As the Islanders inch closer to the second wild card spot in the Eastern Conference, there are a couple different trade targets they should look at:
Ryan Nugent Hopkins/Jordan Eberle
You ask, “why do the Islanders need to add another center to a team with a plethora of centers?” Well, he would come in and relieve some of the pressure that is put on John Tavares. He plays on the 2nd power play unit for Edmonton and would instantly be an upgrade over any guys on the Islanders 2nd PP unit. Then there is talk about how Tavares needs a winger. Tavares and Eberle played well when they were in juniors. If Garth Snow were to acquire Eberle, could he and Tavares rekindle the magic they once had? Certainly something the fans could hope for.
Matt Duchene/Gabriel Landeskog
Word around the league has it that Joe Sakic is trying to rebuild in Colorado. It is being said that Sakic wants a top 4 D-Man, top prospect and 1st round pick. Duchene is under contract for 2 more years. The more intriguing option is Landeskog, under contract for 4 more years and 2 years younger than Duchene. Both are talented hockey players who would help out this Islanders team immensely. However, at that price tag is it worth it? A 1 for 1 trade would be more likely.
Nail Yakupov is not the superstar everyone dreams of having on their team, but he could turn out to be better than expected if he is put on the RW of John Tavares. The St. Louis Blues are looking around the league for goaltending help. The Islanders could off Jaroslav Halak for Nail Yakupov. The Blues get their goalie they so desperately need, and the Islanders get a forward and their goalie controversy is over. Yakupov is only 23 years old. The Islanders do not need another middle-6 forward. The former #1 overall pick in 2012 has not lived up to expectations, but he might just need John Tavares.
If Boston continues to fall in the standings, they might be thinking about a rebuild. Beleskey is 28 years old, but is playing on the 3rd line in Boston. He has 3 years left on his contract with a cap hit of 3.8 million. He is not a flashy player, but he had a good year last year. However, this year has been dreadful, with only 6 points in 27 games. He is also playing on a line with Riley Nash and Tim Schaller who are not that good. If he had better linemates like he did in Anaheim and his first year in Boston, he would be producing.
These are just a few guys worth considering if Garth Snow wants to bolster his hockey club and make a strong playoff push after the All-Star break. Will he make a big trade to bolster his team? Lets just sit back and watch.