Understatement 1: the 2016-17 season was rough for the New York Islanders. Understatement 2: John Tavares‘ future is a pretty big deal, to Islanders and hockey fans alike. If Tavares is growing impatient with the Islanders’ process, then 2017-18 stands as potentially integral in keeping him around.
NHL training camp is less than a month away, and the last vestiges of the hockey offseason are coming to a close. Pretty soon NHL players will be back in their hockey cities of employment, and informal captain’s practices will begin in earnest. In about six weeks from now, there will be hockey again on the sports calendar. For now we’ll have to settle for digging down deep into the late summer Hagg Bag mailbag for all sorts of questions, and hopefully some answers too. As always these are real questions from real fans sent to my twitter account using the #HaggBag hash tag, real emails to my firstname.lastname@example.org account and real messages to my CSN Facebook page. So without further ado,
Last season the Rangers had a group of four alternate captains including Marc Staal, Rick Nash, Derek Stepan and Dan Girardi. After moving Stepan and Girardi the Rangers could have two potential openings for players to wear letters on the front of their jerseys. Since Ryan McDonagh became captain in 2014-15, the Rangers alternate captains have been: 14-15: Stepan, Marty St. Louis, Staal and Girardi 15-16: Stepan, Staal and Girardi 16-17: Stepan, Staal, Girardi and Rick Nash Alain Vigneault told Dan Rosen of NHL.com that he and his staff will see who wants to do more on the ice and off the ice, "who wants to expand his role as far as leadership and example and influence?" (NHL.com) Adam Rotter: