The speculation continues as to whether or not the NY Islanders and general manager Lou Lamoriello will be buyers or sellers at the approaching NHL Trade Deadline, especially as the Isles continue to trend in a downward direction in the standings. A few days ago, Sportsnet insider Elliotte Friedman reported that the Islanders were "looking around" the Jakob Chychrun situation and what the Arizona Coyotes might want to do with the star defenseman. As of Friday morning, Friedman provided an update on Lamoriello's mindset regarding the Coyotes asking price.
Friedman stated how he had a conversation with Lamoriello heading into the 2012 NHL Playoffs when he was GM of the New Jersey Devils and they went on a run to the Stanley Cup Final. Lamoriello expressed to Friedman that he doesn't do rentals unless he believes his team can absolutely win the Stanley Cup. That year, the Devils brought in defenseman Marek Zidlickey as a rental, but the Devils ultimately dropped the cup final to the Los Angelas Kings.
"I can't see him doing a rental," Friedman stated on the latest episode of 32 Thoughts Podcast. "Someone told me they had interst in (Chychrun), but he just found the price outrageous to him. And especially now, if your the Islanders, are you in a position where you should be giving up futures, even for two more years of Jakob Chychrun? I'm not convinced you should be doing that."
The asking price for Chychrun according to Hailey Salvian of The Athletic is two first-round picks plus a prospect. The Islanders likely don't have a prospect after Aatu Räty, and they cannot afford to fork over two first round picks with such an aging roster.
The idea of acquiring a young player who is under team control is the right idea, however, it's the wrong position. Plain and simple, the Islanders need goal scoring wingers and according to Friedman, a rental like Vladimir Tarasenko doesn't make sense. Everyone wants Timo Meier and the Islanders have probably checked in on that situation too, but teams with deeper pockets can surely outbid the Islanders for the star winger. The next few weeks for the Islanders will be telling as their direction heading into the deadline, buyers or sellers, is surely unknown.