Report: NY Islanders believed Alex DeBrincat was willing to sign an extension with team

New York Rangers v Ottawa Senators
New York Rangers v Ottawa Senators / Chris Tanouye/Freestyle Photo/GettyImages

Long Island may not have been Alex DeBrincat's preferred choice, but the New York Islanders were under the impression it was s a destination he was willing to go to, according to a report from beat reporter Andrew Gross in Newsday.

Per Gross, the Islanders' offer for the two-time 40-goal scorer centered around center J-G Pageau and forward Oliver Wahlstrom, who is a restricted free agent (RFA). Given the package that the Detroit Red Wings sent to the Ottawa Senators in exchange for DeBrincat, the deal would've also likely included a 2024 1st-round pick and potentially another prospect.

Among the sticking points reportedly for the Senators was that GM Pierre Dorion preferred not to take back any significant salaries in a deal, and though Pageau was a fan-favorite during his tenure in Ottawa and could certainly help them return to the playoffs, he has three years left on his contract at $5M AAV. Meanwhile, the 23-year-old Wahlstrom is due a new contract in the coming weeks as an RFA and is coming off a season where he scored seven goals in just 35 games after being lost for the season with a knee injury in December.

In the deal the Senators took back from Detroit, the only significant salary was that of 20-goal scorer Dominik Kubalik, who has one year left on his contract at 2.5M and will be an unrestricted free agent (UFA) after next season. The trade also included a conditional first-round pick in 2024, a fourth-round pick in 2024, and defensive prospect Donovan Sebrango, who is projected to have a shot at the NHL as a third-pair defenseman.

There will be debate amongst fans as to whether trading both Pageau and Wahlstrom plus more draft capital for the 26-year-old DeBrincat would've been worth it for the Islanders, who desperately want to improve the offense and specifically their power play next season.

In some ways, it may feel better for fans to believe that DeBrincat was open to coming to and staying with the Islanders. In another way, it will be frustrating that the team's current salary cap predicament and lack of top prospects is likely what prevented them from besting Detroit's offer.