The New York Islanders need to think long and hard about being an NHL seller this trade deadline. No one is saying GM Lou Lamoriello is to sell everyone. But there are a couple of veterans where it might make sense to move at this year's trade deadline.
The New York Islanders have been major buyers at the NHL trade deadline the last couple of years. However, this season due to a myriad of reasons and curveballs unless a very big winning streak starts now the Isles will be home this post-season.
The Islanders brain trust need to consider being sellers at this years NHL Trade Deadline.
It hasn't been Semyon Varlamov's best season in the blue and orange but he is still a top goalie in this league. In his time with the Islanders, Varlamov has shown he can be the guy in the net for a team who has Stanley Cup aspirations.
Varly has one more year to go on his contract with a $5 million cap hit. The Islander's brain trust feels that they can be a contender again next season. The question is do they want to continue with roughly a 50-50 split between Ilya Sorokin and Varly or would they rather have Sorokin play a majority of the games moving forward with a veteran backup?
There are a lot of advantages to keeping Varlamov for next season and Lamoriello can always move him next year before the trade tradeline. Again, if clearing cap space is not an issue for the Isles which it doesn't appear it will be this off-season then unless Lamoriello draws a first-round pick from a team with high aspirations and desperate for a goalie upgrade the Isle should stand pat here.
A lot of teams are going to want the pit bull player that is Cal Clutterbuck. For a Stanley Cup contender putting Clutterbuck on their bottom six and with what he brings in terms of his physicality and getting under the opponents' skin goes well beyond statistics come the playoffs.
The 34-year old winger is on the last year of his deal and becomes an unrestricted free agent in the off-season. The Isles could resign him to a friendly 1-year deal come this summer to keep their identity line in tact if they wish.. A return of a third-round pick would be in the offering for sure and maybe even a second.
Moving Clutterbuck would also allow Lou and Barry Trotz to look at some youngsters up front the rest of this regular season.
Andy Greene, Zdeno Chara, Zach Parise:
Again, this would allow the Islanders to look at some young defenseman they have down in Bridgeport with the big club the rest of the way. Again the Islanders return would be in the neighborhood of a second or third-round draft pick for each veteran defenseman.
While Zach Parise hasn't found the back of the net as much as he would like this year, he has had played well this season. Parise could help a contender looking for depth on their third line.
The Isles being a seller would be about grabbing some draft capital but also just as importantly taking a close look at some youngsters in the organization currently not with the big club. The Islanders are hoping this season is one step back and next will be two steps forward.