The Islanders are also looking to put the woes of last season behind them. The Islanders were thought to be moving in the right direction going into last season after an appearance in the playoffs the year before, but they spiraled to a bottom five finish. The players know that a rough year the prior season and the expectations for them to properly end their tenure at the Coliseum means they have to produce.
"I think there's pressure and high expectation for us to be competitive and obviously make the playoffs," captain John Tavares said Wednesday. "I think it's no secrete for us, and I do think we take it upon ourselves to finish the season the right way at the Coliseum. It's a lot of history there. The team grew up there, been there for as long as they've been around. So, it's a big connection for a lot of people and we know that's going to change a lot next year.
"For sure it's an important year and we had a very poor year at home last year, so it's something we need to rebound on and have to be good at to be a competitive team. And make the playoffs."
The Islanders will have a healthy John Tavares on the roster again. During his media tour at the NHL offices, Tavares said he was all set for the 2014-15 season. It was something he reiterated to reporters after Wednesday's informal skate on Long Island.
"I would have been playing in the first week of the playoffs and I was feeling really good" he said.
Tavares isn't the only one who recognizes the pressure the Islanders face this upcoming season.
Frans Nielsen also understands the team cannot have another disappointing season like they had last year. Nielsen had a career year in 2013-14 scoring 25 goals and recording 33 assists, but he knows that his squad collectively needs to be better.
"I think we're all really, really disappointed about last year and I think we know we can be better," Nielsen explained. "I think just talking to the guys over the summer I think everybody is really excited. I think we put a lot of pressure on ourselves right now. We know that Garth [Snow] and the management did their job this summer, so now we gotta go out there and deliver."
The pressure will be on once training camp opens Sept. 19. With all the new additions during the offseason and younger players pushing for roster spots, the Islanders are situated to have a competitive camp this year.
Nielsen believes that it is a good thing for camp to be competitive, but also believes that the competitiveness will extend into the season.
"[It] makes sure everybody shows up everyday and competes," he said. "I don't even think it's just in camp for spots it's like all year. There's going to be so many good players on this roster here. There's going to be a lot of good players down in Bridgeport and if you have a tough stretch they're going to make trades right away.
So it's not just camp that's going to be a lot of competition, it's going to be all year with all the forwards we got now."