Since late October, the New York Islanders have been on a roll going 13-4-0 after the first six games. A big reason for that is Jean-Gabriel Pageau who the blue and orange are very lucky to have. Pageau does so much for the Islanders.
Swiss Army Knife
Pageau has been called the ultimate swiss army knife kind of player. He just doesn't do several things, he is involved with almost everything. On top of that, he does all of those things well.
Pageau is a two-way center, that is terrific defensively and good offensively as well. He provides secondary scoring (5th on the team with 14 Points, 6 Goals) and is a weapon on the power play (leads the Isles with 4 PPG) and one of the team's top penalty killers (also has 1 shorthanded goal).
Heading into Sunday's action, November 27th, the Isles are ranked 11th on the power play (23.5%) and fourth on the penalty kill (82.7%). Let's not forget how big Pageau is and has been this season in the faceoff circle. Again heading into Sunday's action on November 27th, Pageau has won the 6th most faceoffs in the league with 251.
Another point to remember is Pageau's game is so flexible that he can center up and down the lineup (lines 1 through 4) and be a natural fit on that line. This is something that gives head coach Lane Lambert a big advantage night in - night out. Finally do not forget that he also has a knack for scoring big goals.
You add it all up and the Isles have a heck of a player and are so lucky to have him.
Sometimes the best moves a team makes are those that do not happen. Remember over the majority of the summer word was that Nazem Kadri was Long Island bound. The question was who was going to be moved to fit Kadri under the cap.
There was a lot of speculation that Pageau would be that player. Kadri is a top player, but losing Pageau would have hurt the Islanders with everything he does and how he fits like a glove on this team. Yes, adding Kadri would have been a big addition (although in a couple of years his age and cap number could have been a huge issue) but losing Pageau would have been a huge subtraction.
Maybe Lou Lamoriello was going to add Kadri by moving someone else other than Pageau. We will never know the answer to that. But one thing is for sure the Islanders are so lucky to have Pageau as one of their core players.