With Cal Clutterbuck out indefinitely this season, the New York Islanders have recalled Andrew Ladd from the Bridgeport Sound Tigers. Heres’s some positives to the move.
After taking Patrice Bergeron‘s skate to the wrist, New York Islanders forward Cal Clutterbuck is out indefinitely following surgery to repair a tendon in his wrist. With Clutterbuck out, the Islanders brought back Andrew Ladd.
Bringing back Ladd hasn’t filled the fan base with a lot of optimism. It’s understandable. He’s been far from the player that Garth Snow thought he was signing to that seven-year $38.5 million deal a few years back. He’s also not been outstanding at the AHL level. He’s been fine, nothing more.
But bringing in Ladd has some positives, here’s three.
1. More upside then what we have
I’m sure all of them are great teammates and are all working very hard but all four players have combined for ten points in 68 games. That’s just not good enough to put on the third line.
Andrew Ladd, when healthy can provide an injection of offense that the Isles could use on line three. He won’t go on some 60 point scoring pace, but he’ll be better than the players that have been rotating in and out of third-line duties.
2. Can score goals
Andrew Ladd has goal-scoring potential. He’s scored 20+ goals in at least six different seasons. His most recent 20+ goal season was his first year with the Islanders in 2016-17 with 23 goals.
Again, when healthy, Andrew Ladd can be an effective goal scorer. He’s no longer a top-six forward. But he could do a solid job in a role where he’s on the third line as depth goal-scorer.
The obvious question is why should we believe that we’re getting an Andrew Ladd who can bring more upside and goals to the team?
3. Something to prove
Andrew Ladd has been a non-factor for the Islanders since the Islanders have become this top-tier team in the Lou Lamoriello era. That has to bother him to no end. He’ll be motivated to turn that around with this opportunity.
Ladd doesn’t have a guaranteed roster spot. You know he wants one. He’s going to have to earn it. And the only way he does that is by showing Lou Lamoriello and Barry Trotz that he can provide them something they don’t already have and by chipping in with some goals.
With nine points in 19 games at the AHL level, Andrew Ladd hasn’t been “torching” the lower league, but he’s been playing well enough to deserve the call-up. If he wants to stay he’ll have to earn it. That should be enough motivation for us to see the best version of Ladd in a while.