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Russell’s Roundup: Draft Day Trade Buzz; Trade Pageau or Cizikas

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Jean-Gabriel Pageau, New York Islanders

It’s officially draft day for the 2024 NHL Entry Draft. The New York Islanders currently possess the 20th overall selection. Still, it remains to be seen whether or not they will keep the pick as rumors continue to build about multiple teams looking to trade out their picks to improve their roster now. Elsewhere, the NHL Awards were handed out last night, old friend Barry Trotz struck a deal with Juuse Saros and San Jose made another trade.

Today will be busy, with the first day of the Draft scheduled for 7 p.m. Eastern. The Islanders still have a first-round pick but haven’t used one since Simon Holmstrom in 2019. Later today at NYI Hockey Now, we will review potential picks ahead of the draft, assuming the Islanders keep the pick.

New York Islanders

Since this offseason began, everyone has been set on shipping out Jean-Gabriel Pageau to clear his $5 million from the books. However, the price to move out bad contracts is expensive, and the Islanders can’t keep shelling out draft picks to remove bad deals. Maybe it’s time to move Casey Cizikas.

NHL Trade Talk, Rumors, & National Hockey Now

Sportsnet: Although not yet official due to CBA Rules, Barry Trotz and the Nashville Predators have agreed to an eight-year extension for Juuse Saros, worth $7.74 annually. It’s a team-friendly deal and comes in underneath the deals Ilya Sorokin and Connor Hellebuyck signed last year. What it means for Jeremy Swayman and Igor Shesterkin remains to be seen.

San Jose Hockey Now: When the Sharks make moves, they come in bunches. Yesterday, they made two more trades, the first off which saw them move up in the draft from 14th to 11th overall, in a deal with the Sabres.

SJHN: Their next deal saw them land Carl Grundstrom from the LA Kings for former Bridgeport Islander, Kyle Burroughs.

Pittsburgh Hockey Now: Just like the Islanders, the Penguins are going shopping for scoring middle to top-six wingers. The great Dan Kingerski went over multiple potential candidates, with a couple of very intriguing names within.

Sportsnet: Another long and painful NHL Awards show was last night, but the night was finally a crowning night for Nathan MacKinnon, who won his first Hart Trophy. The full list of winners can be found here.

New Jersey Hockey Now: Brendan Smith, the Devils’ versatile defenseman who they also used as a winger, is set to become a UFA on July 1, but there’s some speculation he may stay. Here’s what James Nichols is hearing.