The New York Islanders had an eventful trade deadline this year. Not only did the Islanders acquire a top target, but they showed that the team is well-perceived, both internally and externally.
Perhaps the New York Islanders dismal showing on their most recent Western Conference road trip was not so bad after all. Yes, the Isles lost all four games and only scored a total of two goals; however, Lou also got the final confirmation he needed to try to acquire a goal-scorer.
The timing worked out well because Lou was able to get that goal-scorer less than a week later at the trade deadline.
In trading for Jean-Gabriel Pageau, General Manager Lou Lamoriello had to pay a hefty price by surrendering a first-round and second-round draft pick (I am going to assume the team keeps the conditional third-round pick). Nonetheless, the player Lou acquired might just be worth the price.
Upon joining the Islanders, Jean-Gabriel Pageau immediately became the team’s leading goal-scorer. His 25 goals in 2019-20 tops the 23 goals scored by previous Islander scoring-leader Brock Nelson. Sure this is just Pageau’s first 20-goal season; however, he played on an awful Ottawa Senators team the last two seasons and he had never really been a focal point of the team’s offense prior to that.
Things should be a bit different on the Islanders. Out of necessity, Pageau is expected to be a significant offensive contributor, including on power plays. Pageau already scored his first goal with the Islanders during his debut Tuesday night versus the Rangers. Hopefully, this will be the first of many.
The other area where Pageau will help the Islanders is on faceoffs. The Isles rank in the bottom half of the league with a 49.8 Faceoff Win Percentage (FWP%). Pageau should be able to help the team get over the 50 FWP% mark, as he possesses a 53.5 FWP% on the season. In his debut, Pageau was outstanding on faceoffs, winning 10 out of 14 (71.4%).