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Islanders: Pros and cons of trading for Kyle Palmieri

NEWARK, NEW JERSEY - JANUARY 14: Kyle Palmieri #21 of the New Jersey Devils looks on during warm ups before the home opening game against the Boston Bruins at Prudential Center on January 14, 2021 in Newark, New Jersey. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
NEWARK, NEW JERSEY - JANUARY 14: Kyle Palmieri #21 of the New Jersey Devils looks on during warm ups before the home opening game against the Boston Bruins at Prudential Center on January 14, 2021 in Newark, New Jersey. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
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NEWARK, NJ – FEBRUARY 4: Kyle Palmieri #21 of the New Jersey Devils celebrates scoring his goal in the third period of an NHL hockey game against the Montreal Canadiens on February 4, 2020 at the Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey. Montreal won 5-4 in a shootout, (Photo by Paul Bereswill/Getty Images)
NEWARK, NJ – FEBRUARY 4: Kyle Palmieri #21 of the New Jersey Devils celebrates scoring his goal in the third period of an NHL hockey game against the Montreal Canadiens on February 4, 2020 at the Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey. Montreal won 5-4 in a shootout, (Photo by Paul Bereswill/Getty Images)

Pros of Palmieri trade

  • Top-six winger
  • Consistent 20 goal scorer
  • Low cap hit
  • Knows Lou’s ways

With Anders Lee out, the Islanders desperately need help in their top six. While Palmieri isn’t a left-shot like Lee, he’s clearly a top-six winger. He’s averaged 17:35 of ice-time since arriving in New Jersey back in 2015-16. Lee has averaged 16:35 of ice-time in the same period.

Palmieri may not play the same way as Anders Lee does, but what we do know is that he’s a consistent goal scorer. Over the past five years, he’s scored no fewer than 24 goals in a season. He averages 0.363 goals per game since arriving in New Jersey, that’s a 30 goal pace over an 82 game year.

Of his 132 goals since 2015-19, 49 have come on the power play (37%). So not only is he good for goals, he’s good for goals on the special teams as well. Since that flurry of power-play goals immediately after their forced COVID break, the Islanders haven’t been able to get much going on the man-advantage. Having Palmieri out there instead of Matt Martin would be a huge upgrade.

Now add all the intangibles to the equation.

We know that ‘fit’ is a bit factor for Lou. He has to know that the player he brings in will fit in the room and not disrupt the delicate ecosystem that is the Islanders locker-room. Lou knows Palmieri, he may not have been the GM who traded for him, but he was still at the top of the Devils Hockey Ops department when he was acquired. He certainly had no issue bringing him then, and won’t likely have an issue bringing him in now.

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