Armed with what will likely be the 13th overall pick at the 2022 draft, is it a good idea for the New York Islanders to trade down?
You might be thinking: "if they're going to trade the pick why not trade it for a player as part of the retool instead of trading it for more draft capital?" That's a great point. It really is. I'd much rather see the Islanders do that.
But that assumes the Isles can find the right trade. So for this post, let's assume the Islanders can't find the right trade. Does trying to trade down at the draft make sense?
New York Islanders: Is trading down at the 2022 NHL Draft smart?
If you tuned into the 2022 NFL you saw Washington trade back from 11th to 16th and get a third-rounder (98th) and fourth-rounder (120th) from the Saints to do so. Should the Islanders do the same?
I guess it depends, right? It all depends on what they can conceivably get back. Obviously, the return is subjective and can change based on a number of factors, but there was an interesting study done back in 2011 that could help us figure out what the Isles could get back for moving back.
In 2011 Michael Schuckers wrote a study on the "What's An NHL Draft Pick Worth?" for St Lawrence University. In his study, Schuckers mapped out the value of every single pick at the NHL draft which "provides a common currency for teams to evaluate the value of the draft selections for trading those selections".
According to Schuckers, the 13th overall pick is worth 481 points. So fair compensation for that pick would have to equal those 481 points in trade capital.
Obviously, there's an endless number of combinations that can be made to equal that 481 points. If I were Lou I'd call up Arizona to see if they're interested. The Coyotes have seven picks in the first two rounds of the 2022 draft.
Currently, the Coyotes have the 31st (Colorado) and 36th (Philadelphia) overall pick at the draft. Based on Schucker's study both picks are equivalent to 472 points. So worthy of a trade:
Total value: 472 points
Is Arizona interested? I bet. Is that falling too far down for the Islanders, maybe. If that one doesn't work for you how about Buffalo's 16th overall pick and a sixth-round pick? That should be enough to get it done based on Schucker's pick valuation and the Isles only move back three spots.
They can likely still get their guy and add a pick for free really.
If neither works for you, you now have the study and the points system so you can find the right combination that works for you. Let me know which one works for you, I'd love to hear it.
So, again, is it a good idea or even a smart one to move back at the draft? If the Isles can get their guy by moving back yes. A hundred percent, even if all their getting is a sixth rounder for it. That's a free pick. And of course that assumes Schuckers study is 100% in line with the two GMs making the deal. And as we've seen with other trades around the NHL, anything is possible.