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There’s something fishy going on with Nino Niederreiter

Nov 26, 2011, 12:05 PM EST

Nino Niederreiter Getty Images

Islanders forward Nino Niederreiter is set to be a healthy scratch again today making it four games in a row the 19 year-old rookie has gotten to hang out in the press box. Benching a kid that young without an injury being given as the reason starts to arouse suspicion as to what’s going on.

Katie Strang of ESPN New York digs in wondering if perhaps Niederreiter is destined to be sent back to junior hockey. After all, Niederreiter has only played in three games this year so he’s still eligible to go back, but Isles GM Garth Snow says he’s not going back.

Some think that something else is afoot here, however. Kevin Schultz of Islanders Point Break thinks that something else a bit bigger is going on with Nino. Schultz says that there’s no good reason for making Niederreiter a healthy scratch unless there’s something else going on behind the scenes. Meanwhile, the New York Times’ Chris Botta tweets that Niederreiter’s benching could just be part of a cost-cutting move for the Isles.

Yikes.

One thing’s for sure, Niederreiter is part of the Islanders’ future one way or another and keeping a talented kid on the bench while the team stinks out loud on the ice and can’t score doesn’t make much sense. If he’s hurt again (he spent a month on the shelf with a groin injury) the Isles should say so. If there’s something else going on here though, leaving everyone to speculate does more harm than good.

  1. bcjim - Nov 26, 2011 at 12:45 PM

    Hopefully he is merely waiting in line at the courthouse to have his name change petition heard by a judge.

    Nino Niederreiter…Seriously?

    • dipthatchip - Nov 26, 2011 at 1:30 PM

      well thought out comment, bro

      • bcjim - Nov 26, 2011 at 6:09 PM

        Thanks :-)

    • bcisleman - Nov 26, 2011 at 4:20 PM

      BTW, I think Nino has a really cool name.

  2. bcisleman - Nov 26, 2011 at 1:03 PM

    The only logical assumption is that his groin is still bugging him and they are being secretive about it and I agree its not wise. Groin injuries linger and they are being careful–good–and secretive–bad. And I am losing more and more respect for Chris Botta.

  3. ballistictrajectory - Nov 26, 2011 at 1:30 PM

    Seguin did not play very much for the Bruins in his first year. He wasn’t big enough or confident enough to play within the coach’s system, so he got scratched a lot. When he did play he was able to contribute and in the off season he got to work on the things he needed to do. Now, the fans expect he’s going to score very time he touches the puck. Can’t rush the rookies out of junior into the NHL. Doing that messes them up, unless they are a real exception.

    • bcisleman - Nov 26, 2011 at 4:23 PM

      All true–except Seguin and Nino were drafted the same year and Seguin went right to the NHL whereas Nino was 9 games and back to Portland. This is almost certainly about lingering effects of Nino’s groin injury.

    • sideshow - Nov 27, 2011 at 2:31 AM

      Seguin wasn’t scratched a lot last year. He played 74 of 82 games. I wouldn’t call being scratched 1 of every 10 games “a lot” for a rookie. When he played, he usually played 10+ minutes (sometimes less, but he usually got to be involved in every game he played). So he was involved pretty much the entire season.

  4. govtminion - Nov 26, 2011 at 9:29 PM

    I’m not even wasting time trying to think of reasons why this could be happening. It’s the Islanders- aren’t we all pretty used to seeing them do things that make no sense at this point?

    There doesn’t have to be a legit reason- if there is one, great, but Long Island has been a logic-free zone for at least 15 years now. The normal rules don’t apply.

    (That’s not a swipe at Isles fans- honestly, I feel bad that you guys have to watch this crap every year. You deserve better!)

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