The New York Islanders have a big problem in net that must be solved. There are few options out there, but the Islanders should be targeting the hidden gem on the market: Aaron Dell.
It is not a surprise that the New York Islanders have given up a League-high 126 goals this season, averaging 3.5 goals against per game. This statistic is concerning, to say the least, partially because the Islanders are wasting one of the NHL’s best offenses with terrible goaltending.
Neither Thomas Greiss and Jaroslav Halak can be trusted on a nightly basis, and this has shown. Doug Weight selects a starter on a seemingly arbitrary basis which has led to both goalies not being able to get into a rhythm.
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While the Islanders atrocious defense is partially at fault, something must be done to address the goaltending issue. There is a shark in the water in the goaltending sweepstakes, and the Islanders should be looking to make a splash and acquire the big fish. The Islanders should trade for Aaron Dell.
The Sharks Would Love to Trade Dell
The San Jose Sharks have an elite goaltender in Martin Jones locked up long term, and the team also will have salary cap issues coming up this offseason.
Backup netminder Aaron Dell is an unrestricted free agent this offseason, and given the history of good backup goalies hitting the open market (e.g. James Reimer, Scott Darling), Dell will get a big contract from another team.
Instead of losing this valuable asset for nothing, the Sharks should look to trade him to help out their forward unit. The Sharks have been adamant against trading top prospects and picks for reinforcements at the deadline, so this will provide them an opportunity to improve a position of weakness.
The Sharks would be more than willing to trade Dell, so the ball is in Garth Snow’s court to make a move.
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Why the Islanders Should Trade for Dell
Thomas Greiss and Jaroslav Halak will not get the Islanders anywhere this season. Something must be done before it is too late, and Aaron Dell is the perfect savior for the Islanders.
Dell has a .935 save percentage and a 1.94 goals against average in 13 games played. He also is 7-3-1 this season and would prove to be a very valuable asset for the Islanders if he kept that up.
The Islanders have young forwards that would be a perfect centerpiece in a trade and they could include one of Calgary’s second round picks as icing on the cake that would get this deal done.
This trade would give the Islanders their starting goaltender, and provide them little long-term risk. They could sign Dell to a bridge deal if he plays well to give the Isles goaltending prospects more time or trade his rights to another team before free agency to recoup some assets.
Dell would give the Islanders stable goaltending on a nightly basis, which is smoothies fans have wanted all season. This trade would be perfect for the Islanders, so let’s hope it gets done.