Islanders Acquire Bo Horvat from Vancouver in Exchange for Top Prospect & 2023 1st
Going into the 2023 NHL trade deadline on March 3rd, Bo Horvat was set to be a highly sought after commodity for Stanley Cup contenders around the NHL.
But out of the blue and with zero inkling of a trade in the media the New York Islanders pulled off a trade that would see them acquire Horvat from the Vancouver Canucks, sending their captain of four years to New York in a massive swing for the fences type deal for Lou Lamoriello and the Islanders.
Here’s the full break down of the trade:
- New York Islanders receive:
- C Bo Horvat (25% salary retained [$1.375 million])
- Vancouver Canucks receives:
- VAN 2023 1st Round pick (Top 12 Protected)
- #1 Prospect C Aatu Raty
- RW/LW Anthony Beauvillier
Why do this from an Islanders perspective?
The Islanders after 52 games played are currently two points out of the last wild card spot in the Eastern Conference; seven points back of the New York Rangers for 3rd place in the Metro division.
Lou Lamoriello NEEDED to make a big splash at the deadline (or right now) for a goal scorer to see the Islanders have any chance of getting into the postseason.
Giving up a 2023 1st & your #1 prospect for a potential pure rental (Horvat is a UFA at the end of this season) is a huge risk for the organization that has little depth coming up the pipeline to begin with.
But now looking forward to the rest of the season, Horvat projects to fill in as the Islanders #1 in between Josh Bailey & Mathew Barzal, who will move to the wing for the foreseeable future.
A playmaker of the highest caliber in the NHL, Barzal is going to love this trade. For one it takes the pressure of center responsibilities off his hands and two he gets to just focus about being a playmaker for Horvat who already has 30 goals this season and there’s still 30 games left in the season.
In the short-term, this is a brilliant move by Lamoriello, giving his team the needed tools to go succeed down the stretch. Long-term might be a different story.
As mentioned, Horvat is a pending UFA after this season. The Islanders do have $16.275 million in cap space heading into the 2023-2024 season and according to Lamoriello he wants to talk to Horvat’s agent ASAP to discuss a potential extension.
What will it cost to keep Horvat on the island? Eight to nine million per season for seven years? All we do know is that It’s going to cost the Islanders a pretty penny (trade assets + multi-year extension). Or maybe Horvat walks to free agency.
Time will tell, but for right now Lou Lamoriello and the Islanders are prepared for a playoff push.
TRADE GRADE: C+ (re-sign Bo and it turns into a B)
(PHOTO CRED: James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports)
Where do the Canucks go from here?
All of Vancouver should be parading through the streets after receiving a haul from the Islanders.
From the get-go Canucks President of Hockey Ops Jim Rutherford has said that “We’re not looking towards a rebuild, I’d rather call it a retool”.
The Canucks are not trying to “blow their team up” and start from scratch. For Canucks GM Patrick Allvin to be able to pull off a trade like this for a diminishing trade asset by the day is beyond remarkable.
It was obvious to teams around the league that Bo Horvat was going to get moved at the deadline when he rejected the Canucks last contract proposal to keep him in Vancouver the rest of his career.
Getting an Aatu Raty, who you can pair with franchise center Elias Pettersson for the future, is the biggest win for Allvin.
Raty, the 52nd overall pick of the Islanders in 2021, was a highly regarded prospect in his class. Prior to the draft, Raty was a projected top 3 potential pick heading into 2021 but ended up falling to the Islanders in the second round.
A 6’2 187 lbs center out of Finland, Raty tore up the Finnish Liiga in his plus one draft year, putting up 40 points (13 goals, 27 assists) in 41 games with a +26 plus/minus. The Islanders found themselves a steal in the second round.
This year in his first season in North America, Raty, now 20 years old, has been excellent for the Bridgeport Islanders of the American Hockey League. So much so that Raty was called up to the big club and has scored two goals in his first 12 games of NHL action.
It will be a matter of time before Raty is up with the big club in Vancouver playing with J.T Miller if not immediately upon the Canucks return after the NHL All-Star break.
Speaking of Anthony Beauvillier, he’s more of a throw in NHL body in this deal, but Beauvillier is a solid middle six winger.
Coming into the league at age 19, Beauvillier has plenty of NHL experience under his belt and throughout his time on the island has scored over 100 goals in his career. Signed through 2023-2024, Beauvillier will count $4.125 million against the cap for Vancouver.
Not to add that Allvin added a second 1st round pick in one of the deepest drafts the NHL has seen since 2019.
Jim Rutherford will be happy that the Vancouver Canucks have started their “retool” quite nicely!
TRADE GRADE: A+