It shouldn’t come as a surprise but according to the latest NHL trade rumors, the New York Islanders aren’t trading John Tavares.
The New York Islanders face a fairly unknown future. They have finally locked up a great place to play for a while, as they’ll be moving to Belmont within the next few seasons. However, captain John Tavares’ future with the Islanders is far more uncertain. He’ll be a free agent at the end of this season and should get a huge contract. But according to the latest NHL trade rumors, the Islanders still aren’t trading Tavares.
Now, there are two sides to this. On one hand, the Islanders shouldn’t be trading Tavares if they want to contend for a Stanley Cup. Sure, the team is slumping like crazy. But as long as the Islanders have Tavares, they have a non-zero chance of winning a title.
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Trading him would also limit their ability to re-sign him. By keeping Tavares, the Islanders can continue to negotiate with him until July 1, when he becomes a free agent. Not to mention trading him would destroy any goodwill the front office and team has built over the years. It would render all their effort to getting a new arena at Belmont irrelevant.
But on the other hand, maybe the Islanders shouldn’t completely write off trading Tavares. If things don’t get better quickly, the Isles might find themselves in a hole they can’t dig themselves out of. And losing Tavares while getting nothing in return would be devastating for the Islanders.
The Isles have a bright future if they can keep their captain. With likely Calder Trophy winner Mathew Barzal as their second-line center, if the Islanders can fix their defense, they could be penciled into the postseason for several years to come.
What happens with Tavares will define the franchise’s future. For better or for worse, the Islanders are putting all their chips in with their captain.
Check out all the latest NHL trade rumors on our Rumors page.