Tavares Wants To Be An Islander!!!

Who saw this coming?
I'm not talking about the part where John Tavares says he wants to be taken first overall. That's a pretty obvious one. I'm not talking about the part where Tavares says he'd be happy if the Islanders drafted him. That's what you're supposed to say.
I'm talking about the way Tavares handled himself.
Clearly, this is a young man who can be the face of the New York Islanders. He can bring credibility to the franchise. He can give fans a reason to believe in the Islanders. And best of all, he wants the opportunity to do so.
The Rangers fans among us won't really understand this part, so I'll try my best to explain this as clearly as possible. There are plenty of reasons for players to want to join the Rangers. It's a visible franchise with deep pockets who plays in what might actually be the world's most famous arena. Compare that with the Islanders. They have only one beat writer following the team on the road. They can't spend big money because they lose $20 million a year, even while scraping along the salary floor. They play in a dump of an arena that might or might not be renovated; hell, they might not even be playing in New York in five years. Not a very easy sell, is it?
We all know the Islanders have trouble drawing free agents. Even when players come to the Island, it's usually in the form of a one-year deal, with the player showing little or no commitment to the team. Mark Streit was an exception to the rule, a big-name player who wanted to come here. Prior to his arrival, I can't recall a single free agent signing by the Islanders that even approached big-name status.
John Tavares can be that big name. Do you remember the last time the Islanders had a big name? You pretty much have to go back to the days of the dynasty. Pat LaFontaine is the last superstar the Islanders have had. Sure, Pierre Turgeon and Zigmund Palffy were great players on the Island, but their tenures were too short and didn't elevate the franchise's stature on their own. Tavares can do just that. He can give the Islanders the credibility they need to attract the free agents that might otherwise avoid the Islanders altogether.
This isn't a knock on Victor Hedman or Matt Duchene. Hedman has said many similar things about coming to the Islanders. However, it's different from Tavares going out of his way to assure the fans he wants to be an Islander. Tavares has been accused of not wanting to play for the Islanders. His game has been trashed by the Canadian media since the Islanders won the draft lottery. As a result of these media reports, fans across Long Island have been fearing the worst. For John Tavares to come out and address these rumors straight on by going directly to the fans... this is something Islanders fans have never seen before. Unless you've been an Islanders fan for years and been burned by your team countless times, you can't even imagine how much this means. 
This kid is a superstar in the making... and he's chosen us.
It's sort of unfair to say this, but if the Islanders don't draft John Tavares, the fans are going to be extremely disappointed. We're already falling hard for this kid, and with good reason. We're going to get a great player no matter how this draft plays out. But to get a great player who wants to be an Islander, who wants to lead our team to the promised land, is a completely unique and unprecedented proposition. I truly hope we get the chance to give something back to John Tavares for the hope he's given us.