The trade rumors surrounding pending free agent and New York Islanders captain John Tavares have been so intense all season that even the superstar forward deleted his Twitter account before the start of the campaign not to be bothered with it. However, there is always someone reminding him and on Wednesday, there was a huge scrum of reporters around Tavares to see if he would comment on his potential last home game with the Islanders, that would take place Thursday night.
Fans had some expectations when the campaign started seeing that it was reported at the end of last season, he and Islanders management spoke about getting "something done as soon as possible," eligible to sign an extension as early as July 1, 2017. And now we are a few games away from the end of the regular calendar, the Islanders are almost eliminated from playoff contention and Tavares has not signed an extension...
The clock has not run out of time: the Islanders still have three months to convince Tavares to stay with the team that selected him first overall back in 2009. However, Tavares might be getting wind of some trade proposals out there, and might want his agent and the Isles to take a closer look at the offers.
The latest proposed offer appears to include the Montreal Canadiens, who are seriously competing to win over Tavares. It seems that a deal including Habs captain Max Pacioretty, young netminder Charlie Lindgren and a pick at the draft could be the perfect pitch to land the star player.
TSN analyst and former NHL netminer Jamie McLellan once revealed the biggest missing piece for the Isles when it comes to re-signing Tavares and it has more to do with the overall success of the team, and not just the current playoff situation:
"When I look at his whole body of work, yeah he's got some terrific players around him like Mathew Barzal, who's probably going to win the Calder this year... I just look at this whole organization, and the one thing they don't have is a starting goaltender that can give them 65+ games, so if I am John Tavares and his management group and team and say: who is going to play in net for those years - that is a key decision for me moving forward there.
"I don't see any scenario that John Tavares, if they don't make the playoffs, that he is going to sign there."
With Carey Price in net, and a strong leader in Shea Weber, Tavares could be convinced to sign a mega deal in Montreal, who would have the cap space for it. The Isles could bet on young goalie Lindgren, who is a talented kid, and manage to keep a good scoring front with Pacioretty on hand.
Would you pull the trigger on this deal?