“We’re excited to add a proven offensive weapon like Jordan to our lineup,” Garth Snow, the Islanders’ president and general manager, said in a statement. “He brings speed and a knack for scoring not only consistently, but scoring big goals, in big games. Jordan brings leadership and experience into our room.”
Eberle and Tavares, 26, have been teammates for Canada at the world championship tournaments as juniors and pros.
“I’ve had previous chemistry with John,” Eberle said in a conference call. “He’s a very intelligent player. Our games suit each other well.”
The Islanders took Strome, 23, with the fifth overall pick in the 2011 draft, but he never performed to the level of his selection. He had 13 goals and 30 points for the Islanders last season, his fourth with the team.
The Islanders were able to accommodate Eberle’s contract in part because of a trade they made with the expansion Vegas Golden Knights on Wednesday. The Islanders sent the injured forward Mikhail Grabovski and his $5 million salary cap hit to Vegas along with their first-round pick in Friday’s draft, defenseman Jake Bischoff and a 2019 second-round pick. The Golden Knights agreed to select the backup goaltender Jean-Francois Berube in the expansion draft. Strome was among forwards the Islanders had left exposed.
Despite a strong second-half run after Doug Weight replaced Jack Capuano as coach in mid-January, the Islanders narrowly missed the playoffs last season for the second time in the last five years. Tavares is entering the final year of his contract with the Islanders, who are seeking to improve their roster to persuade their captain to stay with the franchise.
“John is a generational player,” Eberle said. “Obviously he’s the leader of that team. I’m excited to get an opportunity to hopefully play with him. Hopefully we will bring success to the Islanders.”