While it’s uncertain what the effect of the KHL’s financial struggles will be, it’s more likely than not that it will be positive for the New York Islanders.
Could the KHL’s financial troubles result in more players coming overseas?
That’s the prevailing theory at the moment, especially in the wake of the recent announcement that the league will be lowering the salary cap and losing two of its 29 teams this offseason.
Citing “unprecedented” wage delays and increasing debts, KHL president Dmitry Chernyshenko promised the league “won’t stand for this.” Widely renowned as the world’s strongest confederation outside the NHL, Russia’s preeminent league is comprised of both prospects and veterans.
What will the ramifications be for the Isles? It’s mixed, to say the least. The Isles have always had trouble luring guys to Brooklyn, mostly because it’s a tough sell: KHL players typically make more money, enjoy more personal fanfare and feel more comfortable because frankly, it’s their home.
However, if the KHL can’t promise the big money players are accustomed to (although it’s unknown what Ilya Sorokin’s contract is, he competes for one of the league’s wealthiest teams), it’s possible that guys will come overseas.
For the Isles, who as previously mentioned have historically struggled with KHL prospects, this could be a blessing in disguise. There’s an actual list teeming with draft picks who haven’t come over, or have, when they were no longer considered prospects.
While it’s uncertain what the effect will be, it’s more likely than not that it will be positive for the Islanders.
Sources tell Elite Sports New York’s Peter Schwartz that the Islanders will be playing a preseason game at the new Nassau Coliseum. The news comes with the caveat that no, this doesn’t mean that the Isles are returning to Long Island. Rather, it’s more likely than not that it’s an ingenious business decision by the Islanders ownership group.
A source tells me that the #isles will play a preseason game at the new Nassau Coliseum.
— Peter Schwartz (@pschwartzcbsfan) May 25, 2017
Bryan Saur profiled Casey Cizikas in our latest season review article. Says Saur, “He may not be the flashiest player in the league and fans of teams across the country may not even know who the guy is, but to New York Islander fans, Casey Cizikas is one of the most popular Islanders on the ice with his gritty play.”
Alright, so in Scott Cullen’s “Off-Season Game Plan,” the writer forecasted the Isles’ offseason. He believes they’ll land Teddy Purcell from Los Angeles, Gabriel Dumont from Tampa and Michael Hutchinson from Winnipeg, but honestly, none of these guys are particularly exciting.