The New York Islanders have released their list of mini camp invitees, a nice reminder of how close the season is.
One of the things every franchise in sports can’t get enough of is prospects. Everyone loves prospects. And the New York Islanders are no different.
Friday, the team announced the 50 players who will participate in its annual mini camp—29 forwards, 16 defensemen and five goalies. The gathering of prospects includes plenty of on-ice and off-ice workouts to help the coaches and scouts evaluate the progress of all in attendance.
The weeklong event concludes with the always popular Blue and White Scrimmage at Barclays Center on Thursday, Sept. 7.
While most of the players invited aren’t known to most fans, a handful of familiar names will be in attendance.
Ho-Sang impressed in limited time with the team last season, putting up 10 points (four goals, six assists) in 21 games. His explosive offensive ability has guaranteed him a spot on the 2017-18 roster.
“Beau,” as he is known around the locker room and amongst fans, really proved he can be a high-quality NHL player last season, scoring nine goals and dishing out 15 assists in 66 games. A strong showing in last year’s mini camp led to him making his NHL debut. Like Ho-Sang, he’s assured of a spot on the big club.
Widely considered the Islanders top prospect, Barzal struggled in his first few NHL games last season and was ultimately sent back to Seattle in the WHL. He showed everyone why he’s so highly thought of upon his return to the Pacific Northwest, scoring 79 points in just 41 games.
There’s been some speculation that he could slide into the currently vacant center spot on the Isles’ second line; how he fares in this mini camp, training camp and the preseason will be the ultimate decider.
The fifth overall pick in the 2014 NHL Draft continues to struggle to find his footing. Dal Colle recorded only 15 goals in his first full season with the AHL’s Bridgeport SoundTigers and his stock continues to fall. He needs a strong showing in camp to prove he was worth such a high selection.
One of the teams most highly touted goalie prospects finally signed an entry level contract this offseason. Although he will play the year in his native Sweden, Soderstrom will have plenty of chances to prove his worth.