Editorials

Islanders: 3 potential top line trade targets

Johnny Gaudreau #13 of the Calgary Flames (Photo by Derek Leung/Getty Images)
Johnny Gaudreau #13 of the Calgary Flames (Photo by Derek Leung/Getty Images) /
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new york islanders
Nikolaj Ehlers #27 of the Winnipeg Jets (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images) /

Nikolaj Ehlers | Winnipeg Jets

He’s the perfect mid-point between the two players I’ve already mentioned. He’s got the shiftiness and speed of a Johnny Gaudreau with a bit more size and strength. He hasn’t yet hit the same heights as Gaudreau, but he’s already hit the 60 point plateau twice in his young career.

He’s also younger than both. Nikolaj Ehlers just turned 24 years old in February. He’s also signed to a long-term deal that carries a $6 million AAV through the 2024-25 NHL season.

The left-shot forward is comfortable on both the left and the right side of the ice. But slotting him on the left side of Barzal (with Eberle on the right) seems like the best use of his talents.

Consider that Ehlers put up 58 points in 71 games last year (a pace of 70 points) while playing alongside Blake Wheeler and Jack Roslovic. Wheeler is a great player so you know that Ehlers can get it done with quality players around him.

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Is He Available?

Maybe not. Although it seems that Jets GM Kevin Cheveldayoff was shopping the winger as early as August of 2019.

The Winnipeg Jets certainly need defenders and the Islanders have more than enough defenders to make a deal work. But it’s not like Winnipeg is looking to move Ehlers per se. He had a down year in 2018-19 but he’s clearly bounced back this season.

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