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Islanders: Looking at success rate of big trade deadline acquisitions

UNIONDALE, NEW YORK - APRIL 09: Kyle Palmieri #21 and Travis Zajac #14 of the New York Islanders skates against the New York Rangers at Nassau Coliseum on April 09, 2021 in Uniondale, New York. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
UNIONDALE, NEW YORK - APRIL 09: Kyle Palmieri #21 and Travis Zajac #14 of the New York Islanders skates against the New York Rangers at Nassau Coliseum on April 09, 2021 in Uniondale, New York. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
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Kyle Palmieri #21 of the New York Islanders. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

The two acquisitions made by the New York Islanders aren’t having the immediate impact fans thought they would, is that normal?

The New York Islanders made a big splash at the 2021 NHL trade deadline for the second year in a row. This year they sent a first in 2021, two ‘prospects’, and a conditional fourth-round pick in 2022 to get Kyle Palmieri and Travis Zajac from the New Jersey Devils.

It was a big trade that should have made the Isles into one of the top teams in the NHL. The acquisition after all gave the Isles exactly what they were missing. A top-six winger who can score 25+ goals in a year and a depth forward who was on pace for a 40+ point season.

But both Palmieri and Zajac have combined for four points in eleven games since the trade deadline. Zajac has even been a healthy scratch twice so far.

It has Islanders fans asking: “was it worth it?” I still maintain that it was and there’s still time for the two to be the impact players fans would have hoped they could be.

But with that in mind, I wanted to look back at other big acquisitions made at the trade deadline over the last five trade deadlines. How did they do for their new clubs after being acquired? Is what’s going on with Palmieri and Zajac rare or a common occurrence?

By “big acquisitions” I’m talking about players that returned a first-round pick for the team trading them away. And by “trade deadline” I don’t just mean the day itself but the few days leading up to it. Because as we know not everything happens on the actual day itself.

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