Islanders forward lines: 3 suggestions as fans wait for a trade

Head coach Barry Trotz of the New York Islander (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
Head coach Barry Trotz of the New York Islander (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images) /
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New York Islanders
Matt Martin #17 and Jordan Eberle #7 of the New York Islanders. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images) /

3. Barry Trotz Special


Maybe Trotz isn’t a fan of my other two suggestions so I’ve tailor-made one just for him.

Trotz loves having a big tough winger up top with Barzal. Why not Matt Martin? I know it kind of ‘ruins’ the identity line, but Trotz pulled apart the Beau-Pageau-Wahlstrom line – the only one that was working offensively – for no good reason. So I know he’s okay with messing with a good thing.

Trotz clearly thinks that Martin is a good net-front player. Why else put him in that position on the power play? And in yesterday’s 2-1 loss the only Isles goal came from off a Barzal pass to Martin in front of the goal.

“What about those extra minutes?” You say? Well, Leo is playing between 12:09 and 14:20 as a ‘top-line winger’. Martin is averaging 11:43 over his last five. Can Martin deal with another 2:37 a night? I think so.

This setup also allows Trotz to keep that third line of Beau-Pageau-Wahlstrom together. Komarov goes to line two to continue playing important minutes in the side for some reason. And Ross Johnston steps in for Martin on the fourth line. If there was ever a like-for-like swap Johnston-for-Martin would be it. If Barry Trotz wants to use both in the same lineup this is the way to use it