“DiPietro, taken with the number one overall selection in the 2000 NHL draft, was meant to be the cornerstone of a rebuilding franchise when he signed a then record 15-year, $67.5 million contract in 2006.” – Reuters
The New York Islanders have placed goalie Rick DiPietro, the team’s one-time franchise player, on waivers. It looks as though the Isles have said good riddance to bad trash as they prepare for the move to Brooklyn. Could the Islanders’ Coliseum lease be next thing to go?
A Coliseum albatross
It’s no secret that the Islanders have been dreadful over the last several years. With only two wins at home this season, it appears the orange and blue are on track to preserve their perennial bad streak yet again.
A major part of the team’s losing ways has been a lack of authority in the crease. For the last 13 years goaltender Rick DiPietro was supposed to change all of that. Moreover, with a slow glove hand and lazy stick, he just couldn’t fill the net. That’s all over now. DiPietro, 31, has been demoted.
According to Reuters "Islanders waive goodbye,” published Feb.22, 2013, “The New York Islanders placed goaltender Rick DiPietro on waivers on Friday, paying the price for what might go down as one of the most expensive gaffes in National Hockey League history.”
DiPietro will play on a minor league affiliate until some other team claims him. Yeah, fat chance that will ever happen. He won 130 games for the Isles, but lost 136.
Wang cleaning house
Placing DiPietro on waivers is just the latest house cleaning measure by Islander owner Charles Wang prior to the team’s exit for the Barclays Center in Brooklyn at the end of 2015.
In January, a multi-million dollar loan previously taken by the Long Island Marriott and Hotel Conference Center, which is on the same site as the Coliseum and owned by Wang, was turned over to another company that services debt on distressed properties. It’s clear that Wang and the Islanders getting their house in order before their final exit.
First it was the loan and now DiPietro. The Islanders are cutting long-time ties to Nassau County. Look for the team to wriggle out of their Coliseum contract next.