Islanders will face bidding war for Kevin Fiala

St Louis Blues v Minnesota Wild - Game Five
St Louis Blues v Minnesota Wild - Game Five / David Berding/GettyImages

This is exactly what Bill Guerin wanted. The Minnesota Wild GM wanted a number of teams calling him up during the offseason to acquire winger Kevin Fiala. For the New York Islanders, this isn't a great situation to be in. Even if it was fairly obvious that this would happen.

Now, let's look at the other teams in the mix for Fiala and what they have to offer to the Wild for their point-per-game winger from last season.

New York Islanders will face bidding war for Kevin Fiala

New Jersey Devils
The Devils are at that stage of their cycle. Sure, they have that second overall pick, but that was, as Bob Ross would say: "a happy accident". They've got their young core that's ready to take a step up, now they need a few key veteran pieces to push that core forward.

The Devils have a lot they can offer for Fiala. Specifically when it comes to futures.

Pieces they can give up:
2022 2nd overall pick (?)
Dawson Mercer
Nolan Foote
...any other prospect really

Ottawa Senators
The Ottawa Senators are basically at the same place the Devils are. They have a young core and need those veteran players to complement that core. GM Pierre Dorion came out and said exactly that in his exit interview for the year. Kevin Fiala seems just like the type of player the Sens should try to pull. Because honestly, they aren't likely to pull someone like him through free agency.

And just like the Devils, the Senators have the pieces to make it work. Their 2022 pick isn't nearly as good as the Devils, but it's still in the top 10 of the draft. And they're much more willing to move it than the Devils will be.

Pieces they can give up:
2022 7th overall pick
Roby Järventie
Mads Sogaard
...any prospect not named Jake Sanderson

Anaheim Ducks
I wouldn't say the Ducks are at the same place as those first two teams. There's still work to be done in reshaping the team before they should be taking big steps. But getting Fiala might paper over some of those issues.

They've got pieces, but are they willing to give off that much of their future? Losing a top 10 pick might not be the biggest deal, but losing one of Dostal or Helleson could be a big loss for them. Maybe they can put a solid roster player in there too, but do they want to part with a piece of their core? I guess if Fiala is an upgrade over that player, why not?

Pieces they can give up:
2022 10th overall pick
Lukas Dostal
Drew Helleson
Sam Steel (?)
Sonny Milano (?)

LA Kings
They made the playoffs this year so the LA Kings are a bigger draw than any of the other teams listed here in terms of how close they are to "winning it". Though the Isles have gone to conference finals in two of the last three years. But, for the Kings, adding Kevin Fiala could be huge. The Kings were a top 10 defensive team but finished 20th for goals. Adding a point-per-game player would be ideal.

Pieces they can give up:
2022 19th overall pick
Samuel Helenius
Brant Clarke

How do the Isles stack up?

The Isles might not be able to give the Wild the same futures as some of these other teams. Specifically the Devils or Senators. But they could give off NHL-ready players now like Oliver Wahlstrom or Kieffer Bellows.

That could be much more appealing for the Wild who would be losing a roster player and would need to fill that gap in the lineup with a cost controllable player. Both Wahlstrom and Bellows give the Wild that. Add a 13th overall pick to that mix and I could see Minnesota going for it over a more valuable package of pure futures.

Ultimately it's clear that the Wild will get pitches from a number of teams in the league for Fiala. And that will, as the laws of economics dictates, drive up the price. Does it drive it up to the point where the Islanders can't compete? Maybe. But I think it's clear that Lou is all in on acquiring the talent he needs for 2022-23 so I don't think the Isles will be so easily priced out here.