Sunday, June 24, 2007

FI on the Move: Adrian Aucoin

On Thursday the Chicago Blackhawks traded off captain and veteran defensman Adrian Aucoin and a 2007 7th round pick to Calgary for d-men Andrei Zyuzin and Steve Marr. FI Aucoin optioned for the trade in hopes that the jump from rebuilding franchise to contender would mean good things for him in the immediate future. The trade is the just the first in what will be a busy summer for Former Islanders everywhere. When the free agency window opens on July 1 it will be no holds barred for the top talent throughout the league.

Aucoin's exodus from the Windy City is by no means surprising considering the rocky time he had in his 2 injury-filled seasons he had backstopping the Blackhawks. In 92 games with Chicago he tallied a mere 5 goals and 17 assists for 22 points. Aucoin, who the Flames hope will see a career revitalization, has 694 games under his belt while scoring 88 goals and adding another 179 assists. A career 5.9% shooter, Aucoin has 47 powerplay tallies on his career and has slammed home 12 game winners. By no means an elite defenseman anymore, Aucoin would make most teams proud as lead on a 2nd defensive pairing.

Stay tuned for all the FI moves that will be occurring this offseason. As always, this is your home for Former Islander action.

Sunday, June 10, 2007

Newest Former Islander: Alexei Yashin

Even better news than the Anaheim Ducks winning the Stanley Cup was the New York Islanders starting off the postseason right by dumping Alexei Yashin in a buyout scheme that makes the one-time 10 year deal seem like a mistake of the past. By doing so the Islanders will surrender about $2.2 million a year off of their cap space over 8 years in a $17.6 million structured buyout. Assuming that Yashin will sign somewhere as a free agent we are in the early stages of our first summer FI signing.

Yashin was by no means a poor player. Instead, underperforming and unfulfilling to expectations seem to be what he will be remembered for. In 346 games with the Isles Yashin tallied 119 goals, 171 assists for 290 points. We wish Yashin... well not the best, but instead we bid him adieu and hope alll works out well for both sides.

Finals Wrapped Up

As you all very well know by now the Anaheim Ducks won the first Stanley Cup in California history this week. They manhandled the Ottawa Senators 6-2 in Game 5 and handily took the series 4 wins to 1. In a postseason that saw the Senators dominate their first three competitors in 5 game series it was an about face to see them lose their edge while at the very edge of Lord Stanley's pinnacle. Ottawa, of course, has let Canada down just as Vancouver (1994), Calgary (2004) and Edmonton (2006) all have done since the Canadiens were the last, um, Canadian team to win in 1993. (Of course Montreal had to get past the Islanders in the Eastern Conference Final in '93 to eventually win that Cup, but that is another point for another time.)

Interest here at Former Islander Watch was merely at the spectator level. With no FIs in the chase for Stanley Cup permanency this series lacked true meaning or punch. But it was still some pretty good hockey. We congratulate the Ducks on an impressive run and are glad to say that we will be joining them in the Anaheim area later this summer, not in any related capacity, but nonetheless.