The Islanders are near the top of the list of teams interested in trading for Edmonton's RW Jordan Eberle, according to a report from NHL insider Darren Dreger.
There are six or seven teams that have interest in acquiring Eberle, according to Dreger, with the Islanders and the Avalanche seeming to be the frontrunners.
"What's the return? Does Edmonton get a winger back, like a third line player and a smaller deal so they can absorb the cap relief in moving Eberle's contract out?" asked Dreger on TSN1260. "Or can they be patient and finally (Islanders GM) Garth Snow goes, 'OK, I need that player just to keep John Tavares happy and keep him in the mix here long-term, so I'm willing to give up on Travis Hamonic.' I think there's a bit of gamesmanship that is happening in this process."
Eberle played in all 82 games for Edmonton this season, finishing the year with 20 goals and 31 assists.
There's absolutely no way I'd deal Hamonic for Eberle, solely because of what it would do for the Isles on the money side. To me, that would be Garth blinking and losing this game of chicken. If I'm giving up Travis, it's only in a Matt Duchene deal.
The Isles have talent on the wing, especially with the emergence of Josh Ho-Sang. It's replacing Frans Nielsen that should be this team's top priority, and that starts and ends with Duchene.
I know Eberle has been a bit of a white whale for Isles fans since the 2008 Draft, and for good reason. The guy has four consecutive seasons of 20 goals and has scored as many as 36 at the NHL level. But unless he can be had on the cheap, I'd pass -- at least until the Duchene situation is settled.