The 3 p.m. NHL trade deadline came and went on Monday with little fanfare for the New York Islanders. No, unlike past years they didn’t stand pat, rather general manager Lou Lamoriello had already made the moves that he wanted to make well beforehand.
The Islanders acquired Kyle Palmieri and Travis Zajac from New Jersey on Wednesday for a first-round pick this year, a conditional fourth-round next year, Mason Jobst and A.J. Greer. Braydon Coburn was added late last night in a deal with Ottawa to boost the Isles’ depth on the blue line. It only cost them a seventh-rounder next season.
A report early Monday morning indicated that the Islanders could be looking to make one more depth move before the deadline hit, but Lamoriello held firm with the deals that had already been made. The Islanders trade with New Jersey had been the first blockbuster deal in the days leading up to Monday’s deadline.
“Certainly if there was something that would have helped us or made us better we would have done it,” Lamoriello said during a conference call with reporters. “But as you know we tried to proact and made some additions earlier in the trade deadline period. We’re comfortable right now.”
The New York Islanders had also been reportedly linked to Taylor Hall as well, which included a report on Saturday Night during the Hockey Night in Canada broadcast. Sportsnet’s Chris Johnston indicated that the Islanders were still “potentially interested” in the then Buffalo forward.
Hall was eventually dealt to East Division rival Boston for a second-round pick and Anders Bjork.
The Islanders are currently tied for first place in the East with Washington and have already gotten three games out of deadline acquisitions Palmieri and Zajac. Palmieri even scored his first goal as an Islander on Sunday night against the New York Rangers.
The two, along with Coburn, were brought over to Long Island with the organization have to give up very little when it comes to its prospect pool. The New York Islanders did have to hand over several draft picks, including a first-round selection this year, but only had to send Mason Jobst and A.J. Greer to New Jersey for Palmieri and Zajac.
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Neither were viewed as prospects that were going to make a big mark on the Islanders organization.
“I think we’re quite happy with the big picture,” Lamoriello said. “I think that, as we’ve always said, you have a five-year plan and it changes every day. That certainly depends on how the team performs during the year and where you can possibly go. You try and maintain as many of your quality prospects as you can. I think we’re extremely fortunate here if you look at the people that we have here between our NHL roster, our taxi squad, and two or three and maybe four prospects in the minors that we think can play in the NHL. It’s pretty good.”
Three players that the Islanders did bring in are all on expiring contracts after this season and the expectation was that they were going to be rental options, especially considering the Islanders cap situation. The Islanders have $1.55 million left in cap room right now, which includes being able to exceed the cap with Anders Lee and Johnny Boychuk on LTIR.
However, Lamoriello wouldn’t rule out bring any of them back next season.
“These players that we acquired, we have not said that we would not consider re-signing them or bringing them back,” Lamoriello said. “A lot will depend on how things transpire between now and the end of the year.”