Going into the 2022 NHL draft, the New York Islanders hold five selections. They don't have a fourth or seventh-round pick as a result of trades for Palmieri/Zajac and Braydon Coburn, respectively.
If the Islanders have a "need" at the draft it's going to be quality. Just bring in the best available player every time they step up to the podium. But with Henrik Tikkanen's NHL rights expiring earlier this week, I bet the Isles go into the draft feeling they need to draft a goalie.
New York Islanders will almost certainly draft a goalie in 2022
With Henrik Tikkanen - 2020 7th round draft pick - now no longer part of the Islanders reserve list, the goalie pool is down to two players; Jakub Skarek and Tristan Lennox.
That's not exactly what you'd call a "deep" goalie pool. Skarek (2018 third-round pick) is the clear front-runner in the goalie pool with Lennox (2021 third-round pick) behind the Czech goalie.
Neither are bad goalies. Skarek has shown quality at the AHL, even if he hasn't been able to maintain it over a full season. While Lennox did well for a bad Saginaw Spirit side. His 3.20GAA and 0.888SV% sounds rough for an NHL goalie, but at the OHL level, it's pretty good. He finished 15th in GAA and 22nd in SV% for goalies that played more than three games.
Again, that's while playing for a Saginaw side that finished 19th out of 20 teams in the OHL based on record and goals-against. Saginaw was a bad team last year and Lennox did very well.
Lennox, who turns 20 on October 21, could make the jump to the pros next season. Leaving no one in the Islanders prospect pool to keep the pipeline going. After Lennox, we don't have any other "amateurs" to keep feeding the Isles (at either level).
That's why I'm sure, they'll be drafting a goalie at the 2022 draft.
The two top guys are Tyler Brennan (WHL) and Topias Leinonen (JYP). Either should be available in the third round of the draft. Who's better is a solid debate. Both are similar in size and in quality. So it really comes down to preference.
They could guarantee either by drafting them with that 65th overall but I don't see the Isles reaching for a goalie. But I'd expect the Isles to bring in one of the two if they're still available when they select in the third round (78th overall).