The New York Islanders acquired veteran defenseman Andy Greene yesterday, in an effort to bolster their blue line with Adam Pelech out for an extended period. I was late on posting the article, so I decided to just wait until after he played his first game today to add in some observations in his Islanders’ debut.
First off, to the trade itself. I’ve got to be honest, I don’t love it. The Islanders don’t have a good prospect pool whatsoever and to move a second-round pick for a 37-year-old depth defenseman doesn’t sit well with me. No hate on Andy Greene, that’s just a lot to pay and New York maybe shouldn’t have paid it.
It’s strange to me that some have speculated that Lou Lamoriello may not want to pay a first-round pick for Jean-Gabriel Pageau, who could add legitimate offense, yet he was willing to part with a second-round pick and a prospect for Greene. Lamoriello does have a history of doing this though, as he moved second-round picks in back to back years while in Toronto in order to acquire Brian Boyle and Tomas Plekanec, both of whom slotted into the lineup as fourth-line centers. I’ll go out on a limb and say three second-round picks would likely go further than less than half a year from each of Boyle, Plekanec and Greene.
That being said, if Lamoriello turns around and adds a top-six forward as well, I change my tone on this move (even though I’m not really a fan of the Islanders trading for rentals in general). If you’re going for it, go for it. But if this is all we see from the Islanders before the deadline, it seems like a bit of a half-hearted attempt to contend.
As for the game, Greene was solid. He was paired with Ryan Pulock and played on the penalty kill, collecting an assist on New York's lone goal. For most of the game, he didn’t stand out for better or worse really and when he got the puck, it was almost always the simple play, mainly a short pass. The stretch passes he did attempt didn’t land. Overall, he was good.
Again, I think this move on it’s own doesn’t look great but if the Islanders have made a decision to make a run this year and are going to add to their forward group as well, it’s a different story.
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OTHER ISLANDERS ARTICLES FROM FEBRUARY
Islanders should keep new third-line together
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Islanders call up Kieffer Bellows