New York Islanders Need To Aggressively Target Erik Karlsson

TAMPA, FL - JANUARY 27: Erik Karlsson
TAMPA, FL - JANUARY 27: Erik Karlsson

In other news water is wet. I get it. Saying the New York Islanders need to target this generation Nicklas Lidstrom is obvious. But it’s still important to state out loud.

Erik Karlsson was drafted 15th overall in the 2008 NHL Entry Draft, six spots after the New York Islanders selected Josh Bailey. It’s easy to say now that 13 teams (the Kings drafted twice before Karlsson was taken) absolutely regret not taking him.

Since entering the league in 2009-2010 Erik Karlsson has played 627 games and scored 518 points. He’s lead the league in scoring for a defenseman on four different occasions. And has been voted to be the best at his position twice (and a finalist another two times).

Erik Karlsson is a generational defensive talent. The Islanders lost their star player. They


to go and acquire this one.

Teams Are Able To Talk

After the Ottawa Senators made a contract offer to their star defenseman, it has now been reported that teams are able to speak with Erik Karlsson about an extension. Remember, Karlsson still has a year left on his contract with the Ottawa Senators.

The Islanders are obviously linked. They have the money, the need, and the desire to acquire Erik Karlsson.

With the loss of John Tavares, the Islanders have a ton of cap space. At the moment Cap Friendly has the Isles cap space at $23.859 million. If Karlsson wants a Doughty deal (at an $11 million AAV), the Islanders have space.

Heck, they even have space to take on Bobby Ryan’s $7.25 million deal for the next four seasons. On this year’s cap that would still leave the Isles with $10.109 million in cap space to play with.

One of the Islanders major needs is defense. Adding the best player at that position would immediately reshape the Isles backend.

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Next: Top 5 Isles Rookie Performances Ever

This is the Islanders chance to bring back the positive momentum they had been building before John Tavares decided he wanted to pay for the Maple Leafs. The Islanders have to be all in on Erik Karlsson.