Islanders Could Keep Thomas Greiss And Trade Semyon Varlamov
By Matt O'Leary
We know Ilya Sorokin will be a part of this team Islanders team next year, there’s a chance that Thomas Greiss stays and Semyon Varlamov goes.
The common thought is the New York Islanders will run with Ilya Sorokin and Semyon Varlamov in 2020-2021. It makes sense, they’re the only two goalies under contract for next year, but one NHL insider thinks there may be another alternative.
In Elliotte Friedman’s 31 thoughts, he pondered the idea of the Islanders keeping Greiss and moving on from Varlamov. That would certainly be a little tricky to pull off.
Thomas Greiss is on an expiring contract and is set to become a UFA. Would he sign a Jaro Halak like deal to keep him around for $2.25 million? With how strange the goalie market is, I could see him getting anywhere between $2 million and $5 million AAV next year.
Yes, that’s a wide range but did anyone expect Semyon Varlamov to sign for $5 million last year, or Jordan Binnigton to sign for $4.4 million AAV? The point is goalie contracts are unpredictable and maybe Greiss can sign for under $3 million.
If that’s the case, the Islanders would be forced to move Semyon Varlamov. A buyout doesn’t really make sense for him. It would cost the Islanders $2.55 million against the cap next year to do that.
So would he be willing to move his No Trade Clause? I suppose if he’s going to a team that needs a starting goalie he may. All these teams, as of right now before free agency, theoretically could be in the market for a goalie: Vancouver, Chicago, Edmonton, Buffalo, Carolina, Calgary, Detroit, Ottawa, and maybe New Jersey.
For those nine teams, it depends on what they do with their own pending UFA’s and free agency but one of them could theoretically bite on Semyon Varlamov.
Moving on from Varly would save the Islanders $5 million and if you get to sign Greiss for $2.5 million let’s say, that’s an extra $2.5 million in a cap crunch. If the Islanders are able to get a taker on Varlamov and he’s willing to waive his NTC, great I’m all for it.
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I wouldn’t bet the farm on this happening but as Elliotte Friedman mentioned the Isles are in a cap crunch and every penny counts. Lou Lamoriello is going to have to get creative this offseason.