NYI trade Comrie and Campoli to Ottawa

Yesterday the New York Islanders traded center Mike Comrie (pictured left) and defender Chris Campoli to the Ottawa Senators in exchange for forward Dean McAmmond and a very late first-round 2009 draft pick.

This deal is an interesting one because the teams involved are all but out of playoff contention at this point.  Ottawa is 13 points in the standings away from a playoff spot, and the Islanders are a whopping 26 points in the standings away from a playoff berth.   

So what’s the benefit of this deal to both squads?  Well… after signing defender Mark Streit in the off season, the NY Islanders seem to have found their franchise powerplay quarterback of the future.  Campoli had a good year last season but has faded this year for the Islanders, and has become quite the defensive liability.  Both of these things make him expendable at this point for the NYI.

Ottawa, on the other hand, let all their marquis defenders go over the past few years, and now have terrible troubles on both the powerplay, and in transition.  In the 23 year old Campoli, they are giving themselves another option on the back end, that will hopefully pay off in the next couple of years.

Comrie and McAmmond are both unrestricted free agents this summer, and I’d be quite surprised if either of them resigns with their new team, so their impacts will likely be short term.

The most interesting part of this deal to me is the draft pick that the NYI receive for an underachieving defensive prospect and a player that would likely leave town this summer via free agency.  The first round draft pick that the Islanders received is actually the San Jose Sharks first round pick (so the pick will likely be one of the last 3-4 picks in the first round). 

The interesting aspect comes from the fact that the Islanders are the hands down favorite at this point to have the 1st overall draft pick this summer.  Regardless of whether they decide to take center John Tavares, or defender Victor Hedman (pictured right), they will now have another very early pick to address whichever position they don’t address with their first draftee.

The NYI also still have a few other veterans who will be unrestricted free agents this summer, and that playoff contenders will likely be interested in.  So the chances are pretty good that the Islanders could still gain two, or possibly even three more draft picks in the first few rounds.  With solid drafting, this Islanders team could be very, VERY deadly in as soon as two or three years.

The long term outlook in Canada’s capital city is pretty much the same following this trade (or perhaps slightly worse).  Ottawa still has all the same problems that they had before the trade because Campoli is merely a band-aid to their defensive ills… not their solution.  Now, they are also minus a first round draft pick though. 

Only time will tell how good a deal this was for the Senators, but as of right now the Islanders are smelling like roses.

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