After spending months of extensive research, by watching countless hours of game tape and interviewing potential draft prospects along with their respective junior hockey league coaches, it is my pleasure - here on Islanders Point Blank - to file the first annual IPB’s 2012 NHL Mock Draft.


The 2012 NHL Entry Draft – the 50th edition – will be held on June 22-23, emanating from the Consol Energy Center in Pittsburgh, Pa.


1. Edmonton – Nail Yakupov, RW, Sarnia (OHL) – The 5-foot-11, 190-pound Yakupov has been the consensus top overall choice since the first draft rankings were announced back in September. Nine months later, no other draft-eligible prospect has made the 18-year-old winger even break a sweat. By winning the draft lottery for a third straight season, becoming the first team since the 1989-91 Quebec Nordiques to select first overall three consecutive years, the Oilers hold all the cards. Yet, despite the fact that its most glaring need is on the blue line, Yakupov’s overall skill-set might just be too much to bypass. Accepting feeds from 2011 first overall pick Ryan Nugent-Hopkins will give older Oilers fans the opportunity to relive their youth, as they envision Mark Messier feeding Wayne Gretzky back when the team won four Stanley Cups in five seasons.


2. Columbus – Filip Forsberg, LW, Leksands IF (SWE) – Is this the day that the Blue Jackets finally send seven-time, 30-goal scorer Rick Nash packing? If so, the 6-foot-2, 180-pound Forsberg would fill a glaring need. Drawing comparisons to Anaheim’s Corey Perry, the 17-year-old Forsberg would be a tremendous complement to 2010 first round selection Ryan Johansen. Yet, despite the fact that his stock has grown since arriving last week at the NHL Scouting Combine in Toronto, all indications are that he will return to his junior team in Sweden for the 2012-13 campaign.


3. Montreal – Alex Galchenyuk, C, Sarnia (OHL) – Despite only dressing for two regular season games this past season – after suffering a torn ACL - the 6-foot-2, 190-pound Galchenyuk returned to the Sting postseason line-up without missing a beat. The Wisconsin-born, Belarusian-raised center has fully recovered from his injury. He took part in all the physical tests at the NHL Scouting Combine. Scouts marvel at his playmaking abilities, believing that it was he who elevated line-mate Yakupov’s overall play at Sarnia. Canadiens fans should be excited at the prospects of 18-year-old Galchenyuk and 23-year-old winger Max Pacioretty playing off one another, in hopes of of reviving an offense that ranked 20th in the league in goals scored.


4. ISLANDERS – Ryan Murray, D, Everett (WHL) – Filling an immediate need, the 6-foot-1, 200-pound Murray, who grew up patterning his game after former New Jersey Devils defenseman and future Hall-of-Famer Scott Niedermayer, would be a steadying force to a blue line that only returns three players – Mark Streit, Travis Hamonic and Andrew McDonald – from its 2011-12 roster. The 18-year-old also played admirably for Team Canada at the recent World Championships, filling in for an injured Marc Methot. He drew rave reviews from Chicago Blackhawks defenseman Duncan Keith. The most NHL-ready defenseman would be given every opportunity to win an opening night roster spot on Long Island.


5. Toronto – Radek Faksa, C, Kitchener (OHL) – In his first season playing on North American soil, Faksa stepped into the shadows left behind by former Kitchener captain and current Colorado Avalanche forward Gabriel Landeskog and excelled. Faksa collected 67 points – 29 goals and 38 assists – in 62 games. Ranked 17th in TSN Craig Button’s latest prospect rankings, Faksa’s meteoric rise up the draft boards draws similarities to that of Ryan Strome, who was selected fifth overall by the Islanders in the 2011 draft after a late surge up the draft rankings. The 18-year-old Faksa, who is also able to slide over to the wing, draws comparisons to current Leafs forward Mikhail Grabovski.


6. Anaheim – Matthew Dumba, D, Red Deer (WHL) – The six-foot, 185-pound Dumba is the prototypical high-risk, high reward selection. Not afraid of throwing his body around, Dumba has drawn comparisons to Toronto defenseman Dion Phaneuf, despite giving up three inches and 30 pounds to the 27-year-old Leaf. As veteran defenseman Lubomir Visnovsky is considered a question mark to return to the Ducks lineup for the 2012-13 campaign, the 17-year-old Dumba – with a solid training camp – could find his way onto the Ducks’ opening night line-up to play alongside fellow youngsters Cam Fowler and Luca Sbisa.


7. Minnesota – Jacob Trouba, D, USNTDP (USHL) – Born in neighboring Rochester, Minnesota, the 6-foot-2, 205-pound Trouba showcased his talents by playing for the U.S. National Training Development Program in Ann Arbor. A stay-at-home physical defenseman in the mold of Chris Pronger, Trouba has the make-up fit for the cold winter nights in Minneapolis, St. Paul. Despite the fact that Trouba plans to attend the University of Michigan in the fall, the Wild – with patience - might be getting the draft’s top-overall defenseman in the long run.


8. Carolina – Mikhail Grigorenko, C/RW, Quebec (QMJHL) – The 6-foot-3, 200-pound Grigorenko recorded 85 points – 40 goals and 45 assists – playing for Patrick Roy and the Quebec Remparts of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League. Once looked at as a sure-bet, top-five overall pick, Grigorenko’s work ethic has come into question. Still, at this point of the draft, the offensively-challenged Hurricanes - who still have their eyes set on reuniting Eric Staal with his brother Jordan in a potential offseason trade with the Penguins - would be foolish to let an Evgeni Malkin-clone slip through its fingertips.


9. Winnipeg – Griffin Reinhart, D, Edmonton (WHL) – The 6-foot-4, 205-pound Reinhart might be the most imposing physical defenseman to be selected in the entire draft. Yet, having just completed his second full season in Edmonton, many still question whether the son of former NHL defenseman Paul Reinhart is still yet too raw to play on the NHL scene next season. Whether it has to wait an extra season or two, envision the 18-year-oldReinhart – a Shea Weber-type defenseman – clearing bodies in front of a raucous crowd at MTS Centre. He and 2008 first round pick Zach Bogosian could form a beautiful partnership.


10. Tampa Bay – Olli Maatta, D, London (OHL) – The 6-foot-2, 198-pound Maatta - just 17 years old - played his best hockey at the most opportune time for both the Knights and his personal draft standing. After collecting a respectable 32 points – five goals and 27 assists – in his first season outside of Finland, Maatta – the first overall pick in the 2011 CHL Import Draft – would became a playoff sensation playing alongside Jarrod Tinordi – a 2010 first round selection by Montreal. In 19 games, Maatta scored six goals and registered 17 assists, as he helped the Knights capture the 2012 OHL Championship Title. Maatta, who has drawn comparisons with impending UFA Ryan Suter has his sights set on playing in the NHL in the fall. He and 2009 second overall selection Victor Hedman could be a deadly duo in the Sunshine State.


11. Washington (from Colorado) – Morgan Rielly, D, Moose Jaw (WHL) – With both offensive defensemen Mike Green (RFA) and Dennis Wideman (UFA) expecting to test the free agent waters, a huge gap is left on the Capitals blue line. As John Carlson continues to mature into a bona-fide top pairing defenseman, the void on the power play – without Green or Wideman – would be glaring. Morgan Rielly, a 6-foot, 190-pound defenseman, might just be what the doctor ordered. Despite missing 50 games last season with a knee injury, the 18-year-old Rielly – who has drawn comparisons to Ottawa’s Erik Karlsson - is an offensive dynamo from the blue line. Considered by many the top offensive defenseman in the entire draft, Rielly might need some fine tuning back in Moose Jaw, but he isn’t long for an NHL invite.


12. Buffalo – Teuvo Teravainen, LW, Jokerit (Finland) – While the team continues to pursue Jordan Staal from Pittsburgh in a offseason trade, the 5-foot-10, 165-pound Teravainen would be no consolation prize to a team in dire need of scoring punch. Having played the past four seasons in his native Finland, the 17-year-old Teravainen – who has been compared to Edmonton’s Ales Hemsky - would follow in the footsteps of fellow diminutive forwards Nathan Gerbe (5-foot-5) and Tyler Ennis (5-foot-9) on a journey to upstate New York. He is a project with top-six upside and 30-goal potential.


13. Dallas – Cody Ceci, D, Ottawa (OHL) – The 6-foot-2, 205-pound Ceci more than doubled his previous two seasons’ point total – 46 - with a 60-point campaign in 64 games for the 2011-12 Ottawa 67’s. Finishing second to Niagara’s Dougie Hamilton (72) in OHL scoring for a defenseman, also helped him elevate his overall draft status. A projected top-four NHL defenseman, Ceci would provide immediate depth on an aging Stars blue line, as both Stephane Robidas and Sheldon Souray’s NHL careers are winding down. The 18-year-old Ceci has drawn comparisons to Calgary’s Anton Babchuk.


14. Calgary – Matt Finn, D, Guelph (OHL) – As both Cory Sarich and Scott Hannan head into free agency in the next couple of weeks, the Calgary Flames are sure to be looking to add quality depth on their blue line. Enter 6-foot-2, 200-pound Matt Finn. When interviewed earlier this year, Finn referred to himself as a defenseman who plays “a quiet game”. Quiet to some might mean non-descript, yet to other’s Finn’s steady play could translate into a defenseman ready to embark on a 10-to-15 year NHL career. Compared to Carolina’s Tim Gleason, the 18-year-old Finn isn’t showy or flashy, yet he might be a player who could be a building block in Alberta.


15. Ottawa – Sebastian Collberg, RW, Frolunda HC (Sweden) – No better introduction to the NHL game than learning from fellow countrymen Karlsson and Daniel Alfredsson, the 5-foot-11, 175-pound Collberg possesses a deadly snap shot. Compared to Calgary’s Mike Cammalleri, the 18-year-old Collberg could use another year or two of development time in Sweden. Yet, when ready, he should see 2011 first round pick and fellow countryman Mika Zibanejad on his line.


16. Washington – Brendan Gaunce, C, Belleville (OHL) – Mature beyond his years, the 6-foot-2, 205-pound Gaunce was named assistant captain of his OHL team at just 17 years old. Learning from older brother Cameron – a Colorado Avalanche draft pick – who himself played alongside Steven Stamkos and Michael Del Zotto, back in their school-boy days in Markham, Ontario, Brendan elevated his play in his second OHL season, collecting 68 points in 68 games. With hopes of transitioning their play from the frustrations that impending UFA Alexander Semin brought to them on a nightly basis, the Capitals need not worry about Gaunce – a future NHL captain – who will bring his proverbial lunch pail to the office and play with maximum intensity.


17. San Jose – Slater Koekkoek, D, Peterborough (OHL) – Coming off a season-ending shoulder injury, the 6-foot-2, 185-pound Koekkoek could be the type of jewel that San Jose is looking for. After suffering through another early playoff exit, transitioning a hungry Koekkoek into a veteran lineup might be the juice that this organization is needed. Learning from perennial all-stars Dan Boyle and Brent Burns could help ease Koekkoek’s transition onto the NHL scene. Compared to Vancouver’s Alexander Edler, the 18-year-old Koekkoek was recently cleared by medical doctors at the NHL Scouting Combine with full bill of health.


18. Chicago – Tom Wilson, RW, Plymouth (OHL) – Once the Windy City takes a first glance at the 6-foot-4, 205-pound Tom Wilson, they will instantly fall in love. Blue collar by nature, the 18-year-old Wilson could be the spark that this organization – frustrated by a first-round exit to Phoenix – needs. He is willing and able to engage physically. One should expect Vince Vaughn to don Wilson’s sweater just days after he steps foot on the United Center ice. Wilson draws comparisons to Boston’s Milan Lucic.


19. Tampa Bay (from Detroit) – Derrick Pouliot, D, Portland (WHL) – Needing much-needed depth on the blue line, the six-foot, 190-pound Pouliot is another one of those steady defensemen destined for a long and productive NHL career. Playing against the likes of Dumba, Rielly, Reinhart and Murray in defensive-laden Western Hockey League has matured Pouliot to the player that he is today. Finishing fourth amongst WHL defenders in points scored, the 18-year-old Pouliot couldn’t ask for two better mentors to hone his game than Lightning defensemen Eric Brewer and Mattias Ohlund.


20. Philadelphia – Brady Skjei, D, USDP (USHL) – Having already committed to the University of Minnesota, the 6-foot-2, 195-pound Skjei provides the Flyers organization a presence on the back end. As defensemen Kimmo Timonen and Chris Pronger are fully aware that their best years are behind them, the 18-year-old Skjei could be that big, physical defenseman that should help the likes of Niklas Grossmann and Braydon Coburn in the future. Yet, patience is a virtue. Don’t expect him to don a Flyers sweater for at least three seasons.


21. Buffalo (from Nashville) - Zemgus Girgensons, C, Dubuque (USHL) – Committed to the University of Vermont in the fall, the 6-foot-2, 180-pound Girgensons possesses a skill-set that have many scouts comparing him to Chicago’s Jonathon Toews. A native of Latvia, Girgensons has honed his skills stateside, playing for the USHL’s Dubuque Fighting Saints. In his two seasons in Dubuque, Girgensons has collected 104 points in 100 games. The 18-year-old Girgensons is projected to be a top-six forward on the pro level, and could provide the Sabres some desperately needed scoring punch, come 2014.


22. Pittsburgh – Tomas Hertl, LW, Slavia (CZE) – Having selected Jaromir Jagr fifth overall back in the 1990 NHL Draft, the Penguins are definitely not shy in plucking young talent from overseas. The 6-foot-2, 200-pound Hertl – who has drawn comparisons to Phoenix’s Martin Hanzal - plays a strong two-way game, and projects as a top-six forward on the NHL level. Having just completed his first full season playing for Slavia Praha HC, one would expect the Penguins to allow Hertl to develop even more, until ready.


23. Florida – Henrik Samuelsson, C/RW, Edmonton (WHL) – Son of former Pittsburgh Penguins Ulf Samuelsson, the 6-foot-2, 195-pound Samuelsson transitioned quite well to the North American game this past season. While playing 28 games for head coach Derek Laxdal and the Edmonton Oil Kings, Samuelsson scored seven goals and added 16 assists. He also racked up 42 penalty minutes, much to his father’s approval. In 17 playoff games, Samuelsson raised his play, scoring four goals and adding 10 assists, as he helped the Oil Kings capture the 2012 WHL Championship Title. For the Panthers, Samuelsson’s frame would be a welcoming addition. The 18-year-old has drawn comparisons to Anaheim’s Ryan Getzlaf.


24. Boston – Malcolm Subban, G, Belleville (OHL) – Brother of Montreal defenseman P.K. Subban – a pest to Bruins nation – Malcolm, 18, is more mild mannered that his older sibling. Subban also plays between the pipes, and has the athleticism to be a franchise goaltender. With word that Bruins net-minder Tim Thomas is unsure whether he wants to play in the 2012-13 season, the Bruins might be ready to groom a potential franchise-building goaltender. The 6-foot-1, 180-pound Subban, whom scouts compare favorably to Canadiens net-minder Carey Price, posted a 2.50 GAA in 39 games played.


25. St. Louis – Pontus Aberg, LW, Djurgardens (SWE) – A speedster off the far wing, Aberg’s lightning quick first step has already intrigued NHL scouts. The Blues, who are always looking to add quality depth up front to complement a defense that was the stingiest in the entire NHL, allowed a league-low 1.89 goals against per game. Compared favorably to Buffalo’s Thomas Vanek, Aberg’s offensive awareness is the reason why many project him to be a top-six forward when he comes stateside. The 18-year-old is expected to play for Djurgardens in 2012-13.


26. Vancouver – Colton Sissons, RW, Kelowna (WHL) – Born in Northwest Vancouver, the 6-foot-1, 190-pound Sissons would be a popular choice amongst Canucks fans. Projected to play power forward in the NHL, the 18-year-old Sissons is already mature enough to captain his WHL team at age 18. Sissons, who models his game after fellow Canuck Ryan Kesler, plays a similar two-way style alike his future mate. He should be an instant fan favorite.


27. Phoenix – Scott Laughton, C, Oshawa (OHL) – The six-foot, 170-pound Laughton models his two-way game after Los Angeles Kings center Mike Richards. In his second season in Oshawa, the 18-year-old Laughton collected 53 points – 21 goals and 32 assists – in 64 games. Projected as a second line center, Laughton might need another year of seasoning to build up his body before joining his brethren in the desert. The 18-year-old has drawn comparisons to Boston’s Brad Marchand, based on his willingness to throw his body around and having the ability to be a thorn in an opponent’s side.


28. N.Y. Rangers – Stefan Matteau, LW, USNTDP (USHL) – A product of the infamous Notre Dame Academy in Wilcox, Saskatchewan, the 6-foot-1, 207-pound Matteau is projected as a power forward on the NHL level. Matteau, son of former Rangers playoff hero Stephane Matteau, played the past two seasons for the USNTDP juniors, where he collected 19 points in 46 games. He is scheduled to play for Blainville-Boisbriand Armada in the QMJHL in the fall. The 18-year-old’s game compares favorably to current Rangers captain Ryan Callahan. Can a “Matteau, Matteau, Matteau” be in the cards for the 2015 Rangers?


29. New Jersey*(&) - Dalton Thrower, D, Saskatoon (WHL) – The six-foot, 195-pound Thrower is known for his hard-nosed, no nonsense play on the back end. Yet, this past season in Saskatoon, Thrower showed a propensity of being more of an offensive threat. He recorded 54 points – 18 goals and 36 assists – in 66 games. In his first two seasons in Saskatoon, Thrower was only able to muster 27 points in 123 games. Still, Thrower lives and dies with his intensity he brings onto the ice – night in and night out. The 18-year-old has drawn comparisons to Vancouver’s Kevin Bieksa, and would be a solid replacement to Bryce Salvador, who will be an unrestricted free agent on July 1.


30. Los Angeles* - Scott Kosmachuk, RW, Guelph (OHL) – The six-foot, 185-pound Kosmachuk collected 59 points – 30 goals and 29 assists – in his second full season at the ’O’. Known as a smooth skater with a quick release, Kosmachuk possesses a quick motor that doesn’t stop. Having an opportunity to learn from Kings captain Dustin Brown can’t help but expedite the 18-year-old’s development. He has drawn comparisons to Colorado’s Steve Downie, and should be a potential top-nine forward when he is physically ready to play in the NHL.


* - Pick to be decided between Stanley Cup Winner and Runner-up.


& - Pick might be forfeited after team circumvented the salary cap to resign Ilya Kovalchuk back in the summer of 2010.

Tags: 2012 Draft, News

Mar 24, 2017; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; New York Islanders center John Tavares (91) skates up ice with the puck against the Pittsburgh Penguins during the third period at the PPG PAINTS Arena. The Islanders won 4-3 in a shootout. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports (Charles LeClaire)
Mar 24, 2017; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; New York Islanders center John Tavares (91) skates up ice with the puck against the Pittsburgh Penguins during the third period at the PPG PAINTS Arena. The Islanders won 4-3 in a shootout. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports (Charles LeClaire)

This summer stands to be one full of franchise-defining issues for the Islanders. In a series of roundtables, SNY's Brian Erni and Andy Graziano will discuss these topics. The guys have taken on Garth Snow's potential fate, and the chances of building a new arena at Belmont Park. In the final installment, it's the chances of signing captain John Tavares to an extension…

Brian Erni, SNY.TV Twitter | Archive Posts

The Islanders have begun to prep their pitch for an extension to John Tavares. So Andy, what do you think is the linchpin to getting this thing done this summer?

Tags: John Tavares, Andy Graziano, Brian Erni
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 (Brace Hemmelgarn)
(Brace Hemmelgarn)

The Islanders are preparing their extension pitch for team captain John Tavaresreports Elliotte Friedman

Tavares, 26, is eligible to sign a contract extension with the Isles on July 1.

He is about to enter the sixth and final season of the $33 million deal he signed prior to the 2012-13 season. 

Tags: John Tavares
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 (Ed Mulholland)
(Ed Mulholland)

Brian Erni, SNY.TV Twitter | Archive Posts

As playoff hockey roars on into the second round, the Islanders faithful are back in that somewhat familiar position of waiting around for the NHL Draft. And with the lottery set to take place this Saturday night, the Isles know to a virtual certainty the ping pong balls hold no surprises for them.

The Islanders have the worst chance of moving up and grabbing the number one pick in the draft -- a 0.9 percent chance, to be exact. So while the Avalanche (18 percent), Canucks (12.1 percent), and Golden Knights and Coyotes (10.3 percent) wait around with bated breath for the right to draft Nolan Patrick, the Islanders know that they'll likely be picking 15th, saddled with the distinction of being the first team on the outside of the postseason looking in.

That doesn't mean much, though. In fact, the Isles' sprint to the finish that fell just short of the playoffs meant far more than any delusions of NHL lottery grandeur...

Tags: John Tavares, Brian Erni
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The Islanders have re-signed D Dennis Seidenberg to a one-year deal, the team announced Monday.

Seidenberg, 35, had five goals and 17 assists in 73 games played for the Isles this past season after signing a one-year deal during the offseason.

He had spent the last seven seasons with the Bruins, accumulating 23 goals and 94 assists in 401 games. He had two years remaining on his contract with Boston but the team bought out the rest of his deal in July. 

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 (Brad Penner/USA Today Sports Images)
(Brad Penner/USA Today Sports Images)

The Islanders plan to submit a bid to build a new arena at Belmont Racetrack, NHL commissioner said Friday, according to Newsday.

Bettmann said the Islanders are reviewing their options, while noting the land near Citi Field could be another potential spot for a new arena.

He added that the recently renovated Nassau Coliseum is not a long-term option.

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Brian Compton and Mike Carver are ready to wrap the season, and are joined by Islanders forward Anders Lee for a chat about all things Isles. Later, Brian and Mike do a deep dive into the official announcement that Doug Weight is the head coach, what needs to happen in the offseason, and the dirty pool which is more arena talk!

Click below to listen...

 

Tags: Anders Lee
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 (Ed Mulholland)
(Ed Mulholland)

This summer stands to be one full of franchise-defining issues for the Islanders. In a series of roundtables, SNY's Brian Erni and Andy Graziano will discuss these topics. Last week, the guys took on Garth Snow's fate and the possibility of a new team president. This week, it's the latest in talk of a new arena…

 

Brian Erni, SNY.TV Twitter | Archive Posts

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New York Islanders goalie Jean-Francois Berube (30) guards his net against the Calgary Flames during the second period at Scotiabank Saddledome. (Sergei Belski)
New York Islanders goalie Jean-Francois Berube (30) guards his net against the Calgary Flames during the second period at Scotiabank Saddledome. (Sergei Belski)

Jean-Francois Berube is not expected to return to the Islanders next season as he plans on testing free agency, according to Arthur Staple of Newsday.

Berube started seven games for New York this past season, going 3-2-2 with an .889 save percentage and 3.42 GAA.

The Islanders already have goalies Jaroslav Halak and Thomas Greiss under contract next season.

Tags: Jaroslav Halak, Thomas Greiss
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New York Islanders general manager Garth Snow (Steve Mitchell/USA Today Sports Images)
New York Islanders general manager Garth Snow (Steve Mitchell/USA Today Sports Images)

Islanders General Manager Garth Snow is likely not in danger of being fired, according to Elliotte Friedman of SportsNet.

"He is safer than many of us expected," Friedman said during Hockey Night in Canada. 

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Mar 14, 2017; Raleigh, NC, USA; New York Islanders head coach Doug Weight talks to forward Andrew Ladd (16) during the time out against the Carolina Hurricanes at PNC Arena. The New York Islanders defeated the Carolina Hurricanes 3-2 in overtime. Mandatory Credit: James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports (James Guillory)
Mar 14, 2017; Raleigh, NC, USA; New York Islanders head coach Doug Weight talks to forward Andrew Ladd (16) during the time out against the Carolina Hurricanes at PNC Arena. The New York Islanders defeated the Carolina Hurricanes 3-2 in overtime. Mandatory Credit: James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports (James Guillory)

Andy Graziano, SNY.tv: The NHL will conclude Game 2 of all first-round playoff series tonight as the Islanders begin their summer vacations after missing out on the tournament by one single point. A point that will lead to a summer that could be the most defining in franchise history.

One last time for 2016-17, I present my thoughts via the scratchpad. After writing plenty of wrap-up material this week, including my retrospective and what's next, in addition to friend and colleague Brian Erni and I discussing the future of Garth Snow, now it's my turn to sit back on the couch and appreciate the greatest game on its biggest stage.

You, the reader, are essential to the success of SNY's Islanders Point Blank. We thank you for staying with us throughout the season - visiting, reading and commenting. This job is thankless and unforgiving. At times, downright exhausting. But to know you're reaching a large contingent of passionate Islanders fans, feeding their hunger for information, makes it all worth it, whether you agree with us or not. 

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 (Ed Mulholland)
(Ed Mulholland)

This summer stands to be one full of franchise-defining issues for the Islanders. In a series of roundtables, SNY's Brian Erni and Andy Graziano will discuss these topics. First up: Garth Snow's fate and the possibility of a new team president...

Brian Erni, SNY.TV Twitter | Archive Posts

Alright, Andy. We now know Doug Weight will be back, as he'll be the main man behind the bench, but what about Garth Snow? Are the Islanders going to bring in a team president, and if so, will Snow stay on in some capacity?

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Andy Graziano, SNY.TV Twitter

This spring will be the latest in a series that has tested the mettle of the Islanders from top down -- ownership, general manager, head coach and even players are not excluded from the exercise. The spring of 2017 could, however, prove to be the most challenging and defining of all.

We are officially at the end of year-one of the Jon Ledecky/Scott Malkin era of ownership, Garth Snow remains at the helm of hockey operations and Doug Weight, he of 40 games of NHL head coaching experience, was seemingly the only option in a summer that saw at least four others looking for work who had pedigree, and some even Stanley Cups, on their resume.

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 (Brad Penner/USA Today Sports Images)
(Brad Penner/USA Today Sports Images)

Latest Update (April 12)

8:00PM: The operators of Barclays Center are attempting to get the Islanders to return to Nassau Coliseum, according to a Newsday report

The offer to move the Islanders back to their former home would include adding seats to the building. 

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 (Brad Penner)
(Brad Penner)

Andy Graziano, SNY.TV Twitter

The Islanders named Doug Weight head coach this morning, removing the interim tag from his name and assigning him the task of making it to the Stanley Cup playoffs in 2017-18 with a club that missed out by a single point this season.

GM Garth Snow, who looks to have retained his job for the upcoming season, joined Weight on a conference call announcing the move. And Snow addressed the three-headed goaltending drama that might have sunk the Islanders chances at competing for the ultimate prize a third straight season.

First,n Weight began by saying he thought long and hard about this decision over the past two days. And after discussing the matter with family and friends, came to a quick decision after being told he was the man, first and foremost, that management wanted to be the new bench boss.

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 (Sergei Belski)
(Sergei Belski)

The Islanders have taken the interim tag off Doug Weight, naming him head coach on Wednesday.

"Doug has earned this opportunity from the tremendous work he has put in over the past five seasons in our front office and especially from the time he took over as interim Head Coach earlier this season," President and General Manager Garth Snow said in a release. "His leadership and experiences from both playing and behind the bench are valuable intangibles that not every coach can translate into a winning formula. He's gained the trust and respect from our entire team, making him the best choice to become Head Coach."

Weight guided the Isles to a 24-12-4 record after taking over this season for the fired Jack Capuano.

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Mar 14, 2017; Raleigh, NC, USA; New York Islanders forward John Tavares (91) celebrates his game winning overtime goal with his teammates against the Carolina Hurricanes at PNC Arena. The Islanders defeated the Hurricanes 3-2 in overtime. Mandatory Credit: James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports (James Guillory)
Mar 14, 2017; Raleigh, NC, USA; New York Islanders forward John Tavares (91) celebrates his game winning overtime goal with his teammates against the Carolina Hurricanes at PNC Arena. The Islanders defeated the Hurricanes 3-2 in overtime. Mandatory Credit: James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports (James Guillory)

Andy Graziano, SNY.TV Twitter

The Islanders finished the 2016-17 season on a six-game winning streak, which included wins over four teams that did not advance to the Stanley Cup playoffs. In the end, it wasn't enough to continue their modest two-season playoff streak.

An ugly first quarter, marked by questionable defensive coverage, poor transition play, a powerless play and questionable management decisions will have them watching 16 teams compete for the ultimate prize from their living rooms. The fact that their 94 points are just two shy of the NHL record for most while missing the postseason (2014-15 Bruins had 96, 2006-07 Avalanche and 2010-11 Stars had 95) is no consolation, especially to the captain.

"Overall, as a team, it's disappointing, not making the playoffs," John Tavares said. "There are so many games to look back on, the opportunities we let slip away, and that's definitely frustrating. In a sense, it's a step back. What did we have, 94 points? So, three wins off last year. But, it's such a fine line. We need to step back, reflect and prepare to get where we need to be."

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 (Charles LeClaire/USA Today Sports Images)
(Charles LeClaire/USA Today Sports Images)

The Islanders cleaned out their lockers and had their exit interviews on Monday.

Eliminated from playoff contention Saturday, the Isles wrapped up the 2016-17 campaign with a 4-2 win over the Senators on Sunday.

They finished 41-29-12 (94 points), one point behind the Maple Leafs, who snagged the second and final Wild Card spot in the Eastern Conference. 

Tags: Cal Clutterbuck, Jason Chimera, John Tavares, Nikolay Kulemin, Travis Hamonic
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New York Islanders left wing Nikolay Kulemin celebrates his goal with teammates against the Winnipeg Jets during the first period at MTS Centre. (Bruce Fedyck)
New York Islanders left wing Nikolay Kulemin celebrates his goal with teammates against the Winnipeg Jets during the first period at MTS Centre. (Bruce Fedyck)

The Islanders missed the playoffs by one point, but could their 2016-2017 failure lead to bigger things in the future?

"That's the margin for error these days," Josh Bailey said. "There's so much parity now, all it takes is that one point. You sometimes don't think of it at the time necessarily, but those are the ones that get you in or keep you out."

"We're going home and we're packing up," Anders Lee, who scored his 34th goal of the season in Sunday's season finale, added. "Our season is over without a chance to continue. It's a bitter feeling."

Though the disappointment stings, interim coach Doug Weight said he believes that this near-miss doesn't change the positive path the organization is on.

Tags: Anders Lee, Josh Bailey
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 (Brad Penner)
(Brad Penner)

Doug Weight is still unsure whether he wants a career in coaching, but it sure looks like he's the perfect fit for this Islanders club.

The Isles went 24-12-4 during Weight's interim tenure, and the former NHL All-Star seemed to have earned the respect of the locker room over that stretch.

"His communication and his leadership were followed. The guys want to play for him," Anders Lee said of the coach. "Dougie came in and really changed the mindset of the team. He's got a bright future in coaching. If he wants to do it, he'll be successful."

Tags: Anders Lee, Andrew Ladd
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New York Islanders goalie Thomas Greiss defends the goal against Ottawa Senators center Christopher DiDomenico in the first period at Barclays Center. (Nicole Sweet/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Islanders goalie Thomas Greiss defends the goal against Ottawa Senators center Christopher DiDomenico in the first period at Barclays Center. (Nicole Sweet/USA TODAY Sports)

The New York Islanders beat the Ottawa Senators 4-2 on Sunday at Barclays Center in their season finale. >> Read more


First period:

  • 3:23 NYI Andrew Ladd; Assists: Alan Quine, Johnny Boychuk

Second period:

  • 8:17 NYI Anders Lee; Assists: Josh Bailey, Brock Nelson
  • 13:52 NYI Brock Nelson; Assists: Adam Pelech, Scott Mayfield
  • 18:54 OTT Bobby Ryan; Assist: Ryan Dzingel

Third period:

  • 2:34 OTT Jean-Gabriel Pageau; Assists: Alexandre Burrows, Chris Neil
  • 18:52 NYI Jason Chimera (ENG); Assists: Nelson, Leddy
Tags: Alain Quine, Anders Lee, Andrew Ladd, Brock Nelson, Jason Chimera, Johnny Boychuk, Nick Leddy, Ottawa Senators
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New York Islanders left wing Anders Lee with the puck as Buffalo Sabres center Jack Eichel pursues during the first period at KeyBank Center. (Kevin Hoffman/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Islanders left wing Anders Lee with the puck as Buffalo Sabres center Jack Eichel pursues during the first period at KeyBank Center. (Kevin Hoffman/USA TODAY Sports)

The Islanders briefly maintained their playoff chances with a win over the Devils on Saturday, but were later eliminated when the Maple Leafs defeated the Penguins and clinched the final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference. 

The Islanders will miss the postseason for the first time since the 2013-14 season.

The Islanders will wrap up their season on Sunday when they will host the Ottawa Senators at The Barclays Center.

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New York Islanders forward Andrew Ladd (16) celebrates his second period goal with teammates forward Anders Lee (27) and forward Josh Bailey (12) against the Carolina Hurricanes at PNC Arena. (James Guillory)
New York Islanders forward Andrew Ladd (16) celebrates his second period goal with teammates forward Anders Lee (27) and forward Josh Bailey (12) against the Carolina Hurricanes at PNC Arena. (James Guillory)

Anders Lee scored two goals and Jaroslav Halak saved 37 shots as the Islanders beat the Devils on Saturday at the Prudential Center. >> Read more


First period

No goals

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New York Islanders right wing Cal Clutterbuck (15) and New Jersey Devils center Adam Henrique (14) battle for the puck during the second period at Prudential Center. (Ed Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports)
New York Islanders right wing Cal Clutterbuck (15) and New Jersey Devils center Adam Henrique (14) battle for the puck during the second period at Prudential Center. (Ed Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports)

The Islanders and Devils play each other for the final time this season at 6 p.m. at the Prudential Center. 

According to STATS: 

  • The Islanders beat the Hurricanes, 3-0, at PNC Arena on Thursday night, keeping their slim postseason hopes alive in the process. New York has won four straight games -- its longest win streak of the 2016-17 campaign.
  • New Jersey lost, 7-4, to Pittsburgh at Prudential Center on Thursday night, dropping to 1-5-2 in the last eight games overall. The seven goals scored by the Pens were the most allowed by the Devils in any game this season.
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New York Islanders left wing Andrew Ladd (16) receives congratulations from teammates after scoring a goal in the first period against the Detroit Red Wings at Joe Louis Arena. (Rick Osentoski)
New York Islanders left wing Andrew Ladd (16) receives congratulations from teammates after scoring a goal in the first period against the Detroit Red Wings at Joe Louis Arena. (Rick Osentoski)

In what has been a common second half occurrence, Andrew Ladd found the back of the net again on Thursday to help the Islanders walk out of Carolina with two huge points.

With the Islanders already leading 2-0 and New York on the power play to start the second period, Ladd took a pass from Josh Bailey, ripped a wrister, and beat Eddie Lack for his 22nd goal of the season.

"We tried to stick with it, especially losing the personnel that we've lost," Ladd told reporters after the game. "We had guys step in and I think we've simplified our game a little bit."

Tags: Andrew Ladd, John Tavares, Josh Bailey
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New York Islanders forward Andrew Ladd (16) celebrates his second period goal with teammates forward Anders Lee (27) and forward Josh Bailey (12) against the Carolina Hurricanes at PNC Arena. (James Guillory)
New York Islanders forward Andrew Ladd (16) celebrates his second period goal with teammates forward Anders Lee (27) and forward Josh Bailey (12) against the Carolina Hurricanes at PNC Arena. (James Guillory)

The Islanders need wins in their final two games and some help to reach their third straight postseason.

To qualify for the final Wild Card spot, the Islanders need all four points in their final two games, and need the Maple Leafs to get no more than one point over the course of their last two. The Islanders visit New Jersey on Saturday and host the Senators on Sunday. Toronto will host the Penguins on Saturday and the Blue Jackets on Sunday.

"I think it's a credit to the guys in the locker room," Anders Lee said of the Isles' run to the final spot. "We are a resilient group and we've fought out of a lot of stuff this year and we're not going to go down easy."

Tags: Anders Lee
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Apr 6, 2017; Raleigh, NC, USA; New York Islanders defensemen Nick Leddy (2) and New York Islanders goalie Jaroslav Halak (41) celebrate after the victory against the Carolina Hurricanes at PNC Arena. The New York Islanders defeated the Carolina Hurricanes 3-0. Mandatory Credit: James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports (James Guillory)
Apr 6, 2017; Raleigh, NC, USA; New York Islanders defensemen Nick Leddy (2) and New York Islanders goalie Jaroslav Halak (41) celebrate after the victory against the Carolina Hurricanes at PNC Arena. The New York Islanders defeated the Carolina Hurricanes 3-0. Mandatory Credit: James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports (James Guillory)

Jaroslav Halak had 29 saves to lead the Islanders in a 3-0 shutout victory over the Carolina Hurricanes on Thursday night at PNC Arena. >> Read more


First Period

1:27 NYI Brock Nelson

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Brian Compton and Mike Carver discuss John Tavares' hamstring injury, Jaroslav Halak's resurgence, and the team's knack for coming up small in certain games. Later, the TV voice of the Isles, Brendan Burke, calls into the show to give his take on Josh Ho-Sang, the goaltending drama, and the future of Doug Weight.

Click below to listen!

Tags: Jaroslav Halak, John Tavares
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 (Kim Klement)
(Kim Klement)

Islanders prospect Devon Toews of the Bridgeport Sound Tigers has been named to the 2016-17 AHL All-Rookie Team, it was announced Thursday.

Toews, a defenseman who has played in 71 games this season, leads all AHL rookies with 37 assists. 

He was selected by the Islanders in the fourth round of the 2014 NHL Entry Draft.

Tags: Nick Leddy
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 (AP)
(AP)

BUFFALO, N.Y. (AP) Matt Moulson wants hospitalized Buffalo Sabres teammate Kyle Okposo to know he has the team's support.

"You're family here," Moulson said after the Sabres closed their home schedule with a 2-1 win over the Montreal Canadiens on Wednesday night. "And no matter what type of injury or what you have, you always feel for them and their family and giving them support."

Okposo has spent the past three days in a Buffalo hospital undergoing a battery of tests to determine an undisclosed illness that has sidelined him for more than a week.

Tags: Kyle Okposo
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New York Islanders goalie Jaroslav Halak (41) makes a save against the Pittsburgh Penguins in overtime at the PPG PAINTS Arena. (Charles LeClaire)
New York Islanders goalie Jaroslav Halak (41) makes a save against the Pittsburgh Penguins in overtime at the PPG PAINTS Arena. (Charles LeClaire)

Jaroslav Halak has been red hot since rejoining the Islanders for the stretch run.

Halak made 22 of 23 saves in the Isles' overtime win, his fourth victory since March 24.

"Obviously, I'm happy that I'm playing right now," Halak told reporters after the game.

Halak even got on the score sheet, as he assisted on Thomas Hickey's game winner.  

Tags: Jaroslav Halak, Thomas Greiss
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New York Islanders center Brock Nelson (29) after scoring a goal during the third period against the Nashville Predators at Bridgestone Arena. (Christopher Hanewinckel)
New York Islanders center Brock Nelson (29) after scoring a goal during the third period against the Nashville Predators at Bridgestone Arena. (Christopher Hanewinckel)

Brock Nelson broke out of a cold streak and scored a clutch third period goal in the Islanders' 2-1 overtime victory in Nashville.

A minute-and-a-half into the third period, with New York trailing 1-0, Nelson ripped a wrist shot past Pekka Rinne for his18th goal of the season.

For Nelson, the goal was his first since March 24, a stretch of five games without a goal, and just his second in his last 11 games.

Tags: Anders Lee, Brock Nelson, Ryan Strome
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Apr 1, 2017; Nashville, TN, USA; New York Islanders goalie Jaroslav Halak (41) makes a save during the first period against the Nashville Predators at Bridgestone Arena. The Predators won 3-0.  (Christopher Hanewinckel (USA Today))
Apr 1, 2017; Nashville, TN, USA; New York Islanders goalie Jaroslav Halak (41) makes a save during the first period against the Nashville Predators at Bridgestone Arena. The Predators won 3-0. (Christopher Hanewinckel (USA Today))

Recap

Thomas Hickey scored 1:25 into overtime, and the New York Islanders beat the Nashville Predators 2-1 Tuesday night to preserve their thin playoff hopes for at least another game.

Brock Nelson also scored for the Islanders, and goalie Jaroslav Halak made 22 saves as they won their third straight in chasing the Eastern Conference's second wild card.

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New York Islanders left wing Anders Lee with the puck as Buffalo Sabres center Jack Eichel pursues during the first period at KeyBank Center. (Kevin Hoffman/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Islanders left wing Anders Lee with the puck as Buffalo Sabres center Jack Eichel pursues during the first period at KeyBank Center. (Kevin Hoffman/USA TODAY Sports)

Anders Lee scored twice in the third period to lead the New York Islanders to a 4-2 win over the Buffalo Sabres on Sunday at KeyBank Center. >> Read more


First period:

  • 9:31 NYI Cal Clutterbuck; Assist: Nick Leddy

Second period:

  • 10:08 BUF Evander Kane; Assist: C.J. Smith
  • 11:04 NYI Joshua Ho-Sang; Assist: Dennis Seidenberg

Third period:

  • 5:17 BUF Zemgus Girgensons; Assists: Matt Moulson, William Carrier
  • 9:19 NYI Anders Lee
  • 14:33 NYI Lee
Tags: Anders Lee, Cal Clutterbuck, Nick Leddy, Buffalo Sabres
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New York Islanders head coach Doug Weight on his bench against the Calgary Flames during the third period at Scotiabank Saddledome. (Sergei Belski)
New York Islanders head coach Doug Weight on his bench against the Calgary Flames during the third period at Scotiabank Saddledome. (Sergei Belski)

Andy Graziano, SNY.TV: 

Barring a miraculous event of biblical proportions, this will be the final week of the New York Islanders 2016-17 season.

They currently trail the Boston Bruins by six points with a game in hand but only five games remaining. Since it's now impossible to catch the Bs in regulation wins (40-34), that deficit is seven points. That would mean picking up 70% of remaining possible points with the Bruins picking up zero points in their final four games.

I don't need to tell you that's very….very….very unlikely. 

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The Islanders' Thomas Hickey, left, and center John Tavares show their frustration during Thursday's home loss to Winnipeg. (Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports)
The Islanders' Thomas Hickey, left, and center John Tavares show their frustration during Thursday's home loss to Winnipeg. (Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports)

In what has been a difficult season and with time running out, the New York Islanders will have to get around a roadblock at the worst possible time in a last-ditch effort to secure a playoff spot.

With leading scorer and captain John Tavares out for the foreseeable future, the Islanders open a four-game road trip Sunday against the Buffalo Sabres.

While still mathematically in the mix, the Islanders' chances of a third straight playoff appearance are slim. New York (36-29-12) and Carolina trail Boston by six points for the eighth and final Eastern Conference playoff spot. The Islanders and Hurricanes each have five games remaining and the Bruins have four.

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 (Brad Penner)
(Brad Penner)

The Islanders said Saturday captain John Tavares is "week-to-week" with a lower-body injury sustained late in the Islanders' 2-1 victory over the Devils Friday.

That likely means he is out for the remainder of the regular season as the Islanders try to keep their playoff hopes alive. The Islanders are four points behind the Bruins for the final Eastern Conference playoff berth with five games to play.

Tavares, who has 66 points this season, had to be helped off the ice with 3:14 remaining iafter getting tangled up with the back of the net and a Devils player. Tavares was clutching the back of his left leg in the hamstring area.

Tags: John Tavares
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 (Brad Penner (USA Today))
(Brad Penner (USA Today))

Recap

Anders Lee and Anthony Beauvillier scored to help the New York Islanders preserve their slim playoff chances with a 2-1 victory over the New Jersey Devils on Friday night.

Jaroslav Halak stopped 26 shots as the Islanders pulled four points behind Boston for the second wild card in the Eastern Conference. New York won at home for the first time since beating the Devils here on Feb. 19, going 0-4-1 at Barclays Center in between.

Tags: Anders Lee
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 (John E. Sokolowski (USA Today))
(John E. Sokolowski (USA Today))

Reports have started to indicate that John Tavares wants to have his mind made up about what to do about his next contract this summer. Have the Islanders given him enough reason to stay? SNY's Brian Erni and Andy Graziano discuss...

Brian Erni, SNY.TV Twitter | Archive Posts

Alright, Andy. Lots of John Tavares murmuring of late, with the Canadian media luminaries (like Elliotte Friedman and Darren Dreger) alluding to the idea that JT wants to have his mind made up on a course of action by June. Where do you think things stand at this very moment?

Tags: John Tavares, Andy Graziano, Brian Erni
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 (Charles LeClaire)
(Charles LeClaire)

Islanders defenseman Travis Hamonic did not return to the game against the Flyers after suffering an upper-body injury in the first period. The 26-year-old dropped the gloves and fought Philadelphia's Dale Weise in the opening period.

Hamonic was seen following the Islanders' loss with a cast on his left hand.

The 26-year-old has tallied three goals and 11 assists in 48 games this season.

Tags: Travis Hamonic
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