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New York Islanders

Islanders Mailbag: ‘There’s Nothing More To Say’, Trading Sorokin?

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New York Islanders

Like a broken record. Game after game, the New York Islanders continue to make the same mistakes leading to goals against, while their offense continues to be at the center of their problems.

The Islanders extended their losing streak to six games as they fell to the Ottawa Senators 2-1.

I thought it was time for another mailbag:

Lou has to take the fall for this if the Isles miss the playoffs. He totally misjudged what he had on his roster. (@poniesNpucks)

New York Islanders general manager Lou Lamoriello is the only one that can take the fall because he’s in charge of building the roster and making changes to better the team. We are approaching a full calendar year with no outside improvement to the forward group, a clear need since Barry Trotz took over in 2018.

I don’t know if it’s about misjudging the roster. There’s a clear human element to this, as there should be. It’s entirely possible that when his players spoke to him following the conclusion of last season, they asked for one last shot. Loyalty is a big thing in this organization, to a fault.

Lamoriello may have agreed to give them one shot, as last season was viewed by management as an outlier season.

But now is where Lamoriello has to make the most significant decision of his Islanders tenure, as he can go for the win right now with a roster full of holes are set the Islanders up for a better chance of sustainable success down the road.

Honestly, there is nothing more to say. Lou didn’t exactly make an inspirational press conference to instill any sort of hope. (@nyisles130)

On Tuesday, Lamoriello spoke in Ottawa about the state of the team, taking the blame for the lack of success, but did put some onus on his scorers for not doing their job. But Lamoriello used his usual cliches about improving the roster stating if there were moves to better the team, he’d make them.

But the subtraction has to be worth it for the addition.

The Islanders have lost six games, failing for similar reasons in each, and have just two wins in 13 games this month as their playoff hopes are dwindling slowly.

We only have one winger on the team who can skate and push the pace, but he’s got the worst finishing ability I’ve ever seen. (Beauvillier) (@goIfyTM)

It’s hard to understand what happened with Anthony Beauvillier. He’s used his speed. He’s created chances for himself at a rather high rate but has lost his finishing ability. He has created 90 scoring chances, with 30 of them considered high-danger, per NaturalStatrick.com.

Away from the advanced stats, many of his shots are missing the net or going right at the opposing netminder to the point where too few rebounds are being created. He’s played with Mathew Barzal the last two games, but their line with Casey Cizikas on the wing has no points to show for it, being outscored 2-1.

Time is ticking for Beauvillier to prove that he belongs to stay on this roster.

If we are sellers… Whose getting sold? I’m thinking Mayfield, Bailey, Varlamov, Johnston, and Beauvillier. (@hmgigante)

Suppose the New York Islanders do decide to sell, pending unrestricted free agents that you don’t need to keep or see as a big part of the future need to be, at the very least, on the trading block. Scott Mayfield and Semyon Varlamov would be where I start.

Mayfield will cost around 2.5-3.5 million per season, and he’s 30 years old. He plays physically, blocks shots, a big body in front, and is having the best offensive season in his career. He would be a strong addition to a playoff team. With his bounce-back season, Semyon Varlamov could get you a first-round pick. That was the price tag last season, and Varlamov struggled.

Mat Barzal has a ton of responsibility for the skid.(@newwavehalifax)

It’s been nine games since Mathew Barzal has lit the lamp, and he’s reverting to his old ways. He’s peeling off almost immediately when entering the zone and is forcing plays that aren’t there as he’s trying to do too much.

But he wouldn’t need to put pressure on himself if he had more offensive support that fits his game since he’s the face of the franchise.

That’s on Lou Lamoriello.

Who’s more to blame, the players who fail to score or management for not addressing the issue (@dzucks5)

Everyone is to blame. It starts with general manager Lou Lamoriello for not improving the team–his job. And he took the blame on Wednesday morning. It’s on Lane Lambert and the coaching staff for not getting the players ready to play or not holding certain players accountable.

And it’s on the players to play to a level much higher than the one they are playing right now.

Debate on Twitter. Should islanders trade Sorokin? He would bring back the biggest return in assets. (@Strafficman)

If the New York Islanders are going into a complete rebuild, you trade Ilya Sorokin and get back as many assets as possible.

If you aren’t planning to compete for a few years, that makes the most sense. But if you are doing anything else, a retool or going all in this season, you don’t even think about moving him.

He’s in his prime and will command around $8 million a year when his contract ends (UFA) following the 2023-24 season. No reason to spend that if winning games isn’t the top priority.