Tuesday, August 26, 2008

No Joshin': Bailey could be signed before camp

After finding a way to stay in the press for most of the summer, the Islanders should have little in the way of hard news before the team leaves for training camp in Moncton on Sept. 19. But there could be one last major item on Garth Snow’s agenda.

It would make sense on a lot of levels for the GM to close a deal with first round pick Josh Bailey prior to the opening of camp. Draft picks do not apply to the same rule as our children. In the NHL, your draft picks are not all loved equally. Signing Bailey before he hits the ice in Moncton would send a message, especially to Bailey himself.

There’s a lot riding on Bailey, whom the team feels even better about after the kid spent a long time on and off the ice on Long Island post-draft. To a lot of eyes, the Islanders moved a few mountains (and grabbed a few extra picks) in taking the skilled two-way center with exceptional leadership qualities (darn, can’t get that PR stuff outta my head!) It’s only natural they would attempt to show the same respect towards Bailey as other teams have lavished on their recent prized first picks. Tampa Bay has signed Steven Stamkos, LA Drew Doughty. Continuing in neat order, Atlanta is ready to speak with No. 3 pick Zack Bogosian.

Of course, the Islanders do not have to wait for all of the first eight picks to sign before they ink their boy. For a deal with Bailey, the salary cap does most of the work. It mostly comes down to bonuses. There is also no downside to the gesture of committing early to their prized prospect. If he does not make the team – I don’t think you can rule that out with 100% certainty, at least for October – the three-year contract simply begins when Bailey becomes a regular pro.

The Islanders have done this before with first rounders. Don’t be surprised to hear about a Bailey deal sometime between Labor Day and the start of training camp.


7th Woman said...

I'm all for this. My only question would be, does Gordon have any say in it? I certainly understand this move, but I'm just wondering. (because there really isn't much going on in the hockey universe... and I really don't care where the hell Sundin goes.)

Snowman39 said...

I'm all for giving him a contract before the season starts, but I'm not sure I wanna see him make the team this season no matter what he does in camp. I don't see any possible way they could give him the icetime he needs to develop. Anyway, nice read Chris. Keep up the good work!

mtrico said...

I agree Chris, this makes sense. By the way, thanks for continuing the blog, I really enjoy reading it.

Strummer's Army said...

Hi, Botta:
I hope they do sign Bailey. I am excited about that guy and many of our young prospects. I believe the organization is headed in the right direction FINALLY!

However, one thing I and many Isles fans are pissed about and shocked that Garth Snow doesn't want to address is toughness. It was really hard to see the Isles get pushed around the past couple years. How many times did guys go after Comeu last year and no one did a damn thing about it? Chris Simon never was doing his job last year even when playing. Witt and Sutton are not top heavy weights even though they have the size. You can't expect Guerin to go up against Orr and the rest of the muscle the Rangers spent the off-season acquiring. Then let us not forget Philly loading up with even more fighters, Pitt importing Goddy and even NJ has more tough guys.

It is pathetic watching the Islanders be pushed around. Everyone one knows a tigher defense would help Ricky but so would not having guys know they can run the Islander's goalies anytime they want without retrubution. Just gonna see Martinek and Freddy Meyer standing around watching Rick rolling around in pain. Garth Snow's career ended this way.

Here is my plan dump guys like Andy Hilbert who SUCKS and give that spot to someone who can play and fight. Milan Lucic from Boston is one. Boogard is another. Then help the defense. Instead of having a very overrated and injury prone Radek "Let me stand around and watch you get three of four attempts from in close rather then put my body on you" Martinek go for the gold and try to get a Shea Weber type d-man, Brent Seabrook etc. Montreal may have to deal Komisarik this year because he is do for UFA. Then go get Kevin Bieksa from Van. He was on the market this summer. THat guy is a good d-man and an excellent fighter. 6'4" 218, ya that is what I am talking about, time to let him replace Martinek. Lastly, we need an upgrade at center. I'd love the Isles to get Ryan Getzlaf. He does it all but since I am sure Ana won't be trading him Ryan Kesler from Van was also being shopped this summer. He shoudl replace the inconsistent Comrie. He put up just as many points if not more last year plus he is a hell of a good fighter, has size, hits, is young to build with the core, great on defense. He also wasn't selected by their new GM. That is a much bigger/tougher/talented Isles team. Getting the Weber type d-man (big, tough, hitter, fighter, PP guys) improves the team in so many ways.

Comeu Kesler Okposo
Tambelleni Weight Guerin
Bergy Silly/Nielsen Hunter
Lucic Nielsen/Walter Sim/Park/Coll

Witt Weber/Seabrook/Komisarik
Campolli Bieksa
Streit Sutton


Isles fans just should not be forced to watch guys like Hilbert, Berard, Martinek and Meyer and have the PR spin put on us that these guys are underrated. I think when Garth Snow comes out and says that when healthy Martinek is their best d-man it is admitting you have a huge problem. It is like Lindsay Lohan saying "I drink too much". You need help!

Tim Meehan said...

i like this idea, period. sign the kid up, make him feel great, play him in juniors, bring him up for 9 games.

now the real question is -- sundin to the isles. could it actually happen?

give garth a call and let us know. plz.