Usually when players ask for trades there's a reason. Anything from poor management to playing time. Travis Hamonic's situation is different. The St.Malo, Manitoba native has a unique situation, he says it's a family matter he holds close to his heart.
The 2008 second round pick of the New York Islanders has been a stable and valuable asset for the team over the years. He's been a building block for the defense and headlines a pretty solid group on the back end. He eats a lot of minutes and requesting a trade not only hand cuffs the GM Garth Snow, but in most cases has an impact on the team itself.
The New York Islanders haven't got off to the start that they hoped. Trying to build off of the success they had last year, they currently sit in the first wild card spot in the Eastern Conference with a record of 10-7-3. They have three wins in their last five games but only four of their last ten with two shootout losses.
Unclear of what the family issues that arose are, most can just speculate on a health problem with a family member. The 25-year-old Hamonic requested specifically to be sent to a Western Canadian team. Five teams are said to be interested. The Calgary Flames, Edmonton Oilers, Minnesota Wild, Colorado Avalanche, and the Winnipeg Jets.
The issue with making this request public is that it puts a limit on how much teams are willing to offer in a trade. With Hamonic being a top pair defensemen he could of fetched a pretty penny in return value. The only way that could happen is if desperate teams like the Calgary Flames get into a bidding war and drive the price up, but that's usually not the case, everyone wants a bargain.
Head coach Jack Capuano, however, has said that Hamonic has been nothing but professional and has been focused on each and every game. Hamonic has said that he's still being the best teammate he can be and comes in determined everyday and wants to win regardless of his request.
In 71 games last year, Hamonic scored five goals and 28 points. This year he's logging 23:20 of ice time on average and has three assists with a plus five rating. Those are big minutes and not easily replaced or dispersed. A package deal may be an option, trading Hamonic and a prospect to upgrade or try and get fair value, while still granting his request could make the trade market interested. With some teams looking for a roster shake up, there may still be value to be had.