New York Islanders: Debunking The Winnipeg Jets Trade Rumor

By Matt O'Leary
Nikolaj Ehlers #27 of the Winnipeg Jets (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)
Nikolaj Ehlers #27 of the Winnipeg Jets (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images) /

While the New York Islanders and Winnipeg Jets would be good trading partners, this trade rumor makes no sense for the Islanders.

One game. We made it one game before a terrible New York Islanders trade rumor was started. Shug McSween wrote an article stating that the Islanders and Jets are in talks to complete a trade.

That isn’t the crazy part. The Islanders just had one of their prospects ask for a trade and the Jets are a team that needs help defensively due to the uncertain future of Dustin Byfuglien. The Isles have defenseman to give and could use an upgrade at forward.

The trade package is the part that doesn’t make sense

This is an insane ask from Winnipeg in a deal for Nikolaj Ehlers. Ehlers, who is 23 years old and coming off three straight 20 goal seasons is a solid player, and certainly an upgrade to the Islanders top-six, but this is a clear overpay.

Ehlers has six more years under contract at $6 million AAV. Yes, having someone who can give you 60 points a season and 25 goals is something you want to add if you’re Lou Lamoriello but if you have to give up your 24-year-old number one defenseman you hang up the phone.

The Islanders are deep on defense, but you can’t give up on your number one defenseman you’re cutting off your nose to spite your face. If you wanted to swap Pulock out for Scott Mayfield, yeah I think that’s a little bit more reasonable for the Islanders to pay.

If the Jets would prefer a prospect, maybe you add Bode Wilde in instead of Ryan Pulock and I would still do it. Pulock, Noah Dobson and Devon Toews are the three defensemen that the Isles can’t afford to lose. Any other d-man, can and should be fair game in a trade package.

Pulock led the way last year for Islanders defensemen in expected goals for with a 55.3. The next closest was Nick Leddy with 49.99. If you are trying to improve your offense, moving on from Ryan Pulock doesn’t help the cause.

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Yes, Lou Lamoriello should explore a trade with the Winnipeg Jets or any other team that has a top-six forward to spend, but it has to be a package within reason, this isn’t.