Dad, What Should Jan Do With All These Centers?

2 Brothers Scrap Metal Commercial (via waterboy1825)

You know the feeling: You're sitting by the piano in your lavishly furnished living room and naturally you think: scrap metal! what am I going to do with all of it? So you call your friend Vicki, whose father is some sort of scrap metal disposition maven, for advice.

In a similar vein, as reality slowly dawns upon Islanders fans that this season will not end as we hoped it would, we naturally turn to our proverbial Vickis to ask:

What should we do with all these Centers?

While the analogy to scrap metal is inexact, the Islanders do have an excess of Centers that will need to be addressed before next season. After John Tavares (we're basically anchored to this #26-er for the next half decade), here's how it looks:

The Dane: Will Frans Nielsen reach a deal with the Isles? Will he be dealt before the trade deadline? Will he become a UFA in the offseason?

The Rushed: Aside from Tavares, Bailey's spot at C seems the most assured of the bunch. He has shown slow yet certain progress this season in all parts of his game, although the scoresheet hasn't yet reflected it. He's signed through next year and the possibility of a trade seems remote.

The Prodigy: After two years of dominating juniors (and no ability to play at BPT), Ryan Strome looks likely to land a spot on the Isles next season.

The Reasoner: Brought on to add some skill and offensive punch to the fourth line, Marty Reasoner hasn't scored a goal, is a -16 and is now out with broken hand. He is signed to a two year contract.

The Umlaut: David Ullstrom impressed with his play with the Isles. Although he played wing with the Isles, he is currently playing C at BPT.

The Tonelli: Not sure who came up with the comparison first, but the sheer will and determination in Casey Cizikas's play is certainly reminiscent of the other JT -- John Tonellis. Check out this assist (at around 2:10) where Casey seems to be saying "excuse me sir, I'm trying to pass this puck to that guy, do you mind?" Casey is currently tearing it up at BPT and his skills seem perfectly designed for a role on the 3rd or 4th line. He will likely make a strong push for a place on the roster next year.

The Collegian: Brock Nelson is having a solid season in college.

So that's 5 centers vying for 3 spots without counting the college kid or Ullstrom. Competition is good but it presents tough choices:

Option 1: If Frans re-signs and we assume that Strome and Bailey stay at C, that means Casey stays in BPT, Ullstrom stays on the wing (or stays in BPT) and Reasoner goes where? 2 Brothers Scraps Metal?

Option 2: Trade Frans. 2nd and 3rd line centers would be Bailey and Strome and let the rest of 'em fight for the 4th line spot. But then you won't have Frans.

Option 3: Move Strome and/or Bailey to wing and Frans stays. The 4h line spot is open for the rest of them.

So, what do you think?

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