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Weird Islanders: The Podcast! - Episode 36 - Taylor Beck, Christopher Gibson and the “Big” Trade that Wasn’t (with guest Arthur Staple)

It was just, “Let’s get a fistful of Powerball tickets and we’ll see if we can win one.”

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Joined by their friend Arthur Staple of The Athletic, Mike and Dan remember a rare NHL five-for-one trade that didn’t really work out for either the Islanders or Maple Leafs.

Just before training camp 2015, the Islanders sent winger Michael Grabner, an impending free agent coming off a couple of down years, to Toronto for five prospects: forwards Taylor Beck and Carter Verhaeghe, defenders Matt Finn and Tom Nilsson and goalie Christopher Gibson.

In a very buttoned-up sport, trading one player for almost an entire starting lineup should be notable. But in this case, the results were, uh, mixed at best.

Staple, who covered the Islanders at the time and is back on the beat now, tells us about Gibson’s intelligence and intermittent excellence, Beck’s missed potential, Grabner’s short stay with the Leafs (and why he gave Staple the cold shoulder for a while), and how everyone missed on Verhaeghe before his recent breakout seasons.

Time to look back on what seemed like a wild trade that just got sucked into the ether.

Thanks again to Art for coming on. It’s always great catching up with him and we’re thankful to have him back covering the Islanders again.


What makes a “Weird Islander?”

We’re always open to suggestions about other Weird Islanders to discuss. Remember the criteria. Candidates must fulfill one of the two of the following:

  • Played one (1) season or less for the Islanders or very short stints over multiple seasons.
  • Be a veteran NHLer who is not generally associated with his time on Islanders.

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