I'm re-watching Band of Brothers for the 100th time (slight exaggeration). And as I'm struggling to come up with a New York Islanders blog topic I've got the scene where a member of Easy Company is promoted from first sergeant to lieutenant. And it got me thinking, who on the Isles that can use a promotion?
And by that, I don't mean guys from the prospect pool up into the NHL squad. I'm talking about guys who are already on the squad and should be moved up the lineup.
New York Islanders roster players that could get promotion
The Islanders need more from Oliver Wahlstrom in 22-23 that's obvious. So what better way to get more out of Wahlstrom than putting him out there more? The 12:04 he averaged last season was almost a full half-minute less per night than his rookie year.
I understand he wasn't always at his best every night last season, but having his ice time continuously cut didn't necessarily help either. So next year, Wahlstrom should be one of the first names that need to be considered for a promotion on the roster.
How else can the Islanders expect him to be a top-six 20-30 goal scorer if they don't play him like one?
I know, if the Islanders are going to make a hockey trade Anthony Beauvillier is almost guaranteed to be the one heading the other way. But until that happens we have to work under the fact that he's still a New York Islander and will be next year.
If the Islanders are looking to up the pace of the offense, specifically on the top line, and play more off the rush Anthony Beauvillier is the man to help do so. We already know what he can do playing with Barzal, we saw that duo work well in 17-18. I know I'm getting back on my soapbox here, but why not try it again?
It really seems as if Matt Martin's impact on the roster is falling. His seven points in 71 games is the same return that Johnston had in less than half the games played. If not for Martin's chemistry with the other two fourth-liners (Cizikas and Clutterbuck) I'm sure the switch for Johnston would have been made by now.
I suspect that won't change to start the season, but the fourth lines leash will be short. If it continues to struggle maybe we see Johnston step in. I say maybe because it seems the Isles preferred to play Martin who was at best 80% versus a 100% Ross Johnston.