Garth Snow Makes One Final Move Before Opening Night
Michael Grabner may not be the addition that most fans were expecting when injuries hit the New York Islanders line-up before opening night like a Dion Phaneuf hip-check, but he may turn out to be another successful move by the savvy GM.
Grabner is a former first round pick by the Vancouver Canucks, having been taken by them with the 14th selection in the 2006 entry draft. The speedy right winger recently turned 23 as of yesterday and has the potential to flourish in Scott Gordon's system.
Last year Grabner made his NHL debut with the Canucks and managed to play in 20 games, scoring 5 goals, 6 assists and 11 points. The organization decided to part ways with him after last season and he was invited to training camp by the Florida Panthers. However, he did not impress Panthers GM Dale Tallon enough to make the final cut. He was placed on waivers yesterday to be sent to their farm team had he not been claimed, but that's where Garth Snow stepped in.
If he doesn't work out as everyone hopes, he can just as easily be placed on waivers again for another team to take a chance on him or to be sent to the Bridgeport Sound Tigers. It's a low-risk move, one that Garth has done before and seen work out in his benefit.
Last year Snow made a very similar move when he took Rob Schremp off of the Edmonton Oilers' hands. After working his way out of the press-box, Schremp quickly became a fan-favorite, especially in the shoot-outs where he really earned his place. However the young center will be out for the next 3-4 weeks with a back injury, joining Kyle Okposo and Mark Streit for the time being. This allows Grabner to get another opportunity to prove that he deserves to play for an NHL team.
If you would like to see more of my spin on the Islanders opening line-up for their first game of the season this Saturday vs. the Dallas Stars, head over to my latest post at The Hockey Writers: http://thehockeywriters.com/isles-roster-set-for-opening-night/
It's finally October folks. Let's get ready for some hockey!
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