7:00 pm – Your News and Notes from Day 1 of minicamp…
Player of the Day (aka Let’s Start Over-hyping…): Travis Hamonic. The Western Hockey League defenseman does look good, we cannot deny. Heck, he’s better than that Chynoweth kid from the West looked at his age – and Deano was a first-rounder! Hamonic, an Islanders second round pick in 2008, will play one more year of junior, sign a three-year deal by next spring and – if his development keeps pace – may only need one season in the AHL.
Missing Assistant: First-year assistant coach Dean Chynoweth joined Scott Gordon on the ice for both sessions today. They were joined by Bridgeport head coach Jack Capuano, goalie coaches Sudarshan Maharaj and Mike Dunham (who split the two practices) and development chief/local legend Bryan Trottier. Missing was a second NHL assistant. John Chabot was not there, likely a sign he is not returning. The Islanders had no comment.
Among those watching the workouts from the Iceworks perch were Garth Snow, Ryan Jankowski, Ken Morrow, Eric Cairns, GM assistant Kerry Gwydir, scouts Chris O’Sullivan and Toby O’Brien and Bridgeport assistant coaches Pat Bingham and Matt Bertani.
Here Comes the Moening: Rugged forward Travis Moen gets a three-year deal from Montreal. Got it. Next! (That’s an inside joke, if you follow my occasional cameos in Comments).
The Other First-Rounder: 12th overall pick Calvin de Haan conceded that the presence of his heralded Oshawa buddy enables him to practice his craft without pressure. “I’ve always flown under the radar,” the defenseman said. So much, that he had no idea he’d go 12th. “My family and I were sitting by the Islanders table at the draft,” said de Haan. “When they made those trades, everyone – including us – was buzzing about what they were going to do. Then they called my name and my heart stopped.”
Trivino Pays The Way: As NCAA players, Islanders prospects like Aaron Ness (Minnesota), Rhett Rakhshani (Denver) and Corey Trivino (Boston University) can only attend minicamp if the Islanders don’t pay for them. I asked Trivino, “How does that work? Do you just give your Mastercard number to the Islanders?” He said, “Yeah, pretty much. Well, we give our parents’ credit card number.”
Trivino, with Ness and Hamonic the Islanders’ trio of 2008 second rounders, said he will wait for the Islanders’ guidance on if he should ever leave college early. “It’s important for me to know what they think,” he said. “I won’t leave college unless management thinks I’m ready. If I ever do, it will be to play with the best of the best. For me, the ideal is that if I ever leave school, it will be because I’m in the best position to play in the NHL.”
With BU buddy Colin Wilson in Nashville, Trivino moves up coach Jack Parker’s depth chart. “We lost 5 of our top 6 forwards,” he said. “But we’re still going to be good. Our D corps is very stable. I have some tough shoes to fill, but the opportunity is incredible.”
You’ll Need a Wristband on Sunday: The Prospect Minicamp scrimmage on Sunday is open to the public. However, Islanders PR sent out this release today: “Due to capacity limitations and the overwhelming level of interest, a limited number of wristbands will be issued for admission on July 12. Wristbands will be issued starting at 9:00 am and fans are encouraged to arrive early as admission will be granted on a first-come, first-served basis. Fans must have a wristband in order to gain access to the rink to watch open practice.”
Saturday Schedule: Group 2 (Josh Bailey’s) skates from 10-11 am, Group 1 (you-know-who’s) goes on at 11:30 am. Media availability around 1:00 pm. Point Blank reports after and, if warranted, during.
I have a handle on the storylines and the questions you want addressed. Camp has 5 more days. I’ll get to all of it. Commments. Tavares talk continues below.