Today is the last day of this season to make an NHL trade. The Islanders could use some more NHL forwards. I think you see where I’m going with this.
The deadline passes at 3:00 p.m. this afternoon, but trades consummated in the final minutes can peter out for an hour or two after that while they wait on line at the trade call counter. So by tonight, we’ll know if the Islanders have any new faces roaming around.
I honestly don’t know what to expect, so I won’t try to make any predictions. Just hoping for a forward or two, preferably including a bona fide top six player but it doesn’t necessarily have to be! Just a couple halfway decent forwards, that’s all!
Recaps from biting back against the Sharks and Anders Lee’s big night (Mathew Barzal had a good evening, too, and is one point away from 200 in his career): LHH | Islanders | Newsday | NHL | NYI Skinny
- Lee had two goals and an assist, an assist that’s earning him praise. Lee, throughout all his goal-scoring, has never recorded a hat trick. He had a chance to complete his first one into the empty net at the end of the game but was being defended; so, rather than try to force it and miss the net, he instead fed wide-open Josh Bailey to ensure the game was in the bag. Now that’s a captain that cares about winning. [Newsday]
- And here’s what he had to say about his night (he said he might regret passing to Bailey if he never gets a hat trick):
"The points are so tough to come by. Our division is crazy. It's tight the whole way down and it's going to be the rest of the way here. The whole night is huge." - Anders Lee pic.twitter.com/4Chz59OPKt— New York Islanders (@NYIslanders) February 24, 2020
- The Islanders were identified as a team expected to be an “active” buyer by Elliotte Friedman on Saturday night. Boy I hope that they actually buy something. [Sportsnet]
- LATE ADD: I’m putting this in here today because it won’t be relevant tomorrow, but Arthur Staple put out an article this morning detailing what he’s hearing: Chris Kreider is unlikely (more on that below); they could look into a Derek Grant/Tyler Ennis type for cheap; Andrew Ladd’s random recall tells him that it was a showcase in a potential swap of problem contracts, possibly Kyle Turris from Nashville; and that Jean-Gabriel Pageau remains a possibility, price pending. [The Athletic]
- The Sound Tigers dropped a 4-1 decision to J.F. Berube (!) and the Wolf Pack at home. Josh Ho-Sang had the lone Bridgeport goal, collecting and wrapping around a rebound from a Sebastian Aho shot. [CT Post | Sound Tigers]
- Isles assistant coach Lane Lambert was drafted by the Red Wings the same day as their GM, Steve Yzerman. The two were roommates for a time with the Wings, Stevie Y may consider him to be their new coach if Detroit moves on from Jeff Blashill at the end of the season. [Detroit Free Press]
- In Slapshots, Larry Brooks agrees with Denis Potvin that the dynastic Islanders should be inducted en masse into the Hockey Hall of Fame—all 16 that were there for all 4—and that the HHOF should honor whole teams, in general. I’d agree with that, too. [NY Post]
Trade Deadline News
- There was one rather shocking trade made last night: Ilya Kovalchuk went from the Canadiens to the Capitals for a third-round pick. A low price, probably worth the risk, but hey: there’s time. [NHL | Japers’ Rink]
- Also, Zach Bogosian, recently terminated by the Sabres, signed with the Lightning for the rest of the season. He needed to sign before the trade deadline to be eligible to play in the playoffs. [NHL]
- The Red Wings held Andreas Athanasiou and Mike Green out of the lineup in last night’s loss to the Flames for “asset management,” though no trade was imminent as of game time. [Detroit Free Press]
But late last night, just as I was getting ready to go to bed, the Oilers traded the contract of Kyle Brodziak and a conditional pick to Detroit for Green. So, in addition to maybe seeing Joe Thornton’s last game as a Shark, we Isles fans also got to see Mike Green’s last game as a Red Wing. Hooray?
Red Wings retain 50 percent of Mike Green’s cap hit and salary. https://t.co/xy8MkzR0IJ— Pierre LeBrun (@PierreVLeBrun) February 24, 2020
- Plan A for the Rangers was to extend Chris Kreider before the deadline. According to ol’ Brooksie, it’s on to Plan B—and since they’re probably selling off Kreider, he says they’re more likely to sell off other assets, as well. He also doesn’t believe the Islanders are a serious contender for his services. [NY Post]
- VIDEO: Meanwhile, J.G. Pageau continues to discuss a contract extension with the Senators, but if they don’t have him signed, they’ll probably trade him. That and more here. [TSN Insider Trading]
- VIDEO: Also, that whimper of an effort against a Zamboni driver has changed the Maple Leafs’ plans for the Trade Deadline. I love it. [TSN Insider Trading]
- It also prompted one of the hottest and funniest takes I’ve seen in a long time: “Maybe the Maple Leafs would have been better off with Babcock and Lou after all” by Damien Cox. HAHAHAHAHA. No take-backs! [The Star]
Beyond the Trades
Yesterday’s NHL scores include Washington beating the Penguins in regulation in a back-and-forth contest to regain the Metro Division lead. Also, Connor McDavid scored a goal and recorded two assists in his return to the ice in the Oilers’ win over the Kings.
- The Blues have officially been named the Wild’s visitor in the 2021 Winter Classic at Target Field, where the Minnesota Twins play. [Wild | NHL]
- The NHL considered many teams to play in Minnesota, but St. Louis was the favorite from Day 1 and was the overwhelming choice in the end. [The Athletic]
- Old friend Kyle Okposo scored the only two Sabres goals in their win over the Jets last night. He also played a sound defensive game. Glad to hear he’s doing well lately. [Buffalo News]
- A Chicago area hockey coach serially sexually abused many of his players for years in the 1980s and early 1990s. Most of his employers knew the rumors, but it took until September 2018 before he was done as a hockey coach. How? (As an aside, this is another well-researched, carefully- and excellently-written piece about a disturbing topic from Katie Strang. This is tough work and she’s always up to the task.) [The Athletic]