the Islanders as Delory went to Vancouver. Sims played one game in 2010-2011 and then went to play in the ECHL, Denmark, Austria, and Italy before retiring in 2016.
With the 71st pick, the Bruins nabbed Brad Marchand. Marchand was nearly a point per game player in the QMJHL in his draft year. That then went up to an 80 point player (33 goals, 47 assists) in 47 games.
Marchand made his way over to the AHL where he quickly became dominant. He had 59 points in his first season and in 2009-2010 he had 32 points in 34 games before getting called up to the NHL.
Early in his NHL career, Marchand was a player who would give you 40-50 ish points and was just a solid player. In his age 27 season he had a career-high of 61 points, again solid numbers, and since then has turned into a star.
He followed that up with 85 points in back to back years, a 100 point season last year, and 87 points in 70 games this year. He’s scored 30 goals or more in a season since 2015-2016 and would’ve hit it again this year if the season didn’t come to a stop.
A winger who can pop in 30+ goals sounds pretty nice right about now, doesn’t it? Marchand is good but he doesn’t come without some oddities to his game. He’s been known to lick players
Is Marchand annoying? Absolutely, I’m sure if he was on our team we’d probably feel a little differently about his antics.
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So while technically, he was never a member of the Islanders they literally traded away the pick that was used to select him. Not even Neil Smith, who was on the job for just over a month, can go without at least a little bit of criticism.