The roster for the NHL’s 32nd team won’t be announced for another couple of hours, but names have been slowly leaking out on who the Seattle Kraken selected. The Hockey News’ Ryan Kennedy reported that Seattle has selected Jordan Eberle from the New York Islanders in the NHL Expansion Draft.
Pierre LeBrun of The Athletic has also confirmed the report. It’s unclear if the Islanders had to work out any side deal to keep Seattle from taking their longest-tenured player, Josh Bailey. Trades between Seattle and other teams won’t be announced until after the NHL Expansion Draft.
The news would indicate that the Islanders had been successful in shifting Seattle away from selecting Bailey. Sources had told NYI Hockey Now on Monday that Seattle had been planning to select Bailey in the expansion draft and that the Islanders were looking to keep that from happening.
One source close to the talks between New York and Seattle indicated that the NHL’s newest team was so high on Bailey that giving him an “A” or even making him captain wouldn’t be out of the question if he had been selected.
Seattle selecting Jordan Eberle means that the Islanders clear another $5.5 million in cap space, which they have roughly $12.9 million in, according to PuckPedia. The Islanders cleared two hefty contracts from their books last weekend by trading Nick Leddy to Detroit on Friday and Andrew Ladd to Arizona on Saturday.
The Islanders will also get to use an additional $6 million when they place Johnny Boychuk on LTIR.
Jordan Eberle has been a streaky player during his tenure with the Islanders. Eberle recorded 16 goals and 33 points in 55 regular-season games for the Islanders last year and had another four goals and 11 assists in 19 playoff games.