Trade Away Some Loose Ends
The Islanders have four defensemen under contract for next season: Nick Leddy, Johnny Boychuk, Scott Mayfield, and Adam Pelech. Two of those players are worse than the other two. That’s right. Mayfield and Pelech cannot be everyday players on the Islanders if this team wants to go far next season.
Ryan Pulock, Calvin de Haan, Thomas Hickey, and Brandon Davidson are not under contract for next season, and if the Islanders were to add another defenseman to the team (e.g. Justin Faulk), trades will need to be made.
Mayfield and Pelech have team-friendly deals and are serviceable players, but the Islanders need to shake things up. Trading both of these players for mid-round draft picks would enable the Islanders to not just re-sign more important players, but also add in free agency and through trades.
Garth Snow does not like to give up on his players and be proven wrong, so this will not happen if Snow is the general manager of the Islanders this offseason. However, trading Pelech and Mayfield would be the right thing to do and it would give the Islanders some much-need, long-term roster flexibility.