Mar 29, 2011, 3:29 PM EDT
Although the New York Islanders have six games left in the 2010-11 season, the fact that they have been mathematically eliminated from the playoffs shifts all eyes to the future. The last three bits of news all focus on the 2011-12 campaign, whether it be their ticket office (ticket prices going down), the outlook of a long-time veteran (Doug Weight) or the near future of young goalie Al Montoya.
Weight is done for the season and Katie Strang reports that the veteran center is also leaning toward retirement. The once-prolific passer is dealing with back issues, problems that have Weight concerned about the possibility of risking permanent nerve damage in that area if he keeps playing. While it’s too early to say, Weight said he might try to stay with the organization in some kind of front office role if he does retire.
While Weight’s status as an active pro continues to shrink, one player who may have earned a longer stay at the NHL level is goalie Al Montoya. The team apparently likes what it saw from him during his brief stay after acquiring him from the Phoenix Coyotes, because the team announced that they signed him to a one-year extension today. Strang passes along an important note: the deal is a one-way contract, meaning that it won’t be as easy for the team to send Montoya to the minors next season.
Aside from players who are trying to prove they deserve to stick with the team in ’11-12, just about everyone in the Islanders season is already thinking about next season. For Weight, it’s unclear if he will suit up again. For Montoya, he finally might get the chance to prove he’s more than a borderline pro.
The best part for Islanders fans: it should be cheaper to watch him try.
- Injuries piling up as preseason schedule begins 11
- Report: Fedorov denies contract offer was made to Johansen 5
- Report: Johansen has gotten no shortage of KHL offers 34
- Update: Drouin out with upper body injury, not expected to miss preseason 1
- Report: NHL officials to participate in preseason without new CBA 1
- Evander Kane: I know I can score 50 goals 14
- ‘C’-less Thornton comes out swing against Wilson’s ‘tomorrow team’ talk 18
- Joe Sakic’s now general manager in name too 6
- Update: Giroux out two weeks with lower-body injury 26
- Update: Crosby on ice with Penguins teammates Friday, leaves early 5
- Heeeeeere’s Johnny! Davidson shreds Johansen’s agent for ‘baffling, nonsensical’ contract demands (65)
- Jackets reveal Johansen offers — including an eight year, $46M deal (55)
- Will the NHL publicize divers? (48)
- No icing on the PK? The USHL will see how that looks (43)
- Just how damaging are heated negotiations between Jackets, RFA Johansen? (38)