Before sitting out 60 percent of the 2017-18 NHL season Calvin de Haan was having a career year. With his 12 points in 33 games, de Haan was on pace for 30 points. His previous high was 25 in 2016-17.
Per Corsica. Hockey, de Haan was generating 1.15 points per 60, second amongst New York Islanders defenseman. He was also second on the team with a 1.05 in expected goals +/- with a 1.05. de Haan was performing well before the Islanders lost him to a shoulder injury.
With de Haan in the lineup, the Islanders were still doing relatively well. With an 18-12-3 record by December 17th 2017, they sat just two points out of second place in the division. The Islanders weren’t great, but they were still competitive.
It’s not to say that losing Calvin de Haan is what doomed the Islanders season, but with de Haan, in the lineup, the Islanders were still in it.
Lets just quickly assume the Islanders don’t keep him. Who do they bring in instead? Do they hope that one of the young kids can step up and take his place? Does Sebastian Aho start in the top four? Maybe Devon Toews next to Adam Pelech on the second pairing?
Outside of chasing John Carlson, Calvin de Haan might be the best fit for the Islanders. And he’s already on the roster.
Keeping de Haan might not come cheaply. Knowing he can go to free agency that has few defensive options plays in de Haan’s favor. But he’s the best option for the Islanders. So paying him $4.5 million over say four to five years might be the best option.