Kevin SchultzTSN’s Bob McKenzie was on the TSN Drive on 1050 AM in Toronto on Thursday. After discussing the situation in Toronto with goaltender James Reimer, McKenzie spent the rest of the segment discussing the Islanders.
One of the main focus points was the draft pick that the Islanders owe to the Buffalo Sabres for the Thomas Vanek trade and whether they will keep it this year or defer it to next year. If the pick ends up in the top-10 of the draft, and based on this season that’s pretty much assured, the Islanders have the option to defer it to next year’s draft in 2015.
McKenzie discussed that the Islanders will have until June 1 – after the draft lottery — to let the league and the Sabres know what they would like to do with the pick. He also thought that there is going to be a revision to the draft lottery system for 2015 – not 2014 – and that no one really knows what that revision will look like. He speculated that it could mean the last-place team has less of a chance of winning the lottery or as many as the top three picks will be lotteried.
Given the uncertainty surrounding the system, his prediction was that the Islanders will keep the pick this year if it turns out to be a top-three pick and “roll the dice” next year. The panel also asked him if the Islanders would keep the pick this year and consider trading it, but he said the trade market for first round picks this year was reduced because of the lack of a true superstar in this year’s draft.
In McKenzie’s opinion, he thought the Isles are a better team than they were this year and that without injuries and a few changes they can be a playoff team next season, as he believed last year’s version of the team was a more accurate representation of their ability.
And finally, the panel discussed Martin Brodeur and his desire to leave New Jersey. It was suggested that Minnesota – where his kids play hockey at Shattuck St. Mary’s – or Long Island would be good destinations. McKenzie thought he might be an interesting addition to the Islanders once they make the move to Brooklyn. However, since the Islanders won’t be in Brooklyn this year and Brodeur is year-to-year at his age, it would be an unlikely scenario.