New York Islanders Podcast: John Tavares Is Gone

NEW YORK, NY - JANUARY 16: John Tavares
NEW YORK, NY - JANUARY 16: John Tavares /

The unthinkable has happened. John Tavares is no longer with the New York Islanders. As a free agent, he decided to join the Toronto Maple Leafs.

It’s the worst thing that could happen to the New York Islanders. After weeks of positivity, with the addition of Lou Lamoriello, the removal of Garth Snow and Doug Weight, and then the addition of Barry Trotz. It was all looking up for the Islanders.

Until the most Islanders thing happened: their star player decided to walk and join another team. After nine seasons with the New York Islanders John Tavares decided to join up with his hometown team, the Toronto Maple Leafs.

Tavares left money and term on the table to be able to help Toronto lift the cup for the first time since 1967.

More importantly, he left a fanbase in shambles. Because the talisman of the franchise got up an left. And now the Islanders have to pick up the pieces and figure out what to do next.

The Questions

As Eyes on Isles co-experts Matt and Mitch try to work through what happened on July 1 a few questions come to mind:

  • What do the New York Islanders do now? Along with a starting goalie and a top-four defenseman, the Islanders now have to add a second line center to their shopping list. How can they possibly address all three in one offseason?
  • What does that mean for the Islanders as a franchise? With all the positivity built up over the last few weeks with Lou Lamoriello taking over, the Islanders were starting to turn some head around the league. In a positive way for once. Does that take a step back now that the franchises star player left?
  • What does this mean for Tavares? Has he gone completely ‘heel’ on us? Is there anything the New York Islanders could have done to persuade him during this? Or was Toronto the one and only destination?

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