New York Islanders: A Look Inside Training Camp
The New York Islanders turned a lot of heads last season. Before the 2018-2019 season, a lot of people expected them to be one of the worst teams in the NHL because they lost John Tavares to the Toronto Maple Leafs in free agency.
New York had a new head coach last season in Barry Trotz. Trotz got the most out of his players. He was the head coach of the Washington Capitals for the past four seasons before that and Barry Trotz won a Stanley Cup Title with Washington in 2017-2018.
Lou Lamoriello also became the general manager.
The Islanders were able to claim the number two seed in the Metropolitan Division. They swept the Pittsburgh Penguins out of the playoffs, but New York was swept out of the playoffs in the next round by the Carolina Hurricanes.
The New York Islanders did not make enough moves in the offense to upgrade the offense and that has people wondering whether or not they are going to take a step back. The New Jersey Devils, the Philadelphia Flyers, and the New York Rangers all got better in the offseason.
The Pittsburgh Penguins, the Washington Capitals, the Carolina Hurricanes, and the Columbus Blue Jackets also made it to the playoffs last season as well. The Metropolitan Division will be the toughest division in the NHL this season.
The Islanders will be playing at two home arenas once again this season. One is the Barclays Center in Brooklyn. The other is the Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum.
New York hopes to be playing at their new arena in Belmont starting in the 2021-2022 season. It could be interesting to see how it works. Especially since there is a plan in place to build a train station in Elmont.
The New York Islanders should have stayed at the Barclays Center. Or, at least went to Queens near Citi Field for a new arena. They should not be playing in Belmont in the near future.
The projected starting lines for New York this season will be Anders Lee–Mathew Barzal–Jordan Eberle, Anthony Beauviller-Brock Nelson–Josh Bailey, Josh Ho-Sang-Derrick Brassard-Michael Dal Colle, and Matt Martin–Casey Cizikas–Cal Clutterbuck.
the Islanders signed Varlamov to a four-year deal in the offseason. He was with the Colorado Avalanche last season. Philipp Grubauer became the full-time starter with Colorado.
The New York Islanders decided to let go goalie Robin Lehner in the offseason. He was fantastic in his lone season with the team and Lehner won the Vezina Trophy.
Mathew Barzal is also one of the most underrated players in the NHL.
Defenseman Devon Toews could very well snag a starting defenseman spot from somebody. He played in 48 games last season and Toews scored five goals and recorded 13 assists. His plus/minus was 7.
Defenseman Sebastian Aho (23 years old) and defenseman Noah Dobson (19 years old) could be two other defensemen that could make noise in training camp and potentially make the team.
Forward Kiefer Bellows (21 years old) also has a solid chance to make the roster as well this season. If not, it won’t be long until he makes his NHL debut.
Goalies Christopher Gibson, Linus Soderstrom (23 years old), and 2019 third-round pick Jakub Skarek (19 years old) will also be names to keep an eye on during training camp. Gibson for right now is the third goalie if anyone gets hurt. Nonetheless, Soderstrom is a highly rated prospect in New York’s prospect pool.
The New York Islanders have not announced a date for training camp yet. They will begin the preseason on Monday, September 16 against the Philadelphia Flyers on the road. New York will begin the regular season on Friday, October 4 against the Washington Capitals at the Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum.
Do you see the New York Islanders making a return to the playoffs? Leave a comment below.
Slap a shot over to IroniqMedia for all of your NHL coverage.
Follow Glenn on Twitter @glennkaplan13.