Philadelphia – – The Islanders beat the Flyers in a rookie game. The results aren’t that important. Mitchell Vande Sompel scored the OT game-winner but that was just icing on the cake of an already solid night.
“It was a bit sloppy. It was our first high intensity game. Everything’s going to happen at a fast pace. In the first period, you’re just kind of feeling it out and then as we got going we got better,” said Vande Sompel.
Going into the game the 5-8, 196-pound defenseman had a lot to prove. He’s Memorial Cup champion (2015 with Oshawa) but his slate has been wiped clean.
“We know a bunch of their guys from the OHL and from the international stage. They had a good team but I thought our effort was awesome,” he added.
Every moment he spends with the Islanders will help him in his development. He knows it and isn’t going to take a second of it for granted. His GM Garth Snow was in attendance and had to like what he saw out of the
“Each day you want to come in and do your best, work as hard as you can and show what you have,” Vande Sompel stated.
He credited perseverance, hard work and determination for the effort. This sums up the young blueliner’s game to a tee. He was great on the backcheck last night. His skating is pro quality and so is his shot. He’s strong on the penalty kill as well. He will be a terrific player for Bridgeport this season and has a real chance of being an NHLer down the road.
Vande Sompel is going to work ridiculously hard to prove that he belongs. When he’s out on the ice you forget about his size because he’s strong. He knows where to go on the ice and finds the open spaces on offense.
I love his puck moving, he can quarterback a power play, he’s just the kind of player who you can tell will succeed. A few years ago, injuries caused some to question his ability. Now it doesn’t matter that he was drafted in the third round because he’s in the pool with everybody else.