What William Dufour and Matthew Maggio can bring to the NY Islanders

Boston Bruins v New York Islanders
Boston Bruins v New York Islanders / Bruce Bennett/GettyImages
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We're less than two months away from the NY Islanders beginning pre-season play, and the anticipation is starting to build. While there's hype for the Isles to begin their quest to return to the Stanley Cup Playoffs, there's a bit of a buzz around the Bridgeport Islanders that's been missing for quite some time.

The B-Islanders will have the organization's top-two prospects playing together this season in William Dufour and Matthew Maggio. These aren't your average top prospects, as both were drafted in the fifth round as overage players. In their final seasons of junior hockey, the two managed to capture the MVP trophy in their respective leagues and look to join forces in Bridgeport.

Dufour debuted in Bridgeport last season, having what can be considered a successful rookie campaign. He made it clear that his domination at the junior level wasn't due to just being an older, stronger player, but that he has what it takes to compete at the next level. His 48 points (21 goals, 27 assists) were good enough for sixth-best among all rookies as he looks to improve during his sophomore season.

Maggio spent last season tearing up the OHL, finishing as the league's leading point producer and goal scorer. He debuted with Bridgpeort at the end of last season, contributing two assists in his three games, but could take some time to become accustomed to the higher pace of play and physicality of the pro game. Where he was one of the league's oldest players last year - he'll now be the young gun going up against fully grown men every night.


While the two have similar skill sets, there's hope that one, or both, can contribute to the NHL Islanders at some point this season, though it may be a longshot.

Both are known for their high-level scoring capabilities. Dufour has already done so at one of the highest levels, but it's yet to be seen if Maggio's success will carry over. When it comes to skating, Maggio has the upper hand. He may not be the fastest or most agile on his edges, but once his legs get moving, he can pick up enough speed to keep up with play. Dufour on the other hand, takes much more to get going, yet he's made it a point of emphasis for his off-season regiment.

When it comes to physicality, the edge has to go to Dufour. At 6'2" and 215 lbs, he has three inches and 30 lbs on Maggio and is willing to use every bit of it. He may not be among the league leaders in hits, but when the opportunity presents itself, Dufour doesn't hesitate to engage physically.

What will it take to receive a call-up?

It's still too early to tell if both or neither will contribute to the NHL in any capacity this season, as the team's health will be the determining factor. Dufour got his feet wet in the NHL last season despite seeing only 6:48 of ice time, but the hunger to get back to the show should be a driving force for him throughout the season. He'll have to improve on his success from last season, taking his game to an even higher level.

Maggio needs to set a similar pace to what Dufour did for the team last year. Though it may be asking a lot to ask a kid just entering the league to light up the scoreboard, that's what many people expect of him due to his track record in juniors. Turning 21 just a month into the season, he'll need to mature quickly, as the organization has high hopes for a player who was once passed on by all 32 teams.

The two may see time on the same line in Bridgeport as they look to build chemistry right off the bat. Hudson Fasching is evidence that even the least expected players can become NHL regulars. The two will be present at the Islanders training camp, where they'll look to leave a lasting impression on the front office and coaching staff in hopes of working their way into an NHL role.