It has been a long summer on Long Island. New York Islanders fans have patiently been waiting for the team to make any sort of signings. The lone signing they made this offseason was the eight-year extension given to Adam Pelech. Isles GM Lou Lamoriello waited until September 1st to drop the news of four signings. Ilya Sorokin and Anthony Beauvillier were both RFA’s while Kyle Palmieri and Casey Cizikas were UFA’s. All four guys were signed to multi-year deals to stay on Long Island.
So the #Isles summer of Lou culminates with four significant signings announced Sept. 1:
Kyle Palmieri — 4x$5M AAV
Anthony Beauvillier — 3x$4.15M AAV
Ilya Sorokin — 3x$4M AAV
Casey Cizikas — 6x$2.5M AAV
— Chris Johnston (@reporterchris) September 1, 2021
Palmieri was traded to the Isles along with Travis Zajac last season. He played 17 games with them and scored 2 goals and tallied 2 assists. Palmieri signed a four-year deal with the Islanders which vies him an AAV of $5 million. He was a 5x 20 goal scorer while with the New Jersey Devils. He is also a huge weapon on the powerplay. He had a bit of a down year last year, especially with his shot. He put up an 8.7% shooting percentage between both New Jersey and New York which is almost 4% lower than his career average of 12.5%. He will be turning 31 in the middle of this upcoming season and will be a veteran presence for the Isles locker room.
Ilya Sorokin made his NHL debut last season. He appeared in 22 games and came away with 13 wins. Of goalies that have played at least 17 or more games last season, Sorokin finished in the top in both GAA and SV%. He also managed to register 3 shutouts. He signed a three-year deal with a $4 million AAV. As far as the Isles netminder situation stands, Sorokin will still play 2nd fiddle to Semyon Varlamov for the next two years until Varlamov’s contract expires, or when Sorokin outplays Varlamov, but that probably won’t happen quite yet.
Of these four guys, Beauvillier is the guy that I like the most. He has played five seasons so far with the Islanders. He has netted at least 10 goals in four of the five seasons he has played and is a staple in the Isles top-six forward group. He is great both offensively and defensively. His play earned him a three-year extension with a $4.15 million AAV. He just turned 24 so he has plenty of great years ahead of him on the island.
The last guy on this list is Casey Cizikas. He has spent 10 years with the Islanders and has become one of the best shutdown centers in the game. He plays bottom-six minutes, but they are hard-nosed minutes nonetheless. In the scoring department, he has scored 81 goals and 104 assists in 590 career games. Of all the guys signed today by the Isles, Cizikas got the longest term. He signed a six-year deal with a $2.5 million AAV. If he plays at the same level he has been for the duration of this deal then it will have been well worth it for both sides.
The Isles are a great team. They have made the Eastern Conference Finals the last two years and the only team that has been able to stop them is the Tampa Bay Lightning. They didn’t make a “big” splash in free agency, but at the same time, they didn’t really lose anyone. This team has high hopes and they also have high expectations. I am so confident in this team that I have them as one of my best bets to win the Stanley Cup. The Metro will be a fun division to follow this year. The Islanders should be the ones to finish out on top.
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