With Bill Guerin shipped to the Pittsburgh Penguins for a glorified bag of pucks, one of the last speedbumps to Gordon's overspeed system has been removed. This coupled with Brendan Witt's change of heart since his speaking out has made it clear to who runs Bartertown on LI.
While Bill Guerin was not a purposeful impeding force, he was an old school player forced to deal with a new school and philosophy that needed commitment even when suffering loss after loss.
When the New York Isles faltered in December, belief from vets wavered. Opinions flew. The team sunk into a confused malaise and dug themselves deeper. The kids followed the vets own doom and gloom, and most of December was a public wreckage.
The Isles, since, shed themselves of nonbelievers or just ill-fits (Comrie). They sit poised to see if they can resign Hilbert and Weight, two who thrived in that system.
Of course, as the Isles win these last month of games, those fans who look at this coming draft placement hearts skip a beat or two. For is the Isles keep winning they will play themselves right out of the top two slots where they were to be assured a franchise-type of blue chip pick in Hedman or Tavares.
These two are the kind of players that can make a fundamental difference on two levels, on-ice and in getting fans into seats.
Of course, since next season has Scott Gordon
's and perhaps also Garth Snow's ass on the line, they might care less about that pick and more about longterm development and improvement, draft be damned.
Therefore, it is likely they will want those wins and something to build on as a group. This takes priority than any draft pick, which might come to many a fan's horror.
While other teams freefall into oblivion and a draft position, the Isles are removing themselves from a Degobah-like swamp based on belief and a system that now only has yes-kids.
Lights Out at Newsday
There is much to be concerned on Isles County. Charles Wang game of chicken versus a reticent decision and leadership-addled Town of Hempstead has shaken up the faithful.
Meanwhile, Newsday seems to tap the vein with aplomb and glee, leading to a sloppy sensationalistic piece in Sunday's paper that is just a rehash of issues and arguments than any education or information.
"The development's new housing would result in an enrollment increase of 333 children for the Uniondale Union Free School District."
First of all, this is the biggest pile of rubbish. The housing is high $$, and the Uniondale school system is far from an attractive destination. It is a rough and tumble school system, despite strong attempts to equalize it, rife with gang problems.
Add to this, chances that families that would come into that housing is low and as to when...something even more fuzzy.
Furthermore, the chances of high-cost homes leading to families to send their kids to a less than stellar school system? Nil. Zero. Nada. Not a chance.
The superintendent, Dr. Lloyd, is playing a fiddle that the schools are at capacity in order to get something for nothing. It is politic prostrating, nothing more. He's clanging a tin cup for his school system who would not be affected by the project at all, except maybe, within the next 20 years, to create an upward swing. By then, Dr. Lloyd will be long gone.
Other issues cited by Newsday are just as fuzzy and meant to be scintillating and sensational than much else. They look for alternative if not debatable points to just make empty arguments.
It is a poorly done piece and makes a mockery of journalism standards that Newsday has sought to provide for years and years. Is the next step to sell Newsday next to The Globe and National Enquirer.
Basically, the more you see sports chest-thumper, Anthony Rieber, in the news pages, the more you might as well sell Newsday as a rag than any source of news.
Far too little information and much too much drama for drama's sake. Shame on Newsday.
So What Is the Real Deal?
As I broke here, Charles Wang has met with at LEAST one prospective interest group or owner groups on either the NHL/Bettman's behest or on their own to assure that all options have been explored. That said, the one I know of is NY based, not KC rumored as the press has tried to run with.
KC, despite attempts otherwise, is not a good fit for the Isles and might not even have the league support for the Isles to move there even if it was. Add a legal wrangling, despite any purported loophole to the contract with SMG that is up in 2015, and you have a good idea on how messy it could get.
It is my belief that is IF the Lighthouse Project fails, which would be a monumental catastrophe for sport fans and long islanders, the league would pressure for a sale to a NY-based group. Though the only way it fails is that the poltical battle of attrition becomes far more public and nasty, which would decimate an already weak and willy-nilly Republican led Town of Hempstead and deep-six any long term political desires.
Back To The Ice
In the meantime, the Isles have gotten younger on-ice and have had Bridgeport call-ups excel. This proof positive that the Gordo system which has been installed on the AHL level works and allows for an easier transition to the NHL game.
So, though I might hope for them to lose a couple of oh-so-close heartbreakers, a franchise top-flight dman or forward would really make that future oh-so-brighter. If the Isles can win one thing this season, let it be the top draft position WHILE succeeding in having players, coach and GM see that overspeed does in fact work and be built on.