The New York Islanders placed 14th in the NHL Eastern Conference a season. How will the young, perennially rebuilding franchise approach NHL free agency when it begins on Sunday?
NHL.com reports that the Islanders have more than $25 million in cap space, and says the Islanders' primary need is experience on defense.
There are also expectations that high-scoring right winger PA Parenteau (67 points last season) will leave via free agency. That would mean the Islanders will be looking for scoring, as well.
SB Nation's Lighthouse Hockey looked at some of the forwards the Islanders might target. 'Lighthouse' also tempered the expectations of long-suffering Islanders fans.
There are some big fish out there. Thewill want some big fish. They will call about big fish, probably get rejected (most teams are, but the Islanders consistently are), and try again with some smaller fish.
The true key is to find bigger fish at a better price per ounce. That requires identifying such rare, underpriced but delicious fish or fish with scales to grind.
Here is the complete list of Islanders' free agents [from TSN]
Available UFAs: D Yuri Alexandrov, F Jeremy Colliton, D Mark Eaton, G John Grahame, F Micheal Haley, F Trevor Frischmon, F Tevor Gillies, D Milan Jurcina, F Tyler McNeely, G Al Montoya, F Jay Pandolfo, P-A Parenteau, D Dylan Reese, F Yanmick Riendeau, F Tony Romano
Available RFAs: F Sean Backman, F Justin DiBenedetto, D Mark Katic, G Mikko Koskinen, F Matt Martin, F Tomas Marcinko, Rhett Rakhshani, D Ty Wishart