When you ask someone 'who is your favorite player?' you may get responses of such Sidney Crosby, Marian Gaborik, Evgeni Malkin, or even John Tavares on the Islanders front. If you ask my lovely wife the same question....
It truly boggles my mind how someone that has a great mind for the game and knows her hockey would find such a admiration for a 4th line player that doesn’t exactly do things that chicks dig.. like hit home-runs or score 40 goals.
For reasons unknown, she has a true affinity towards him, so much in fact that she made up a shirt that stated simply 'Bring Konopka Back!' and subsequently wore the shirt on Monday to his first game back on the Island as an Ottawa Senator.
Watching the Islanders recently I have noticed that they truly need a BIG defenseman on their blue line for the future. That led me to check in on some recently drafted defenseman by the Islanders that could fill that void in a few years. Scott Mayfield and Andrei Pedan were both taken in this past summer’s draft and both happen to have the size and skill needed to fill this void.
Scott Mayfield was taken in the 2nd round this past June and there is good reason why. The 6',4” defenseman is known for his offensive ability. Currently playing at Denver University, Mayfield has two goals and two assists while maintaining a +4 this season through 21 games. One of the knacks on him when he was drafted was that he has the size and skating ability to be a top 4 d-man in the NHL but needed to learn to use his size more effectively. Denver unfortunately doesn’t keep a hits stat like the NHL and that is something I would like to see to see if his physical game has improved. Denver is known for having a great coaching staff that is able to work with players on specific skill sets; this should work in Mayfield’s favor and hopefully get him to be more physical and use his size to his advantage.
Ryan Strome displayed that he has the hands, the vision and the speed to compete at the highest level of hockey when he put on a show at the Islanders rookie scrimmage this past summer. He was making plays everywhere he was on the ice and then finished the game with an unbelievable shootout goal in the skills competition on Islanders goaltender, Anders Nilsson.
This move still makes my jaw drop when I watch it. Granted, will he ever be able to pull something off like this in a real game? Highly unlikely, especially if he doesn't want to be jumped by the opposing goalie and all of his teammates. But it just goes to show how much skill this kid really has.
Strome is currently participating in the World Juniors tournament for Team Canada to add on to his impressive season with the Niagara Ice Dogs of the OHL. In 24 games with the Ice Dogs, Strome has 16 goals, 17 assists and 33 points along with a +11 rating and 34 PIMs. He had 106 points in 65 games played last year with the Ice Dogs and appears to be on pace for another great season.
Ryan Strome is an 18-year old out of Mississauga, Ontario that many Islanders fans were unfamiliar with until the 2011 NHL Entry Draft. The 6'1, 183 pound center was selected by the New York Islanders with the fifth overall pick, igniting a fan base to a new level of excitement on draft day.
That's because Strome is a gifted center with great vision and superb play-making ability. He also has some of the craziest hands, as evident by his goal that he scored on Islanders goalie prospect, Anders Nilsson in the rookie scrimmage over the summer.
Currently playing for the Niagara Ice Dogs of the OHL, Strome has five goals and four assists in only seven games played since be...