New York Islanders Dealing With Delusional Joe Sakic

Dec 7, 2015; Denver, CO, USA; Colorado Avalanche general manager Joe Sakic fans waves to the crowd before the game against the Minnesota Wild at Pepsi Center. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports
Dec 7, 2015; Denver, CO, USA; Colorado Avalanche general manager Joe Sakic fans waves to the crowd before the game against the Minnesota Wild at Pepsi Center. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports /

New York Islanders fans have been hoping for some time to land coveted center Matt Duchene from the Colorado Avalanche. Too bad Joe Sakic is the team’s GM, and he’s as stubborn and as foolish as a bull.

The New York Islanders have been seemingly after Colorado Avalanche center Matt Duchene forever. Maybe not forever but at least since the last trade deadline when it was well known that the 26-year-old was on the trade block.

Speaking to Adrian Deter of BSN Denver on February 27th, 2017, just days before the trade deadline Duchene had the following to say about his current predicament:

"“It’s hard to look past three days right now,” Duchene said. “I just can’t really look past that because I don’t know where I’m going to be.”"

The Avalanche were shopping their third overall pick from 2009. A player that has accumulated 418 points in 572 games since. Only John Tavares has more points that Duchene in their draft class.

But as the Colorado Avalanche were free-falling into the abyss of the 2016-17 NHL season GM Joe Sakic decided that he needed to ship Duchene -and captain Gabriel Landeskog – for maximum assets.

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The Ask

Back at the start of 2017 TSN’s Darren Dreger reported that Sakic was looking for a top level D-man, a top level prospect and more. For either Duchene of Landeskog. And the reaction then was negative.

Just after that on-air reports from Nik Kypreos indicated that Sakic was looking for Mikhail Sergachev, Alex Galchenyuk, and the Habs first round pick.

The rumors never subsided around Duchene, but neither did the price. And that’s what’s mind numbing about this entire situation. Faced with a market that wouldn’t pay what he was asking for Sakic decided to simply not deal.

And that’s fine in one regard. But generally, the laws of economics dictate that when a good is priced too high for the demand the price has to fall.

He (Sakic) controls the asset (Duchene) until the expiration of the player’s contract. He can decide whether to sell or not. But that’s not really working for him now, is it?

What Is He Doing Exactly?

Matt Duchene is still on his roster. As is Gabriel Landeskog for that fact. And at this point, Sakic hasn’t done anything to address his teams historically terrible season in 2016-17.

Sure, he added the fourth overall pick to his organization. But we can all agree that Cale Makar won’t be the singular answer to Colorado’s issues going into 2017-18. But that’s it. That’s all that Joe Sakic has done to try and get the Avalanche back to the playoffs or, dare I say, cup contention.

Playing hardball isn’t working for Joe. Montréal moved Sergachev to a GM that was willing to deal. The Habs sent him to Tampa along with a conditional second-round pick in 2018 for Jonathan Drouin and a conditional sixth round pick.

The Islanders were able to send Travis Hamonic to the Flames for a first and two second round picks. Which in the hands of Garth Snow is two first round picks really.

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That’s two key defensemen that the Avalanche were looking at or at least offered, gone. Both in reasonable trades based on their valuations.

I know that Sakic things he holds all the cards and can thus wait it out. But the longer he goes the more desperate he becomes to trade Duchene, who, at the end of his deal will be an unrestricted free agent. And do we think Duchene stays there when the time comes?

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This is Joe Sakic’s window to move Matt Duchene. Stalling too long dilutes all of his trade value. Trading him now is imperative. Hamonic is gone now, so the Avalanche are seeing their options dwindle. And Sakic has only but himself to blame.