Former Islander Watch spent the last 2 weeks in Long Island catching up with family. We have returned to our station 3,000 miles from Uniondale in beautiful Orange, California to continue what we do best: disemminate FI news. Since our absence was so great as to make 4 posts tedious and unnecessary, we will recap the last 2 and a half weeks in one neat and tidy post. Here goes:
Semi-disgraced defenseman Sean Hill has decided to bail the NHL and has signed a 1 year deal with Biel of the Swiss League. Financial terms of the deal are unknown. Originally selected in 1988(!) NHL Entry Draft in the 8th Round, 167th overall by the Montreal Canadiens, Hill has played for Habs, Ducks, Sens, Hurricanes, Blues, Panthers, Isles and Wild. Hill has played in 876 NHL games compiling 298 points on 62 goals and 236 assists with a career -46 rating and 1,008 penalty minutes. In one of those lucky twists of fate, Hill won the Stanley Cup during his rookie season in 1992-93 despite playing only 31 regular season and 3 playoff games. We wish Sean the best in the Alps.
Talking of Minnesota players, the Wild have opted to buyout the last 3 years of winger Mark Parrish's contract. Due to the buyout the Wild will pay Parrish $728K over the next 2 seasons and $928K between 2010 and 2013. Parrish has supposedly drummed up interest in Vancouver as a backup plan (albeit a poor one) if the Mats Sundin thing does not work out. That comes as no surprise considering the Canucks are among the top FI mainstays. Parrish was originally chosen in the 1996 NHL Entry Draft by the Colorado Avalanche in the 3rd Round, 79th overall. Parrish has played for the Panthers, Kings and Wild but really shone the brightest in his time with the Isles. On 660 games Parrish has 208 goals and 164 assists for 372 points. He has a career -37 rating with 69 powerplay tallies and 37 game winners. We will keep you updated as soon as Mark finds a new home.
Toronto Maple Leafs' d-man Bryan McCabe has been the center of a lot of trade rumors this offseason with his agent continually denying that he would waive his no-trade clause. Well it seems as if McCabe might be willing to change his tune, that is if Toronto will play ball. One of the strongest rumors has McCabe and winger Alexei Ponikarovsky going to the Florida Panthers in exchange for d-man Mike Van Ryn and winger David Booth but not until at least September 1 when McCabe would cash in on a $2 million signing bonus with the Leafs. McCabe is supposedly more than willing to waive his no movement clause to head way south to the Panthers but the really question would be why Florida? If it is a lateral movement Bryan is looking for he might as well pursue another reportedly interested franchise such as the Rangers, Isles or even maybe a step up with the Flyers. FIW will keep eye on the story as we rapidly approach training camp.
And finally, the Philadelphia Flyers announced the promotion of former NHLer Craig Berube to assistant coach. Berube had spent last season as head coach to the Flyers' AHL affiliate the Philadelphia Phantoms. Seemingly an inane FI noteworthy, Berube, famed for his play with the Flyers and Capitals, spent 38 games with the Isles during the 2000-01 season. A penalty magnet, the roughnecked Berube had 3,149 penalty minutes on 1,054 career games including 54 in his short stint on the Island. Berube retired 7th all time in NHL history in penalty minutes. We wish Craig the best assistant coaching with the big club.
Check back soon for more news and updates as we brace for the 2008-09 season.