In 2014, the New York Islanders selected Oshawa Generals superstar Michael Dal Colle with the 5th pick in the draft. Many people are now wondering why the Isles took Dal Colle, instead of some big names like Dylan Larkin, William Nylander, and David Pastrnak. While it’s early, many say that this is one of the better draft classes in recent memory. Dal Colle came into Isles camp in 2016 as a big time scorer that everyone expected would get right up to the NHL. He had a solid rookie season for the Sound Tigers, notching 15 goals and 26 assists for a total of 41 points, which isn’t bad for a rookie. Many people thought Dal Colle would be better than fellow class of ’14 member Josh Ho-Sang, who has been up and down with the Isles.
Is He A Bust?
Many people are saying “MDC is a bust because he isn’t playing well.” That’s where I disagree. I’ve been watching Michael play for the last two seasons, and after talking with fellow Sound Tiger fans, we have agreed that while it may be taking some time for MDC to get up to the Islanders, there are a few reasons for it.
He’s Working on Becoming a 2-Way Player
While he hasn’t put up the numbers many fans would like so far through the first three months of the season, Michael Dal Colle has been working on the other parts of his game, such as defensive zone coverage. Another thing that he is working on is his penalty kill work. This goes to the way that Brent Thompson makes players better. He has done this to multiple players. For example, when Casey Cizikas came to Bridgeport in 2011, he was a goal scorer. Thompson got him to become the rough player he is today with that scoring touch. Fans need to realize that it takes time to become an all-around player that Doug Weight and Garth Snow want MDC to be.
He’s Not the Only One from That Draft
Many people consider the 2014 draft to be one of the best draft classes in recent history, and I agree. With names like Larkin, Ekblad, Pastrnak, Ho-Sang, and Nylander, this class is full of future All-Stars. There is no shock that a name like Dal Colle isn’t getting much attention, especially with this group of players that he is aligned with. But there are multiple other players who are trying to craft their skill from this draft class. Guys like Jakub Vrana over in Washington, who has flipped time back-and-forth with Hershey and the Caps. Travis Sanheim is another example of a 1st-round pick from this draft who has yet to make the NHL. Haydn Fleury in Carolina is another guy. So MDC has some time before he is considered a bust, but he will need to step it up soon in order to get up to the NHL.
Many Islander Fans Feel Like This Is MDC’s Last Chance
Many say that if Michael Dal Colle does not get called up to the Islanders by the end of this season, he will be considered a bust. However,I say wait until next season, because with contracts ending for a few players, Dal Colle might get his shot.