The first shoe dropped in Buffalo as Thomas Vanek was sent to the NY Islanders for Matt Moulson, a first-round pick in 2014 and a second-round pick in 2015.
Buffalo has been dreadful to start the season at 2-10-1 and something had to be done. This wasn’t the move I was thinking they’d do. Vanek is likely to be put on a line with John Tavares and make the Isles power play that much better.
Moulson didn’t do much on Long Island without Tavares and now he has to stand on his own two feet. His teammates have less talent in Buffalo than they did in the Big Apple and Moulson will have a chance to be that spotlight guy in Buffalo.
The Islanders also threw in the draft picks but we won’t speculate on them.
Moulson is expected to make his debut tonight for Buffalo.
I’m not big on what Moulson can do until he proves himself away from Tavares. This will be the first time in four years he won’t hit 30 goals in a season because of the change of scenery.
Vanek had little to work with and should have more opportunities with the Isles.
Since both players have expiring contracts, they may be nothing more than long-term rentals for these teams. The value and impact of the trade may not be known for months but right now I give the edge to the Isles. Vanek and Tavares sounds like a great line and whoever winds up on the right side of that is going to be in for an uptick in production.