Well, the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics didn’t quite go the way that Thomas Vanek wanted it to.
Vanek only recorded a single assist during the tournament and was a -4 for Team Austria. This led to Austria being eliminated in the qualification round by underdog Slovenia. The reports of excessive partying the night before that game did not help matters.
The New York Islanders are now without John Tavares for the rest of the season. It is unknown if that will have an impact on whether or not the Islanders will still try to trade Vanek.
Eklund of HockeyBuzz.com notes that Vanek’s performance in the Olympics could have an impact on what the Islanders can get in return for him. Eklund also notes that Vanek plays hardball with his contract negotiations, so if contract offers go down, you can probably guess that Vanek would put up a fight.
Eklund lists the Detroit Red Wings, the MinnesotaWild and the Anaheim Ducks as teams that he knows have interest in Vanek. He also says that the Pittsburgh Penguins and the Nashville Predators are interested in him, but he is not their first choice.
Vanek has already been traded once this season and the Islanders gave up a lot to get him. If the rerurn they get for him is not equal to what they gave up for him, heads will roll on Long Island. Matt Moulson was in the same situation as Vanek, but giving up a first- and second-round pick could come back to bite them.