Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Islanders Stat Predictions 2010/11

The 2010/11 NHL season is upon us.

Seing as how the 2010/11 season is upon us, it's time to start rolling out the predictions for our Islanders in the upcoming season.

I'll let it be no secret that I'm looking at this season enthusiastically. Year three of Snow's rebuild/youth movement/stalling-to-take-off-the-pressure-for-not-signing-legitimate-additions/whathaveyou is looking cautiously calculated, but most certainly allows for one to believe that the team can take yet another step after an 18 point improvement between the 2008/09 and 2009/10 seasons.

Let there also be no doubt that the additions of PA Parenteau, Zenon Kenopka, Mark Eaton, Milan Jurcina and James Wisniewski can be looked at as little more than marginal improvement over the losses of Park, Jackman, Bergenheim, Witt, Meyer and Sutton vis-à-vis the line-up going into last season. Nonetheless, at least Wisniewski, Kenopka and Eaton offer this team certain qualities that just were not part of the line-up last year. In addition, with the experience gathered by Matt Martin, Jesse Joensuu, Dustin Kohn and Dylan Reese last season as well as the NHL experience already possessed by AHL fill-ins Jon Sim and Andy Hilbert, this team is boasting of a depth that it hasn't had in years.

These players do not include the eigth defenseman and thirteen forwards who seem destined for Long Island to begin the season. They also do not take into account the outside role that young players Nino Niederreiter, Rhett Rakhshani, David Ullstrom, Travis Hamonic, and Mark Katic might have in winning over a spot on the team.

With this all in mind, here are my stat predictions for the 2010/11 season!

New York Islanders

41-33-6 for 88 points and spot 8 in the conference standings.

Dwayne Roloson
Synopsis: Was without a doubt one of the Islanders' most important players last season. It seemed as though any and every point we gained in the first half of the season came with him in net, and with him playing a good role in earning those points. Then came the 3-goalie phase and he seemed to immediately suffer from this break in his flow. At this point, the 41 year old is entering the season as the unabridged starter. May we hope he can continue his fairly solid play from last season. A playoff spot is not otherwise possible, right?
If things don't go his way: 16-24-5, 3.25 GAA, .890 SV%
If things go his way: 28-21-3, 2.85 GAA, .910 SV%
What I predict: 26-18-4, 2.98 GAA, .905 SV%

Rick Dipietro
Synopsis: Your guess is as good as mine. Don't see him regaining his pre-injuries all-star form, but one can hope!
If things don't go his way: 3-6-1, 3.50 GAA, .885 SV%
If things go his way: 32-20-5, 2.20 GAA, .930 SV%
What I predict: 14-12-2, 3.05 GAA, .910 SV%

Nathan Lawson
Synopsis: Kind of the guy who's just there. I don't expect much, but with a Dipietro around, he could very well be the back-up for the bulk of the season. His AHL numbers to date would indicate that he may of earned a shot. Hard to think he'd be anything more than a stop-gap, especially if both Dipietro and Roloson suffer injures.
If things don't go his way: 0-4-0, 3.85 GAA, .860 SV%
If things go his way: 10-7-5, 3.10 GAA, .915 SV%
What I predict: 1-3-0, 3.30 GAA, .897 SV%

Mikko Koskinen and Kevin Poulin:
One is likely to get a start at some point, unless Dipietro and Roloson are simply dominating.

1) Mark Streit
Synopsis: So how long is Mr. All Everything going to be out? What kind of an effect will his operated shoulder have on his shot? When he does come back, how long will it take for him to get up and running. Despite a somewhat off year last season, there's no doubt that much was asked of Streit and he played with a number of partners who he ultimately had to carry to a certain degree. That shouldn't be the case if and once he comes back
If things don't go his way: 1-5-6
If things go his way: 8-28-36
What I predict: 7-19-26

2) James Wisniewski
If things don't go his way: His role was to come in and help out Streit. Now he kind of needs to uhhhh replace him. Too much to ask of course, but Wisniewski seems like a guy who has a lot to prove. He'll never get a better. May his slapshot prove the Hammer of Thor we've not seen from a righty shot in quite some time.
If things don't go his way: 5-13-18
If things go his way: 15-25-40
What I predict: 8-31-39

3) Mark Eaton
Synopsis: I was never fond of him nor have I ever thought him to be anything special in any of the three zones. He did however play a nice role in Pittsburgh's cup run, but his positive attributes were surely just complimentary to being in a line-up with a number of ubertalented players. I personally don't think he's much better than Meyer IV, but I'll happily sit back and let him prove he is.
If things don't go his way: 0-4-4
If things go his way: 2-15-17
What I predict: 1-6-7

4) Jack Hillen
Synopsis: Made some real strides last year and looked like a decent and no longer overextended transitional Dman. Jack was even starting to look very comfortable before taking Ovechkin's shot to the face. His WC play wasn't bad, but also reflected what he must get better at: decision-making as he approaches and once he's in the opponent's zone. That's got to get better if he wants to make a career of it as a fluid and effective defenseman. His shot is nothing to write home about either. PP time could increase in Streit's absence
If things don't go his way: 1-11-12
If things go his way: 6-32-38
What I predict: 4-23-27

5) Andy MacDonald
Synopsis: Arrived on the scene in an unexpectedly fine fashion. Played very poised and intelligent. His shot isn't half bad and his passing surpasses, ahem, a number of his colleagues on the blueline. I know from a first hand witness that he more than surprised his own teammates with his play. Surprising was also his speed in cleaning up mistakes and getting back into the zone. Not a checker, not a roughian. Can he continue his cerebral play? Don't be surprised to see him eating up a number of those minutes expected to go to Streit.
If things don't go his way: 2-8-10
If things go his way: 6-26-32
What I predict: 6-18-24

6) Radek Martinek
Synopsis: Seems folks will just assume he'll do what he can until an injury comes. Even if a bit inevitable, let's hope he still gets in a good 60 games. Fact is, he's servicable and has a few grand, grand games a season. Decent puckmover; smart Dman. Been around as long as well, just about any Islander, eh? Will give his all as long as the body lets him.
If things don't go his way: 1-2-3
If things go his way: 5-16-21
What I predict: 2-7-9

7) Mike Mottau
Synopsis: Seeing as how this signing came RIGHT on the heels of Streit's injury, let there be no doubt that it was chiefly motivated by it. Like, no duh? The guy was a BC boy and had a very solid 4 year college career, with a monster sophomore season. That was long ago and it didn't look like he'd get past the AHL until Lou's club found use for him. Having been fairly solid in lower capacity, it'll be interesting to see if he can show himself to be better than Gervais and Jurcina, his chief competition at the moment.
If things don't go his way: 0-4-4
If things go his way: 5-15-20
What I predict: 1-8-9

8) Milan Jurcina
Synopsis: We're simply gonna have to see where this guy fits. In his favor is that he worked with Gordon in Providence and obviously the team wouldn't have signed him if Gordon had had any reservations, right? On the other hand he's been labelled a gentle giant who certainly isn't gonna be winning any skating awards. So as one of 8 Dmen, where does he fit in? What role can he assume? Does he block any shots?
If things don't go his way: 0-2-2
If things go his way: 3-12-15
What I predict: 3-4-7

9) Bruno Gervais
Synopsis: Looking like the odd man out going in, but sometimes that's JUST the motivation a guy needs. He looked horrible at times last season, but he does have a few attributes that allow him to stick around, and I'm not including his cooking talents or general all-round good guy reputation when it comes to community service, where he may be the best the Isles have to offer. Until he becomes consequent with his positioning in his own zone as well as getting the puck out of the zone when it should be oh so easy, he's getting closer to a top 6 job in Europe than the NHL.
If things don't go his way: 0-3-3
If things go his way: 4-20-24
What I predict: 0-4-4

Mark Katic
What I predict: 1-3-4
Travis Hamonic
What I predict: 2-1-3
Dustin Kohn
What I predict: 0-0-0
Dylan Reese
What I predict: 0-0-0

John Tavares
Synopsis: Considered to be our franchise player, it seems that many are already of the belief that he'll go much the way of a one Mr. Stamkos. For those who feel that, I ask "Where are the St. Louis, Lecavaliers, Downies and Malones on this team to feed him the puck?" Nonetheless, much indicates that young Tavares is ready to lead this team in the scoring department, uhhh, as he did last season. We should expect it and it should be an improvement upon his very decent 54 rookie points. Stamkosland is a great reach though.
If things don't go his way: 26-24-50
If things go his way: 35-42-77
What I predict: 33-38-71

Blake Comeau
Synopsis: Many will just sit back and wait for it to maybe happen, but I'm gonna predict that Blakey 'gets it' this season. I think he came into his true form to end last season and that he has that two-way, coast-to-coast swagger to go along with decent all-round offensive instincts. It'll pay off starting this season and with JT or RS as his center. Garth will feel justified in not having signed, say, a Frolov instead of just sticking with Comeau.
If things don't go his way: 14-18-32
If things go his way: 35-35-70
What I predict: 32-26-58

Josh Bailey
Synopsis: No doubt, Josh is the most difficult forward in the starting 12 to get a read on from a prediction standpoint. There are skills, but his first two seasons have been marred with inconsistency. His teammates seem to think he's got mucho talent and it looks like he'll begin the year on the LW side, where he arguably enjoyed his best production output to date.
If things don't go his way: 12-16-28
If things go his way: 23-36-59
What I predict: 18-28-46

Kyle Okposo
Synopsis: Surgery and three months on the IR. Big bummer. The team's number one right wing was surely counted on to be one of its top scorers and still needs him to be if there's to be any shot of making the playoffs. Still, as with Streit, he may have more gas in the tank when the games count more with the time off. I expect him to need a lotttt of time to find to his scoring, which often lingered last season.
If things don't go his way: 7-18-25
If things go his way: 21-33-54
What I predict: 18-26-44

Rob Schremp
Synopsis: It took him a while to acclimated and then to earn minutes. He slowly began to strut his stuff and to be honest, he maybe has the best offensive skills on the team, including Tavares. He's tricky, he holds and handles the puck well and once the confidence was there, he spent 10 games being our best offensive player. An injury rained on his coming out party. Now, however, he's coming into this season knowing that the coaches, management and players believe he can play a serious offensive role - and he seems ecstatic. Let's just hope the injuries don't ruin things for him - and us.
If things don't go his way: 5-13-18
If things go his way: 18-42-60
What I predict: 12-32-44

Matt Moulson
Synopsis: He convinced me last season. I enjoyed his overall game, his effort, his sweat and blood. He IS the best man on the team within 10 feet of the goal. He's got that sense of where to be, the so-called nose for the net. It's there. It'll stay. I'm sure the effort will continue, because he does not wanna be an AHLer again within a year's time. Despite this, he'll not be able to take the league by surprise and he'll not necessarily be getting top two line minutes. His importance will remain. His scoring will inadvertantly drop.
If things don't go his way: 14-8-22
If things go his way: 40-28-68
What I predict: 21-15-36

Frans Nielsen
Synopsis: Underrated Dane has gone under the radar for two seasons now. His technical stats (i.e. everything not G-A-TP-PM-+/-) were awesome. He was one of the NHL's top 5 two-way centers. Now he's coming off a decent showing at his native Denmark's best World Championship ever. A summer on LI doing work with LI's staff and the confidence of having established a somewhat permanent job could all go a long way in making him a cog in this team's playoff push. It would be welcome.
If things don't go his way: 7-16-23
If things go his way: 17-33-50
What I predict: 9-21-30

Trent Hunter
Synopsis: The big man is a top teammate and truly appreciated in the locker room and as part of the franchise. He's been here for a lot of down times. He's been in decline. This season may be very telling as to how long he'll be an Islander and what he can do for this franchise. Lord knows we could use his rookie year form, at least in a scoring capacity. Looks like 3rd line RW will remain his calling.
If things don't go his way: 9-12-21
If things go his way: 20-26-46
What I predict: 14-15-29

P.A. Parenteau
Synopsis: It was a bit of a tryout. 8 points in 22 games as a spare-part-getting-older rookie isn't hopeless, but Parenteau is now 27 and has a clause in his contract stating it's the Island or he's off to the highest bidder in Europe. Good for him. There's probably much he could do in Switzerland or Germany, but can he cook the goose in the NHL? With Okposo out, it looks like we'll find out one way or the other. So is he Matt Moulson part deux??? Kip Miller part deux??? Justin Papineau part cent mille? Just hope he can make an impact in a scoring capacity.
If things don't go his way: 1-2-3, then EUROPE
If things go his way: 22-27-49
What I predict: 11-16-27

Doug Weight
Synopsis: Another year is being added on. We don't know how that shoulder of his is going to react. In addition, we don't know what role he's going to assume. For all we know, he could end up being a top 2 center. He's more likely to get wing time on a lower line and health permitting, a fair dosage of PP time. Streit's absence alone may see to that. There's no doubt he's amongst the smartest 10% of players we have. Is the body willing to make use of that?
If things don't go his way: 0-3-3
If things go his way: 12-30-42
What I predict: 4-19-23

Michael Grabner
Synopsis: Don't know what to think of him, but the situation isn't entirely different from Schremp's a year ago and Grabner has even done more in the NHL than Schremp had at this juncture last season. The kid has been a WHL and AHL goalscorer. He's at an age where, like Nielsen and Bergenheim before him, it was time to put up or shut up. Other than Vanek, he IS Austria's NHL hope. Now, last season I thought Moulson would make this team right out of camp and put up 14 points. He did the former and outdid the latter. I've got a sneaky suspicion that Grabner has the goods to help this team, but I'm gonna stay conservative and envision his stay here much like Justin Papineau's back in the day.
If things don't go his way: 0-0-0
If things go his way: 27-14-41
What I predict: 11-7-18

Zenon Konopka
Synopsis: Fists and face-offs. We'll take a big helping of both please! I'm gonna say that like Wisniewski, he appears to be in the ideal situation for him, with a coach who'll wanna see what other tools he has and can offer. I suspect he'll be a pleasant surprise. Look for him to play a role in holding late leads. Don't know if he's an answer on the PK.
If things don't go his way: 0-0-0
If things go his way: 5-10-15, 215 PMs
What I predict: 3-5-8, 190 PMs

Jon Sim
Synopsis: It's not nice to say, but I'm hoping we see as little of Jon as possible. He gets under the opponent's skin, but he's just not the guy fans 'pay to see'. Surely he's well-placed as a 4th line grinder and that line with Kenopka and Gillies can make life tough for opponents, but I'd rather see him in BPort and serving as a mentor while doing some heavy scoring for a team that's gonna have it hard. May Sim be there no later than when Okposo returns.
If things don't go his way: 0-0-0
If things go his way: 11-8-19
What I predict: 2-3-5

Matt Martin
Synopsis: Future fan fave should get a wee bit more than last year's cup of coffee, but to be honest, unless Parenteau and Grabner flat out fail miserably, he might as well be getting 1st/2nd line minutes in BPort. Sim, Gillies, Hilbert, Grabner and Parenteau can duke it out for lower line minutes in the meantime. Of course, if he just proves too ready down on the farm, then by all means, let him come up and begin his career as Wendel Clark's player reincarnation.
If things don't go his way: 0-0-0
If things go his way: 10-14-24, 150 PMs
What I predict: 1-4-5, 60 PMs

Nino Niederreiter
Synopsis: I'll say it simply: he's here for 9 games. I love that he's actually looked pretty doggone good in the preseason. He already appears mature beyond his years. I'm very excited about the role he can play here - next season. For now, he'll stopgap until Grabner is fit, who'll then get a top nine shot (along with Parenteau) until Okposo returns.
If things don't go his way: 0-0-0
If things go his way: 16-20-36
What I predict: 1-2-3 (then 80+ in Portland)

Trevor Gillies
Synopsis: Clubhouse boy is liked by his teammates. He seems to know what he's here for and although he's not in the Parros/Boogard heavyweight class, he can hold his own and duke it out. Can't wait for just that, primarily against the NYR and PHF. Otherwise, barely an ECHLer.
If things don't go his way: 0-0-0
If things go his way: 2-2-4, 250 PMs
What I predict: 1-1-2, 180 PMs

Jesse Joensuu
What I predict: 2-4-6
Rhett Rakhshani
What I predict: 1-3-4
David Ullstrom
What I predict: 0-2-2
Andy Hilbert
What I predict: 0-0-0

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