Billy Jaffe's departure from the Islanders' TV booth - a decision several people familiar with the move said was generated by the team, not MSG - came as just as much of a surprise to his partner as to most of the rest of us.

Rose said before Thursday's Cardinals-Mets game at Citi Field that he did not know the reasons for the move and declined to speculate. But he did say this about Jaffe:

"I've had a wonderful four years working with him. He's one of the rising analysts in the sport. He's recognized nationally. He's got a tremendous future. He's going to do great and I just wish him all the best and we'll always be friends and hopefully he'll bounce right up."

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Any thoughts on possible successors?

"I think there are obvious guys," Rose said. "Butchie [Goring] has been with us and Denis Potvin's name floats around because he's available. I don't know which way that will go, either. But for Billy, I'm sure everything will work out great."