The Great Lou Lamoriello trade freeze has finally come to an end. The Islanders general manager swung the second deal of his tenure, acquiring defenseman Andy Greene from the New Jersey Devils in exchange for a 2021 second round pick and minor league defenseman David Quenneville.
Greene has two goals and nine assists in 53 games this season. In 923 career games, he has 49 goals and 197 assists. But points aren’t really his thing. He’s made a career of being an old school defenseman, eating both pucks and ice time in copious amounts. He’ll help to solidify an Islanders defense core that’s been uncharacteristically leaky after a couple of key injuries.
Greene will be an unrestricted free agent at the conclusion of this season. Of note - and boy here’s a phrase you don’t hear too often - Greene waived his no movement clause to COME TO the Islanders WHATWHAAAT?
“It was a casual conversation,” Greene said. “I wasn’t going to waive the no-trade to go just anywhere, and I talked it over with my family, my wife — if she wasn’t comfortable with it, that would have a big impact. But we talked it over the last couple weeks, she was great, and here we are.”
Also of note: In 14 years in the NHL, Andy Greene has had exactly one fight. And it happened at Barclays Center against... Brock Nelson. That’s gonna be awkward.
Wait. Isn’t Andy Greene, like, old? Yes. He’s 37 and has spent his entire 14-year career in New Jersey after having been signed as an NCAA free agent by Lou Lamoriello there. He’s been the Devils captain for the last five seasons. Despite the wear and tear, he’s still an okay defender and PKer.
His best days are behind him, but Andy Greene is still a decent NHL defensemen. https://t.co/QxztH3LAwx pic.twitter.com/UrUFE9mA5U— Evolving-Hockey (@EvolvingHockey) February 16, 2020
Your PK is about to get a lot better too (via @WaveIntel). pic.twitter.com/0CBMslMmCO— ᴍᴀᴛᴛ ᴅᴏɴᴅᴇʀs (@mattdonders) February 16, 2020
Wait. Why would a team that can’t score acquire an old defenseman? Because these days, they can’t defend well, either. Since Adam Pelech was lost to injury a few weeks ago, the Islanders defensive corps has been under a major strain, with some of their more veteran players struggling with increased minutes. Johnny Boychuk’s ice time has dwindled as he plays a more sheltered role with rookie Noah Dobson, but it didn’t help him the other night in Nashville, when he was on the ice for four goals against in just 14 minutes or so.
The pick the Islanders surrendered isn’t for the upcoming draft but for the next one. David Quenneville, 21, was a seventh round pick in 2016 (no. 200 overall). After a very prolific junior career for Medicine Hat, the 5’-8” defender couldn’t find his way in the pros, bouncing between AHL Bridgeport and ECHL Worchester the last two seasons.
Wait. What about Sebastian Aho? Isn’t he still with them?
Yup. He is. Nope. He’s been reassigned back to Bridgeport. Dobson, of course, cannot be sent to the AHL because of the agreement with the CHL. But this will probably mean an end to the kid’s run as an everyday player.
Wait. Does this mean more trades? I mean, this can’t be it, right? Lou is saying the usual Lou things:
#Isles President/GM Lou Lamoriello says he's open to making more trade(s) before Feb. 24 but has to be "right situation, right fit, and cannot lose sight of tomorrow."— Andrew Gross (@AGrossNewsday) February 16, 2020
Wait. Does this mean the Devils are selling off everything? Sure sounds like it. Or maybe not. Actually, yeah.
The trade deadline is Monday, February 24th.