Christian Arnold, Islanders Point Blank:
Everyone was expecting Garth Snow to make a trade during the NHL Draft. He did, but it did not involve the two most likely players to be dealt there.
Kyle Okposo and Michael Grabner remain members of the New York Islanders, for now. It was believed that at least one of them would have been dealt on Friday or Saturday. Instead, it was Griffin Reinhart who was sent to Edmonton in return for the 16th and 33rd overall picks in this year’s draft.
The market for Grabner and Okposo just was not there during the two day draft being held in Sunrise, Florida. More from Newsday:
Sources indicated the Isles received precious little interest in Michael Grabner, who was actively shopped around this weekend and before. Grabner carries a $3-million salary-cap hit but has a salary of $5 million this coming season, making him unattainable for many teams.
Sources also indicated that trade interest in Kyle Okposo was not strong. Contract extension talks between Snow and Okposo’s reps could pick up this summer, but it isn’t likely that Okposo will be seeking less than a six-year contract at $7 million per season.
If Snow is unwilling to pony up, Okposo could be shopped more aggressively as training camp draws near.
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Christian Arnold, Islanders Point Blank:
Islanders’ general manager Garth Snow had himself another good year at the draft. New York did not have any picks in the first round, but by the of end of Friday night the Islanders had made two first round selections.
On day two, the Islanders came away with five defenseman to replenish the team’s blue line prospects. They even managed to make a bit of history with the selection of Andong Song, the first Chinese born player to be drafted by an NHL team.
The 2015 draft for the Islanders was one in which they could pick the best players available and not for need. They already have a strong group of prospects in the system and now they have the building blocks to make the team very good for many years to come. To read more of this story, click here
The Islanders drafted Petter Hansson with their seventh round pick, No. 202 overall, in Saturday’s NHL Draft.
Hansson, 19, is a 6-foot-1, 176-pound Swedish defenseman whom HockeyProspect.com ranked the 181st prospect in this year’s draft.
He totaled 15 goals and 19 assists in 38 games with Linköping J20 last season.
The Islanders drafted Andong Song with the 172nd pick in the NHL Draft on Saturday.
Song, 18, is the first Chinese-born player to be drafted.
Song is a 6-foot-1, 194-pound defenseman who scored 10 points in 26 games for Lawrence Academy (N.J.) last season.
“When I was starting out hockey, there were maybe less than 200 people playing at the time,” Song said on NHL Network.
Song started playing hockey when he was about 7, then moved to Oakville, Ontario when he was 10.
“More rinks are being built around the city,” Song said about the hockey landscape in China since he left. “It’s starting to grow.”
Song will play a postgrad season at Phillips Academy in Andover, Massachusetts.
The Islanders drafted defenseman Ryan Pilon with the 147th overall draft pick after acquiring it from the Florida Panthers (Islanders, 12:47 p.m.).
In exchange for the pick, the Isles traded a 2016 5th round pick.
Pilon recorded 52 points (11 goals, 41 assists) in 68 games this past season with the WHL’s Brandon Wheat Kings. The 6-foot-2 left-hander is the nephew of former Islander Rich Pilon and was partnered with defensive prospect Ryan Pulock in Brandon during the 2013-14 season.
NHL Central Scouting had Pilon ranked 24th and ISS Hockey had him ranked 94th. Elite Prospects expands more on what Pilon brings to the Islanders:
A strong two-way defenceman with the work ethic, determination, and skill to get the job done in all situations. Possesses a quick, accurate release on his shot. Pilon is a smooth skater and is able to quarterback plays as he sees the ice very well. He exhibits very good decision making in all three zones.
With the 112th overall pick in the 4th round of the draft, the Islanderes selected defenseman Parker Wotherspoon (Isles, 12:11 p.m.).
The British Columbia native tallied 42 points with nine goals and 33 assists in 72 games with the Tri-City Americans in the WHL last season.
He is the younger brother of Flames’ defenseman Tyler Wotherspoon.
NHL Central Scouting had him ranked 43rd and Future Considerations had him ranked 54th. More on Weatherspoon via Future Considerations:
A composed, two-way defender…a high-end skater…good acceleration to his stride and excellent top-end speed…uses his skating to create offence…handles the puck well and makes simple but effective outlet passes…possesses a hard shot with a quick release…defensively he is very smart and composed…excellent gap work and a great stick when defending both off the cycle and off the rush…not overly physical at all but does use his frame to protect pucks against the forecheck…nothings seems to faze this kid.
With the 82nd overall pick in the 2015 draft, the New York Islanders selected Mitchell Vande Sompel (Islanders, 11:35 a.m.).
Sompel picked up 12 goals and 51 assists for 63 points last season with the Oshawa Generals in the OHL. He was a teammate with the Islanders’ highly touted prospect Michael Dal Colle. NHL Central Scouting had Vande Sompel ranked 34th among North American Skaters and ISS Hockey had him ranked 54th.
More on Vande Sompel via Elite Prospects:
Vande Sompel is an undersized, but dynamic offensive defenceman. He skates well, generates lots of offense and is very smart in both zones. He could improve defensively, but has the potential to be a Dan Boyle type offensive defenceman has he continues to get stronger and grow more confident. One of the best offensive defenceman available in this years draft.
The 5-foot-10 left-handed Canadian defenseman is the Isles first pick of the second day of the draft.