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The New York Islanders might be constructing a brand new area subsequent to Belmont Park Racetrack. Whereas the precise particulars of when the Islanders will transfer into the brand new area have but to be introduced, the earliest they might start taking part in there could be the 2019-20 season. In order that leaves the Islanders taking part in in Brooklyn to complete out this season and possibly subsequent season as nicely. Fairly a couple of followers would really like the group to return to Nassau Coliseum earlier than transferring to the brand new area however that appears unlikely. Though it will be nostalgic, and the constructing would doubtless promote out most sport nights, its capability for hockey is just round 12,000, nicely brief of what’s thought-about normal for an NHL group.
The larger query is how does John Tavares really feel in regards to the new area? He might be a free agent after the season and could be in extraordinarily excessive demand by any group that may afford to pay him $10 million per season over a long-term contract, probably 10 years. The Islanders can definitely afford to pay him, however there has all the time been some query about how a lot he needs play right here. Tavares has been unwilling to signal a contract extension and most exterior observers assume it was as a result of he wished to know the place the group would find yourself taking part in. That query has now been answered. If he actually does like the place this group is headed and the thought of taking part in in a brand new area, then the Islanders’ possibilities of re-signing him simply went up drastically, and it will be an upset if he had been to go away through free company. If he isn’t , then groups just like the Canadiens, Pink Wings, Rangers, and Maple Leafs might be licking their lips to get a crack at signing Tavares when free company hits this summer time.
Would Tavares keep if there isn’t a enchancment of their goaltending? Within the NFL, the play of the group’s quarterback tremendously determines how good or unhealthy the group is. Nicely, within the NHL, it is all in regards to the goaltending and at this level, the Islanders haven’t got a dependable backstop. Jaroslav Halak is at the moment sporting a 2.97 GAA and .905 save share. These numbers are unhealthy however the numbers for Thomas Greiss are even worse, three.83 and .883, but one way or the other Greiss has been allowed to begin the final three video games (13 objectives allowed). Keep in mind after we had been children and performed hockey? Typically we did not have sufficient gamers for a goaltender or did not have the gear, so we’d simply play with a rubbish can in internet. Nicely, that’s just about what the Islanders have now. They might be higher off with six skaters and a rubbish can or site visitors cone in internet. You possibly can’t begin both of these gamers in your Fantasy group.
In non-Islander information, Auston Matthews (higher physique) will re-join the Leafs on their upcoming five-game highway journey. Matthews has been out of the lineup since Dec. 9, which most consider is due to a concussion. With Matthews becoming a member of the group, it is doubtless that he’ll play in some unspecified time in the future throughout this journey however precisely when that might be cannot be locked down. What we do now, nonetheless, is that it needs to be sooner fairly than later. Matthews is likely one of the finest snipers within the league, and he might be welcomed again by his Fantasy house owners. Maybe they are going to get an early Christmas current.
Shea Weber of the Canadiens was despatched away from the group as he offers with a foot damage. Weber missed six video games on the finish of November because of the ailment and had been attempting to play by means of the damage ever since. That call appears sick suggested now, as Weber might be saved out of the lineup till the damage heals, and nobody is aware of when that is perhaps. The Canadiens want Weber again within the lineup as quickly as potential. This group would not have the depth to outlive the lack of anybody who might help put the puck within the internet.
The Penguins introduced Tuesday that Justin Schultz (decrease physique) will not be returning to the lineup as quickly because the group had hoped. This appears to point that Schultz might have suffered a setback or simply is not therapeutic as rapidly because the participant and group had hoped. The Pens are struggling to win video games and are falling within the standings. When you’re searching for a group to make an enormous splash earlier than the Feb. 26 commerce deadline, look no additional than the Penguins. They’ll make a transfer, it is only a matter of when. Would not Evander Kane look good in a Pittsburgh uniform?