Sportsnet’s own Elliotte Friedman reported today that the New York Islanders have been shopping 6’2 the 6’2 defender Travis Hamonic. Hamonic requested a trade for personal reasons, asking to move closer to family located in Manitoba.
Friedman stated that New York Islander’s General Manager Garth Snow “is not interested in a picks or prospects type of return” and “looking for equal-level replacement.”
As a right-handed shot, big-bodied, and big-minutes defender, this means the Islanders would probably be looking at Tyler Myers. Jacob Trouba is likely untouchable for the Jets due to his youth and contract status. Dustin Byfuglien meanwhile loses trade value as a pending Unrestricted Free Agent.
However, if Myers is the bulk of the cost, the Jets should move.
Myers came to the Jets as the part of the return with the Evander Kane and Zach Bogosian trade.
Myers enjoyed a huge increase in teammate quality with the Jets, as well as a nice shooting percentage bump. This caused Myers to score at 51 point pace with the Jets, despite underlying numbers indicating he was more of a 34 point talent.
Myers’ shot metrics indicated that his overall impact was leaving much to be desired. The Jets were consistently out shot with Myers on the ice relative to him sitting on the bench. This suggests that the Jets will likely be outscored with Myers in the long run.
Still, many fans were excited with the tall defender, and the few that knew about his underlying were hopeful a change of scenery could see Myers change for the better.
Thus far, the change hasn’t happened. Myers’ inflated scoring has crashed to a more realistic pace and his impact on Jets shot differentials have been even worse than the year prior.
What about Travis Hamonic?
Numbers courtesy of war-on-ice.com
Hamonic has consistently deployed in a defensive role for the Islanders, typically taking more defensive zone starts than the average defender on the team.
Despite taking tougher assignments at a young age the Islanders have generally been better with Hamonic than without… but not always…
Hamonic has had some ups and downs. If you could summarize them, it would be that his impact has been consistently inconsistent. He has outperformed Tyler Myers, although seems to be below that of Dustin Byfuglien. Goals Above Replacement –a holistic statistic that translates multiple statistics like shots, finishing talent, and penalty differentials into one curency– paints a similar picture.
Despite warts and being an imperfect player, Hamonic is still a solid top-four defender who would be a good compliment to a team carrying right-handed shots like Byfuglien and Trouba.
Myers still holds some value though.
Myers has been the superior goal scorer and shot suppressor, although the former may inflate Myers value and work in the Jets favor. While his overall impact is worse, he is still a regular NHL player.
In addition, Myers’ salary falls well below his Cap Hit for the remaining duration of his contract, while Hamonic’s actually rises above. As budget teams, both the Islanders and the Jets likely prefer Myers contract, even with the one less year of team.
If Kevin Cheveldayoff is to make a bold move, Chevy could do far worse than offering a package centred around Myers to gain an upgrade on the back end with Hamonic.
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