Friedman: Tough to read Islanders’ plans

So what might we expect from a pleasantly surprisingly New York Islanders team headed toward the trade deadline?

Elliotte Friedman had a Friday morning radio hit on Calgary’s Sportsnet 960.

The Insider was asked about the Islanders’ handful of expiring contracts, and what his read was concerning a team that has exceeded expectations this season.

“First of all, I’m not expecting a lot of updates out of Lou Lamoriello,” said Friedman dryly. “I think it’s going to be interesting. Brock Nelson is a guy who has had a pretty good year for them. Trotz really likes him. He’s a center, an unrestricted free agent. Anders Lee, he’s their captain, he got hurt last night, but they really believe in him. He’s an unrestricted free agent. The question about Lee is he’s 29 and sports are ageist now. People don’t like to pay deep into the 30s. So I think that’s always going to be a question, but there’s no doubt that they really respect him as a player and as their captain.

“Bobrovsky is a guy who has been kind of linked to the Islanders. I don’t know if they’re still interested. Robin Lehner has played pretty well for him. Do they decide to keep him, or do they go for a Bobrovsky or a Panarin, or do they target one of Toronto’s guys as an offer sheet.

“The tough thing about reading the Islanders is nobody knows what Lamoriello is going to do. It’s not like he gives hints.

“But there’s no question that I think a lot of those guys have made them think, ‘Hey, we’re better off here than maybe a lot of people predicted.’”

Nelson is on a one-year, $4.25 million contract.

Lee is in the final season of a four-year, $15 million contract, which carries a $3.75 million cap hit. His 2018-19 salary is $5 million.

Lehner is on a one-year, $1.5 million contract.

Nelson, Lee, and Lehner can become unrestricted free agents this summer.

Both Sergei Bobrovsky and Artemi Panarin are on expiring contracts with the Columbus Blue Jackets.


Contract-related info via CapFriendly