The Philadelphia Flyers placed defenseman Shayne Gostibehere on waivers today. And it’s got New York Islanders fans all abuzz about bringing him in. It’s almost as if fans are overreacting to a few tough losses and are grasping at straws to try and improve the club.
I get it. The loss of Lee for the season, Leo Komarov, Ross Johnston, and Matt Martin all lining up on the left side, and losing back-to-back games to the Penguins by a combined score of 8-4 isn’t good.
But making this type of impulsive acquisition won’t help either.
The New York Islanders should not acquire Shayne Gostisbehere from Philadelphia Flyers
If you just look at Shayne Gostisbhere’s stat sheet you can see why Islanders fans want to add him for free through the waiver wire. In his rookie year, the 2012 third-round pick put up an incredible 17 goals and 49 points. Two years later he scored 13 goals and 65 points. Adding that to the Islanders back end could be a huge addition.
But since that 65 point year in 2017-18 Gostisbehere has seen his production steadily decrease. This year, he has five goals and eleven points in 25 games. That’s a pace of 36 points over a full 82 game season.
We know that Gostiebehere isn’t a strong defensive player, his strength is his offensive play. But even his offensive play has struggled over the last three seasons. As I wrote on Twitter, Gostisbehere’s underlying offensive numbers have been, well, not good over the past three years:
Why go out and get a player who isn’t particularly good at the one thing he’s supposed to be particularly good at?
Not to mention the fact that Gostisbehere carries a $4.5 million cap not only this season, not only through next year but through the 2022-23 season. That’s a lot of cap to add to a team that’s already stretched thin.
Adding Gostisbehere also does nothing to address the Islanders pressing need for a top-six forward.
Again, the Isles had Leo Komarov, Ross Johnston, and Matt Martin dressed in the same lineup last night. Not to play on the same bottom-six line. All three took up three-quarters of the Isles LW depth chart on the night. Leo was on line one, Johnston on line three, and Matt Martin was on line four and played net-front on the power play.
Sure, Martin scored a power-play goal, but there’s a reason he’s only scored two since 2013.
Bringing in Gostisbehere would not help the Isles defensively, he isn’t particularly good offensively right now, and he would block the addition of a much-needed top-six forward. I understand things aren’t going well right now, but this type of move would certainly make things worse.