Islanders: Five key players that need to step up vs Florida Panthers

By Matt Hawkins
Nick Leddy #2 of the New York Islanders (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
Nick Leddy #2 of the New York Islanders (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images) /
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New York Islanders
Jean-Gabriel Pageau #44 of the New York Islanders (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images) /

J-G Pageau. 106. Center. New York Islanders. 2. Scouting Report. Pick Analysis

Acquired from the Ottawa Senators this past February 24th for a conditional 2020 first-round pick (becomes a 2021 first-rounder if the pick is in the top-three), 2020 second-round pick, and conditional 2022 third-round pick (Sens only get the pick if the Isles win the 2020 Stanley Cup), J-G Pageau may be the missing piece the Isles needed to get to the next level.

He’s finally a long-term solution for the team’s third-line center, and a really good one at that, as he put up top-six numbers this season with 26 goals and 42 points in 67 games between the Isles and Sens.

General Manager Lou Lamoriello wasted no time signing Pageau to a six-year, $30 million ($5 million AAV) extension after trading for him. Pageau adds stability and depth to the entire Isles’ lineup as he allows Barry Trotz to roll out four solid lines.

Before the acquisition of Pageau, the Isles’ third-line center roll was a revolving door played by the likes of Derick Brassard, Josh Bailey, Otto Koivula, and even Leo Komarov or Tom Kuhnhackl.

Pageau gives the Isles much needed secondary scoring outside their top-six forward group and if he can produce even with Brassard/ Bailey and Michael Dal Colle on his wings the Isles will be in good shape against the Panthers.

He’ll be a key part of the team’s success for the next six years as he plays in every situation and is one of the best faceoff men in the NHL winning 53.5% of his draws this season.