The New York Islanders NHL Expansion Draft protection list came out and the Islanders opted to protect five defensemen and three forwards. What does that tell us about Garth Snow?
Depending on who you ask, the New York Islanders expansion draft protection list tells us one of the following things about Garth: “He’s overvalued his defensive core”, “What? Pelech? Why? How?”, *keyboard smashed into monitor violently*.
For the expansion draft New York Islanders GM Garth Snow has opted to protect five defensemen, three forwards and Thomas Greiss as his goaltender:
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That leaves 56 point player and constant Isles fan favorite (he says sarcastically) Josh Bailey as well as Brock Nelson, Ryan Strome, Casey Cizikas and Cal Clutterbuck as forwards to which Vegas can choose from.
On the defensive end, that leaves Calvin de Haan, Thomas Hickey, Scott Mayfield and Dennis Seidenberg free for Vegas.
Most of the names on this protected list either make sense or had to be there because of no-move clauses. But the five defensemen route threw most of us for a loop. Mainly because Calvin de Haan’s name wasn’t on the list.
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So What Does It Say?
If anything the protection list reveals that Nick Leddy and Travis Hamonic are untouchable by Vegas. Pulock and Pelech are the future of the Islanders defense. And that Calvin de Haan and Thomas Hickey are those he’s willing to take a chance on losing. At least in Garth’s eyes.
He overvalues this setup to such a degree that he’s ok with the fact that Josh Bailey is left for Vegas to protect. And depending on who you believe as rumors of deals with Vegas swirl, Bailey isn’t receiving extra protection with the Isles first going to Vegas.
With his current view of his defense, Garth is essentially let Josh Bailey and a first rounder go, and get nothing in return.
I know it’s easy to get on Josh Bailey’s case for a number of subpar seasons in the past. Like two seasons ago when he scored 32 points in 82 games. A far cry from the 56 he scored this season.
Say what you will about Bailey. “It was once”, “It won’t happen again”. But looking at the numbers Josh Bailey wasn’t just along for the ride on that first line with Tavares and Lee. He was a catalyst for a lot of its success.
If he’s actually going to be taken by Vegas, the Isles will have a hard time filling that void without a significant trade. A trade they’ve yet to pull off. And now they’ll have one fewer asset to get said trade done.