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Oilers looking into Islanders Semyon Varlamov means little

Toronto Maple Leafs v New York Islanders
Toronto Maple Leafs v New York Islanders / Christopher Pasatieri/GettyImages
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According to Elliotte Friedman, the Edmonton Oilers have checked in on a number of goalies to fix their goaltending woes. One of those goalies was New York Islanders Semyon Varlamov it seems.

Freidman wrote the following in his most recent 32 Thoughts blog for Sportsnet:

"If Philadelphia had been willing to take a late-round pick for Martin Jones, it’s possible he would already be an Edmonton Oiler. But the Flyers wanted something better and felt the market will strengthen as we get closer to the deadline. Name a goalie -- Alexander Georgiev, Braden Holtby, Ville Husso, Anton Khudobin, Joonas Korpisalo, Vitek Vanecek, Semyon Varlamov -- they looked at it."

Elliotte Friedman

And of course, why wouldn't the Edmonton Oilers check-in on Varlamov? The veteran goalie finished fifth for the Vezina Trophy last year. He was second for Vezina voting in 2013-14 and was fourth in Hart Trophy voting that year as well. He's a solid goalie.

Oilers looking into New York Islanders Semyon Varlamov means little

Sure, this season isn't going perfectly for Varlamov but he's still averaging a 0.914SV% and 2.65GAA. Which is way better than what the Oilers are getting from their shot-stoppers. Just look at these numbers for Edmonton's goalies this year:

Mikko Koskinen: 23 GP, 3.24GAA, and 0.899SV%
Stuart Skinner: 11GP, 2.93GAA, and 0.907SV%
Mike Smith: 6GP, 3.76GAA, and 0.898SV%

But no one should jump to the conclusion that a deal will be done between the two sides.

Varlamov can control where he goes (to a certain degree) with a 16-team no-trade list. A list that you have to imagine includes the Edmonton Oilers because these lists usually do and have for years now.

But, let's assume for a second that Varly OKs a move to Edmonton, would the Islanders even want to trade him away? The quick answer is: No. Let me explain.

While the Islanders are 14 points back of a Wild Card spot they've still got their eyes on making the post-season. They've still got 47 games to play from now through April (93 days) to make that happen. That's a lot of games in not a lot of time.

As much as the Islanders like Ilya Sorokin, they can't play him every night. They need another capable goalie to play a few times over this taxing stretch. The Islanders still have eleven back-to-back sets on the schedule. Having another capable goalie like Varlamov to play those back-to-backs, and continue that 3:1 split with Sorokin will be key to the isles turning things around.

And with all due respect to the Islanders goalie pipeline, there isn't another goalie in the depth chart that's ready to step in that could take Varlamov's spot in the lineup.

So, unless the Oilers are ready to blow the Isles socks off with a blockbuster return (they aren't), there's no reason to trade Varlamov right now. Looking into Varly is the Oilers completing their due diligence. Nothing more.

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