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New York Islanders Making The Case To Trade Thomas Hickey

NEW YORK, NY - JANUARY 16: Thomas Hickey #14 of the New York Islanders reacts after a goal by Kyle Palmieri #21 of the New Jersey Devils in the first period during their game at Barclays Center on January 16, 2018 in the Brooklyn borough of New York City. (Photo by Abbie Parr/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - JANUARY 16: Thomas Hickey #14 of the New York Islanders reacts after a goal by Kyle Palmieri #21 of the New Jersey Devils in the first period during their game at Barclays Center on January 16, 2018 in the Brooklyn borough of New York City. (Photo by Abbie Parr/Getty Images)
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The New York Islanders need help defensively. So why trade Thomas Hickey? If you approach trades and team building pragmatically it makes sense to leverage Hickey’s worth in the market.

If the trade market is going to yield a good return for New York Islanders defenseman Thomas Hickey, shouldn’t the Isles pull the trigger? Wouldn’t it be in their best interest to leverage whatever advantage they can get?

I’ll be honest, this isn’t my idea. I owe this to @Habermetrics on twitter. His inspiration was Nick Holden being traded from the New York Rangers for Rob O’Gara and a 2018 third-round pick.

That’s Nick Holden, who’s a 22-35 point player averaging 19:00 minutes of ice-time for a third-round pick in next year’s draft and an ok defensive prospect.

Why Trade Hickey?

As Carey points out, Hickey is a pending UFA with a three year $6.6 million deal set to expire. He’s going to demand an increase. And there’s no way to think that Hickey is worth it.

More from Eyes On Isles

At 29-years-old, averaging 21 points a year and, when the team is 100% healthy is often a healthy scratch. With young players like Scott Mayfield, Sebastian Aho, Ryan Pulock and even Devon Toews now on the roster or on the way up, there’s no reason to spend money on Hickey.

Listen, Thomas Hickey isn’t anything more than a third pairing defenseman. And third pairing defenseman shouldn’t be making $2.5 million or more. I understand that the Islanders brass like Hickey, but that’s not a good reason to keep a player. Not in this cutthroat industry.

By that same token Hickey, nor any player, should walk away for free.

It’s not that Hickey is bad. He’s not great, either. But he’s not bad. For the role he plays, he’s valuable. Again, credit to Habermetrics for pulling this data comparing Hickey to Holden.

Trade? No Trade? Maybe Later…

Should the Islanders trade Hickey now before the trade deadline? Now might be too early. Again, the Islanders need any abled body defenseman they can get their hands on at the moment.

If the Islanders can get a third and a prospect for Hickey before the draft then that’s the best time to strike. But if the feeling is that the market for defensemen might be too saturated by June then maybe making the trade now for peak value is a good idea.

Next: Johnston Just What Isles Needed

The pragmatist would say to make the trade now while the iron is hot. The important question is what does Garth say? Trade now, or wait and see?

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