New York Islanders Matt Duchene Trade Outsiders (Opinion)

NEW YORK, NY - FEBRUARY 12: Matt Duchene
NEW YORK, NY - FEBRUARY 12: Matt Duchene /

New York Islanders pursuit of Colorado Avalanche’s Matt Duchene had a breath of hope before the king of NHL insiders essentially killed it. Instead, linking Duchene to the Columbus Blue Jackets.

When Matt Duchene didn’t show up to the Colorado Avalanche’s game New York Islanders fans collectively said: “word?!” and then thought of the possibilities. Can we make a run at him? What will it finally take to pry him from Denver…or Toronto, wherever he is right now.

And then Sportsnet’s Elliotte Freidman put down his thoughts down on “paper”. And it all just melted away for me. In case you haven’t seen it this is what Freidman had to say on the subject with Duchene going to Columbus. Columbus!

"“It seems certain Colorado could make a deal with Columbus very quickly. The Blue Jackets have been in this for a while, and it is believed they thought they were close to getting Duchene a couple of times. Sakic knows what Columbus is willing to offer, but they don’t like it enough.”"

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Avalanche And Blue Jackets Chicken

It would be terrible not to get Matt Duchene. But a conference rival? We’ve already gone over that disappointment when Pittsburgh was linked to Duchene. Duchene going to Pittsburgh over Columbus wouldn’t be any worse. They’re both terrible options for the Islanders.

But this combined with the Seravalli report where the Islanders aren’t linked is nails in the coffin to Duchene coming to New York Islanders. In my eyes, it’s clear that the Islanders are out of the discussion. And the game of chicken is between the Avalanche and the Blue Jackets.

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The potential still exists that the Islanders swoop in at the 11th hour to bring in Duchene to Brooklyn. But it’s growing unlikely, at least in my confidence plagued existence.

Is not getting Duchene so bad?

It’s not optimal. It makes the Islanders place a lot of faith in Mathew Barzal. A situation that hasn’t gone well just a season ago. They thought they had an NHL ready player who could step in and play down the middle. After a two game stint, they found out they were wrong.

It left the Islanders without P.A. Parenteau and with Ryan Strome having to take a spot down the middle. A plan that worked out terribly. Ryan Strome had an OK season, but he didn’t last at center or as an Islander.

With Duchene, the Islanders would insulate themselves from some of the risks of starting Mathew Barzal in such a big position. They could start Barzal at third line center. He could face easier matchups with sheltered ice time and grow into his future role with the team. They’d also have one heck of a spine: Tavares, Duchene, Barzal, Cizikas. Me likey.

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But I’ll have to move past that because it seems that the Isles might have just moved on from Duchene if their exclusion in reports is an indicator. And so should I.