Islanders (Finally) Announce Signings

After a long wait, the New York Islanders resigned some of their biggest names in hopes of remaining in Stanley Cup contention for years to come.

Beauvillier+shined+for+the+Islanders+during+the+playoffs+and+earned+a+new+contract+because+of+it.+%28Courtesy+of+Twitter%29

Beauvillier shined for the Islanders during the playoffs and earned a new contract because of it. (Courtesy of Twitter)

Chris Hennessy, Staff Writer

The New York Islanders took all the way until September 1 to announce their free agent re-signings. Anthony Beauvillier, Casey Cizikas, Ilya Sorokin and Kyle Palmieri all officially returned to the Island on varying multi-year deals. While it was assumed that these four, along with former Minnesota forward Zach Parise, would be Islanders for the foreseeable future, the official announcements came earlier this week. 

Cizikas’ contract clocks in at a number that had been reported for weeks, $2.5 million per year over the next six seasons. The deal is similar to the Adam Pelech contract, which has their star defenseman locked in for the next eight years, with average annual value (AAV) driven down by the length of the contract. Cizikas said in his media availability he wants to “die an Islander.” He has centered the fourth line throughout his Islander career and will be flanked by Matt Martin and Cal Clutterbuck once again next year. 

Anthony Beauvillier was the other long-time Islander sitting without a contract until Wednesday. He was rumored to be trade bait for St. Louis forward Vladimir Tarasenko despite being a restricted free agent, but general manager Lou Lamoriello was unwilling to part with the youngster. He finally put his money where his mouth is and paid “Beau” $4.1 million for the next three seasons. This is effectively Beauvillier’s second bridge deal he has signed in restricted free agency. His two-year, $4.2 million deal that expired after last season was a heck of a bargain for a high-scoring winger who came up clutch during the playoffs. He will be 27 years old when he hits UFA status in 2024 and will demand a big payday. 

Kyle Palmieri came over from New Jersey in his contract year at the trade deadline and struggled in the regular season. His four-year, $5 million contract was earned during the playoffs, however, especially in the opening round against Pittsburgh. He proved to be the power forward the Isles needed to replace Anders Lee after his ACL injury. Despite Lee’s impending return, Palmieri will remain important to the forward group in the absence of Jordan Eberle. The Isles gained one year of control and $500k in cap space by dumping Eberle and re-signing Palmieri.

Ilya Sorokin was the final domino to fall, who after only one season in the NHL needed a new contract. His fantastic play throughout the regular season and playoffs warranted the 1B spot in the goaltending rotation. His three-year contract worth $12 million total carries Sorokin through age 28. Sorokin has been a distant dream to Islander fans for years and now he has the contract they hope leads him to a Stanley Cup.

The Athletic’s Minnesota Wild reporter, Michael Russo, reported that Parise has agreed to a contract with the Islanders, but nothing official has been announced. Parise will be a great addition to the Isles as a veteran forward on a, theoretically, cheap contract. He is familiar with the area from his extended stint with the Devils, and with Lou Lamoriello as well, and his father, JP, played for the Islanders in the 1970s. 

All in all, the Islanders made out well with the AAVs on Cizikas, Beauvillier and Pelech. The only negative is the lack of a left-handed defenseman to replace Nick Leddy, who was traded to Detroit. Despite that, they have kept the Stanley Cup window open and will hope to win their fifth in team history.