In this morning's article on tsn.ca, Darren Dreger listed the young Phoenix centerman as his third player most likely to be dealt. In Spector's analysis of the list, he noted while Phoenix will be hesitant to give up on a 21 year old in his third season, Mueller and Tippett are not a good fit. Mueller is also an RFA at the end of the year as his entry level contract is expriing. Now Mueller is an interesting name, a young player obviously in need of a change of scenery and Phoenix seems to be willing to let him go for a price.
I think adding Mueller would be a good move for both the Islanders and Mueller. For the Islanders they get a big, young center that scored 22 goals his rookie year and even in a down year last year would have ranked in the top five on the Islanders in goals with 13. For Mueller, it gets him the change of scenery he needs and hopefully a place where he can develop under Scott Gordon and hopefully flourish around fellow young guns Kyle Okposo, Josh Bailey and John Tavares.
Now what would be the price? Dreger notes that Poenix will (obviously) want some good young talent in return. Would a package of de Haan/Hamonic, one of the young developing forwards (Martin, Ullstrom, Petrov, ect.) and/or our 1st rounder get Mueller or would that be too high a price to pay? All the talent we've talked about here to give up for Kovalchuk, honestly I would rather give up for Mueller. While he hasn't put up the numbers of a Kovy, he is five years younger and more importantly won't be walking this offseason.
My verdict - If you can get him. Getting Mueller would be the kind of trade that would make this team better this year but at the same time would not destroy
the rebuild Snow's master plan.