There have been very few times during my time as a blogger for this fine outlet that I’ve seen a news story come up that makes me blur the lines of a Detroit-area sports fan and a blogger with a fan’s perspective.
As many of you have known over my time blogging, my favorite hockey team is the Edmonton Oilers with the Red Wings a close second. If Edmonton had pulled the move the Islanders GM Garth Snow just pulled, I would have questioned my allegiance to the Oilers. Taking Evgeni Nabokov from a winning franchise to one of the league’s worst is nothing short of a crime and in due time it will officially cut short Snow’s reign as Islanders GM.
Garth Snow is a former goaltender who only twice in his career played the majority of his team’s games in net during a season. The same goalie that had a career losing record, and won NHL executive of the year four years ago. In his first year he squeaked the Islanders into the playoffs and they haven’t been back since. To call him a disappointment as Islanders GM would not be a stretch, but he does happen to represent one of the league’s most doomed franchises.
Having Nabokov as an Islander shows a glaring issue with one of the NHL’s top pro-league rules that discourages free agency during the middle of the season. While the rule applies to all teams, it discourages winning teams to add players, while encouraging losing teams to stunt player growth by adding players they do not really need.
This does not keep Snow out of the water however, while his Islanders team was badly in need of some goaltending help, he did step into a situation that he created with the earlier trade of Dwayne Roloson. Either way, Red Wings fans should feel cheated, yet hopeful that they have a GM in Ken Holland who believes the team can always use additional pieces.