An open ended letter to Mr. Visnovsky
Steve Giangaspro on Mon, 2013-01-14 12:26
Let us go back to the 2012 NHL Draft. The Islanders fan base buzzed when news spread that you were traded to solidify a blue line that could benefit from your experience and impressive play.
A lot of fans moved to YouTube to find out more about a player that spent his whole career in the Western Conference. They didn't know much more than how cool your last name would look on an Islanders sweater. (Photo Credit: Flickr/Daralee's Web World Photos)
It was hard for the fans to hide their excitement when they saw this addition that could help immediately. It was a breath of fresh air that someone added to the roster could help right away. Not in 2 years. Not in 1 year. But now. Garth Snow had done a great job in executing this trade.
That ended almost immediately when you filed a grievance with the NHL, trying to void the trade. This wasn't a great way to endear yourself to a fan base. They were willing to put that aside once the case was settled and the trade was indeed valid.
There was a sense that you did not want to be in Uniondale. You are not alone in this. You are not the first player, nor will you be the last player to claw in the doorway on the way to Long Island. But the actions of your peers do not excuse your behavior.
Show some professionalism.
Let us remember that you are playing professional hockey for a living. What reflection of yourself are you portraying when you are dragging your feet to honor your contract that the Islanders acquired?
Now you are giving the organization and the fan base the run around saying that you wanted to stay in the KHL. (Photo Credit: Flickr/bridgetds)
All the fanbase is asking is for a fair chance. You have an opportunity to play with John Tavares, Mark Streit, Travis Hamonic, and Matt Moulson. The crop of young talent is impressive. You will be emphasized in a top defensive pairing. You will be showcased in the large market of New York. You will get to experience the passion that these fans bring to the game.
I know you are thinking that calling Nassau Coliseum home is a frightening fact. But the experience coming in on the road is different from when you play here on a nightly basis.
Besides playing, Long Island is more than the expansive stretch of black top in front of the Coliseum's doors. It is a beautiful place to live and work.
It does not have to be mundane on a nightly basis. Give the fans a reason to cheer.
You make the team better and if good, home ice advantage can be achieved here in Uniondale.
Do us a favor and watch the Old Barn shaking off of its foundation during the 2001-02 NHL Playoffs in that epic series against Toronto. Shawn Bates' goal beating Curtis Joseph could be heard all the way in Montauk.
It can be like that again.
To be honest, fans are pretty angry at you right now. They have a right to be. You are the latest to spite the Islanders and it hurts.
However, that doesn't last long. Look at Nabokov as an example. He didn't want to be here and he tried his hardest not to suit up for the Islanders. He did despite his efforts and fans now chant his name.
You have a chance to right this. Come to camp and play hard. You can be part of something special here.
Something great is building here.
Don't be stranded this season. Swim ashore. (Photo Credit: Flickr/Dougtone)
The fans of the New York Islanders