We’re around nineteen hours from the NHL trade deadline. The New York Islanders have already made one move. Here’s hoping there’s some more action to come.
Garth Snow can’t sneeze these days without hearing about how he didn’t sneeze well enough from the New York Islanders‘ fan base. #IslesTwitter has been an entertaining, depressing, hysterical, inspiring, and lately, a numb place.
After yet another heartbreaking loss, the Islanders still remain very much in the Eastern Conference postseason picture. The Isles currently sit in the eighth and final wild-card spot, just a point ahead of the Carolina Hurricanes and two above the everything-must-go New York Rags…er, Rangers.
In a quick side note, the haul that the Rangers got in return for Rick Nash was tremendous. The Blueshirts are retaining half of Nash’s remaining salary, but that’s still an unbelievable score for those guys across the East River.
New York Islanders can make a big splash if they want to
If New York Islanders’ GM Garth Snow could bob-and-weave his way into serious negotiations for a big piece before the trade deadline, he could also put this Islanders team in the position to make some serious waves this year and deep into the future.
Making a move for a franchise-altering player like Erik Karlsson, while it would not be cheap, would propel this franchise well past win-now status. They would be set to win for years. Think about the ramifications of a deal for a superstar like Karlsson.
Bringing him here would cost multiple high draft picks, probably multiple, partially-developed top-prospects, and another NHL-ready prospect. That’s quite a price to pay for a player that could walk away in free agency after next season.
New York Islanders would be greatly improved
More from Eyes On Isles
- Islanders key to success: Load management with goalies
- Islanders Zdeno Chara trending in the right direction
- Islanders: Semyon Varlamov Deserves Benefit of the Doubt
- Islanders Ilya Sorokin becoming number one goalie
- Islanders Zach Parise Was Quiet in Return to Minnesota
The boost that gaining a player like Karlsson would bring to the New York Islanders couldn’t simply be quantified in wins and losses.
The talent-level, team morale, and trajectory of this team would be considerably heightened.
If Karlsson were to see that type of environment, in addition to the over-abundance of talent that’s here and will be for years to come, how would he not want to be a part of that?
Islanders could make it work
With the projected increases in the NHL salary cap (could be as high as $85 million next season and $95 million the next), plus the team-friendly deals that Josh Bailey, Adam Pelech, and Scott Mayfield just signed, as well as the cost-efficiency of the talented young core of this team (Anthony Beauvillier, Ryan Pulock, etc.), the money will be there.
If Garth Snow wants to keep his job, which may seem like an impossibility at this point, he conceivably could. If he were to bring in a big name like Karlsson (or any available top-two defenseman, for that matter), and the Islanders were to succeed this year, we could be looking at another few (gulp) years of Garth Snow.
If he can pull all of the right strings and make something of this season, and then some, that would almost be tolerable.