With so many questions about the Islanders roster, and an offense that has struggled over the past couple of games against teams that aren’t exactly defensive stalwarts, much of Islander fandom was waiting to see what General Manager Garth Snow could, or would, do at the deadline.
Would the Travis Hamonic trade finally happen? Would the Islanders look for a return for Kyle Okposo and/or FRans Neilsen before they hit UFA status at the end of the season. Would Snow deal away one of his prospects for a player who could get the Isles over the hump and win a playoff series?
Instead, we got the addition of Shane Prince and Marc-Andre Clichy.
Yeah, not exactly blockbuster moves.
I’m not surprised by the deals. The Isles gave up little to get a couple of extra forwards that might offer some help, or at least some injury insurance during the playoffs.
I am surprised that was it. It seems clear that this team isn’t any better than last years, and I don’t see this team getting out of the first round. In fact, you could argue that they are one slump away from not making the playoffs at all, but I think they will, albeit they may end up with a wildcard spot if the Pens keep playing better. That’ll make 10 years of GM Snow, and getting close to 25 years overall, without a playoff series win, just as new owners are taking over management of the team. I really figured Garth would make a move toward playoff success this season in the interest of saving his job.
We’ll see what happens in the playoffs. The Isles are capable of winning a series and making all of this moot, but it would take just the right matchup and a little bit of luck, frankly. Stranger things have happened, but if they don’t, I suspect that new owners won’t be the only change in the offseason. The Garth Snow and Jack Capuano show has gotten the Isles this far in the rebuild, but it might not be the leadership team to get them to the next step. The bet on the team improving from within this season doesn’t appear to be panning out, and the lack of other significant moves might be the end.