It was a hefty price to pay, but the New York Islanders managed to clear Andrew Ladd from their payroll on Saturday in a trade that sent the pricey forward and several draft picks to the Arizona Coyotes.
The trade came just before the 3 p.m. roster freeze and was announced just after 4:30 p.m. The deal allowed the Islanders to clear Ladd’s $5.5 million cap hit from their books to create some much-needed space.
In order to do that the Islanders had to send a second-round pick in the 2021 NHL Draft (#60 originally the Colorado Avalanche selection), a second-round pick in the 2022 NHL Draft and a conditional third-round selection in the 2023 NHL Draft. The Islanders do not receive anything in return as part of the deal.
The move was the second trade in less than 24 hours that the Islanders made in order to create more cap space ahead of the expansion draft and free agency. The Islanders have three restricted free agents that need to be re-signed and they would like to find a way to bring back Casey Cizikas, who will be an unrestricted free agent if a new deal isn’t worked out before July 28.
The trade gives the Islanders $12.9 million in projected cap space, according to PuckPedia. That’s before the Islanders even place Johnny Boychuk on LTIR, which would allow them another $6 million in cap space to use.
On Friday night the Islanders traded Nick Leddy to Detroit and cleared all of his $5.5 million cap hit off their books. In that deal, however, the Islanders did get Richard Panik in return as well as a second-round pick in this year’s draft.
It had been rumored that Leddy was being shopped prior to Friday, but the deal to trade Ladd caught many off guard. Ladd’s contract had become an albatross to the Islanders because moving him had become so difficult due to the price tag he came with.
That explained the large price that the Islanders had to pay in order to send him to Arizona.
Andrew Ladd had never matched the expectations of the seven-year, $38.5 million contract he signed with the Islanders in 2016 under then general manager Garth Snow. Ladd was plagued by injury and underperformed in his four years since joining the Islanders.
He appeared in 181 games for New York and recorded 72 points (39 goals, 33 assists) in that time.
One final bit of cap relief could come during Wednesday’s expansion draft depending on who the Islanders leave unprotected and who the Seattle Kraken select.
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