Panthers left wing Anthony Duclair celebrates his goal with the bench...

Panthers left wing Anthony Duclair celebrates his goal with the bench during the first period of Game 1 of an NHL second-round playoff series against the Lightning on May 17 in Sunrise, Fla. Credit: AP/Reinhold Matay


Got this in the Twitter reply in-basket from a disgruntled Islanders fan:

“Save your ink on NYI trade rumors that won’t happen,” said the tweeter, who went on to express extreme displeasure at president and general manager Lou Lamoriello’s inaction on the trade/free-agency markets as well as the veteran executive’s repeatedly stated faith in his team’s core of players.

Well, sorry to disappoint, but some ink is going to be spilled on that topic with the NHL roster freeze going into effect Monday at 11:59 p.m. and lasting through Dec. 28. Plus the Islanders are playing maddeningly inconsistent hockey, further evidenced by Friday night’s 5-4 loss to the NHL bottom-feeding Coyotes after Tuesday’s entertaining 4-3 shootout loss to the NHL-best Bruins.

Typically, GMs’ phones start ringing with more regularity around this time of the season as the foundations of trades are worked on.

The NHL trade deadline isn’t until March 3, and while we can speculate on what the Islanders may or may not do, the likelihood is that Lamoriello is not going to swing a deal before Monday’s roster freeze.

This much is not speculation: The Islanders have long needed scoring help on the wing among their top six forwards and some of that will be available via trade, albeit at a high cost and potentially as a rental player.

recommended readingIsland Ice Ep. 185: The miracle may be upon us

This much is a little bit of speculation: The Islanders probably also could use some help on the back end with a lefthanded-shooting defenseman with some scoring ability.

The most bandied-about forwards in terms of trade rumors are Chicago’s Patrick Kane and the Canucks’ Bo Horvat, both impending unrestricted free agents. Kane can control where he’s moved and the Canucks’ asking price reportedly is a first-round pick, a young center (Aatu Raty?) and a righthanded-shooting defenseman.

The price also will be high for the Sharks’ Timo Meier, an impending restricted free agent already with a salary cap hit of $6 million.

Lamoriello probably would want to work out a contract extension to give up extensive assets, as he did when acquiring Jean-Gabriel Pageau from the Senators in 2020.

The Coyotes are shopping 24-year-old defenseman Jakob Chychrun, who has two seasons left on his deal at a salary cap-friendly $4.6 million. As a result, the asking price likely will be higher than for Horvat.

Here are some potentially cheaper options:

*  Anthony Duclair: The Panthers wing has one more season to go on a three-year, $9 million deal and his skating ability would pair nicely with Mathew Barzal’s.

*  Shayne Gostisbehere: The offensive-minded Coyotes defenseman, an impending UFA, has had an up-and-down career. Currently, he’s up, and he could help the Islanders’ inconsistent power play.

*  John Klingberg: A bit of ditto on the Ducks defenseman, except that he’s a righty.

*  James van Riemsdyk: The Flyers left wing, another impending UFA, doesn’t score as much these days, but he’d help the Islanders power play.

From the pod

Zach Parise, 38, is on his second one-year, $1.5 million deal with the Islanders after his hometown Minnesota Wild bought out the final four seasons of his 13-year, $98 million deal. Parise discussed rekindling his love of the sport upon joining the Islanders on Episode 150 of Newsday’s Island Ice podcast.

“I know all the circumstances aside, with how the team was doing, I just think last year I really started to love the game again,” Parise said. “To me, that goes a long way. Last year, you really rediscover that: ‘This is why I love playing and coming to the rink. This is the way it’s supposed to be.’ ”

Mornings off

The Islanders did not hold a morning skate before Friday’s loss in Arizona, just as there was no morning skate against Vegas on Saturday on the second night of a back-to-back. There was no morning skate for a road game against the Devils on Dec. 9, also on the front end of a back-to-back. But there was one before Tuesday’s 4-3 shootout loss in Boston, even though the team went through a lively practice the day before.

Coach Lane Lambert obviously has the final say. But captain Anders Lee said players do have a voice in the scheduling decisions.

“It’s a combination,” Lee said. “There’s times when we feel it’s necessary. There’s times where it’s like we could use the morning off to be fresh at night. Sometimes you need the touches in the morning. It’s an ongoing conversation that we always have.”

Logistics can play a part, too. Sometimes it’s just easier to hold the pregame meetings at the team’s hotel.

“We have a lot of games coming up in the next eight days, with some travel involved,” Lambert said. “So it just makes sense.”

All-time list

Josh Bailey’s assist on Friday moved him past Pat LaFontaine for seventh on the Islanders’ all-time scoring list with 567 points. Here’s who the 33-year-old Bailey, whose six-year, $30 million deal runs through next season, might catch next:

1. Bryan Trottier — 1,353

2. Mike Bossy — 1,126

3. Denis Potvin — 1,052

4. Clark Gillies — 663

5. John Tavares — 621

6. Brent Sutter — 610

7. Josh Bailey — 567

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