New York Islanders Considered Favorites For Artemi Panarin (Rumor)
According to Bob McKenzie of TSN Artemi Panarin and Sergei Bobrovsky are not a package deal and the New York Islanders are the favorites to land Panarin.
As free agency is now just a mere 15 hours away, the rumors are heating up even more so. Bob McKenzie, a reputable hockey insider, had some major news in terms of the Sergei Bobrovsky and Artemi Panarin sweepstakes.
According to McKenzie Florida is the favorite to land Bobrovsky while the New York Islanders are the favorites for Panarin.
Obviously, nothing is set in stone and a lot can change in the next few hours but this is huge for the Islanders. First of all, they are potentially landing a soon to be 28-year-old who is coming off an 87 point season.
Since Panarin has come into the league only seven players have had more points than him over that span. The guy is a legit difference maker and an impactful piece that the Isles desperately need.
The next big piece is that Panarin and Bobrovsky aren’t a set. That’s been a rumor for a long time now which means the Islanders can look for a cheaper option at the goalie position.
Would they loop back to Robin Lehner? If for whatever reason there is a change of heart and his asking price comes down perhaps, but McKenzie also goes on to say that the Isles would be interested in Semyon Varlamov.
Varlamov is 31-year-old and coming off a poor season in Colorado. He had a .909 save percentage and a 2.87 goals against average. Over the course of his career though he’s put up solid numbers with a .916 save percentage and a 2.68 goals against average.
He can likely be a good stop gap until Ilya Sorokin comes over. As Arthur Staple mentioned on Twitter, he would be cheap and he’s tight with Sorokin.
Tomorrow is set to be one hectic day. As of now, you should probably expect to lose Anders Lee and Robin Lehner with potentially adding the best free agent available.