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Isles Going Top Heavy

Despite a rough season last year, the Isles have decided to maintain their philosophy of focusing their talent (and $$$$) on their top two lines. The Isles feature four 80+ rated players and eight 77+ rated players on their top two lines. Dennis Ezhov continues to lead the way on the blueline despite heavy interest during the offseason. The Isles told every team that inquired about Ezhov that the deal would need to be one that sets up the Isles with young talent for the future, but the right deal just never came across the table. In addition, the Isles have Ezhov under an endorsement deal with ESPN which makes it even less incentive to deal him in a trade.

Although the Isles are confident that their top two lines can hang with anyone in the league, there is a severe drop off in talent and experience on the third and fourth lines. The Isles have had to ask young players to fill third and fourth line roles that most other teams wouldn't want so loaded with these types of players. Although there is a risk that the young players simply aren't ready for this much of a role at this point in their careers, the Isles continue to feel it creates opportunity for young players while allowing the team to pay big money to their top lines.

This season more than any in the past did the Isles have to focus on this same strategy. Last year's abysmal season hit the Isles wallet more than potentially any in the Isles history. The team on the ice struggle to win games, resulting in lower attendance than normal and missing all of the money generated during the playoffs that the team had been so dependent upon. On top of that, the Isles stars just didn't perform like usual, resulting in two endorsements being lost at the end of the season despite a nice late push to try and salvage one of them. Then the cherry on top was the lack of activity and participation from the Isles management. Changes at home, at work and to life in general limited the profit sharing that the team was also used to based on the success of the league.

The Isles are hoping to return to form this season and were off to a 3-1 start to being the season. Since that hot start, the Isles have dropped two straight. The Isles have a tough test tomorrow to get about .500 when they head to Calgary to take on the Flames who are 3-1-3-0-0 so far this season, with Nathan Horton leading the league in scoring with 13 points.

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Posted: Saturday, April 15, 2017

By: Jay Reardon

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Previous Team News

4/15/2017 7:31:55 PM - Isles Going Top Heavy

3/8/2016 11:17:28 AM - Isles Forced to Deal Kosmachev

2/12/2015 3:12:44 PM - Isles FNHL Cup Prediction

2/4/2015 9:04:47 PM - Isles Playoff Predictions - Conference Finals

1/26/2015 8:39:15 PM - Isles Playoff Predictions - 2nd Round

1/12/2015 10:23:25 PM - Isles Playoff Predictions

9/17/2014 - Reardon Ranks

9/10/2014 - Reardon Ranks

9/5/2014 - Isles are Blazing Hot

8/19/2014 - The Curse of 4

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GM Information

 Jay Reardon

 2003

 Orlando, FL

 United States

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