from Mike McKenna of The Daily Faceoff,
Congrats to Mathew Barzal on his gleaming 8-year, $73.2 million contract extension with the New York Islanders. But I’m having difficulty believing it will be looked upon favorably when completed in 2031.
To put it bluntly: I think Barzal’s new contract is a bad deal. Not for the player, mind you. Good for Barzal. But I believe the Islanders will feel the sting of that $9.15 million salary cap hit for years to come.
It’s not a question of whether Barzal is a great hockey player. He absolutely is. I think he’s the most electrifying player on the Islanders. But what troubles me is that the Islanders are the definition of a lunch pail team.
New York has a lot of good players that work hard. But there’s simply a dearth of elite talent. Ever since John Tavares left the Islanders in 2018, I don’t think Barzal has played alongside anyone truly capable of unlocking his offensive potential.