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Isles 2024 review

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PRESEASON EXPECTATIONS The Isles have an amazing goalie, a great solid backup in net, some good players but missing this and that. First round fodder sounded about right to most.


FINAL RECORD 39-27-16 93 points, 3rd in the Metro, lost in five quick and easy games to Carolina.


STRANGE STAT OF THE YEAR For the first time since overtime started,  the Isles led the league in overtime games, 27 total, essentially one third of all games went to OT. Surprisingly with such tough goalies they went a very poor 11-16 during the extra time. Still, 27 overtime games.


HIGH POINT OF THE YEAR Firing Lane Lambert and hiring Patrick Roy. January 20th the Isles were in a terrible skid, losing 8 of 10 and fired Lambert and hired Roy. Down the stretch they played tough every period, going 20-12-6 to secure third in the division. Roy made the difference. They went 8-0-1 in their final 9 games.


LOW POINT OF THE YEAR  They struggled mightily mid March, losing six in a row, they couldnt score, Sorokin had his worst stretch of the year. Overall in those six games they were outscored 26-9 before they righted the ship.


WHAT WENT RIGHT Barzal was a point a game player and played fantastic defense all year. Noah Dobson somehow had a brilliant year in New York and nobody seemed to notice, he was brilliant all year 70 points in 80 games. Brock Nelson led the team for the third straight year in goals with 34, Horvat had 33 and was a force in the dot, Palmieri had 30. Alexander Romanov was fantastic as a shut down defender. Varlamov was incredible as a solid backup and they would have missed the playoffs if not for many tough wins by him down the stretch. Simon Holmstrom was a pleasent surprise on the bottom six wing position.


WHAT WENT WRONG Sorokin was very ordinary, a 3.01 goals against is not what you want of an ace goalie signed to 8.25 million per for the next several presidential elections. Anders Lee showed signs of his age. Pulock and Pelech didnt do much on the back end. Oliver Wahlstrom has turned into a bust. Scott Mayfield was a bust. 

An aside, I was high on Lane Lambert but he lost the team early. 


FREE AGENTS Mike Reilly might have been the 2nd best defender on the team and they really need to resign him. Aho is another useful defender they need to resign.  Longtime Isle Clutterbuck is likely not being resigned.

 They have Tampas first and an extra second and are looking well going into the draft.


TOP PROSPECTS Samuel Bolduc will likely earn a full time bottom third role on defense, he looked good in limited time last year, they think his offense will develop. 

  This is really a lousy talent pool, Lou Lamoriello has always been a terrible draft manager and the Isles are in rough shape here. William Dufour is their best forward prospect but he was really bad at Bridgeport, maybe tiny Ruslan Iskhakov can play center a bit but the evidence isnt there so far. 


OFFSEASON QUESTIONS Now what? Most everyone on the team is signed for long term they have settled into mediocrity and  can they improve? Did Sorokin have a bad year or is he starting to show signs of slipping? Goalies are so damn fickle, i think good years will follow up. 

 They are right with Nashville and the Kings, flawed goodish teams with very little upside or downside.

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