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REPORT: Islanders, Mathew Barzal Camp Have Been in ‘Constant Communication’



Mathew Barzal

Mathew Barzal remains without a contract as the NHL and NHL Players Association works to hammer out parameters to get a 2021 season going by Jan. 13.

While a deal may not have been reached just yet between Barzal and the New York Islanders, the two sides have had “constant communication.” NHL insider Pierre LeBrun reported during Thursday’s edition of TSN’s Insider Trading that the two sides have been talking and that he was getting a positive vibe out of the negotiations.

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“They’ve talked short term, medium term, long term deals,” LeBrun said. “Again getting a positive vibe out of that negotiation and we’ll see where that goes.”

The highest likelihood is that Mathew Barzal signs a two or three-year extension with the Islanders in the neighborhood of $7 million per year. Officially the Islanders have a mere $3.9 left in salary cap space, but will have Johnny Boychuk’s $6 million cap hit come off the books one way or another before the season starts.

New York also has to decide what they’re going to do with Andrew Ladd. There is a possibility the Islanders would place him on LTIR, which would allow them to utilize his $5.5 million cap hit elsewhere.

Mathew Barzal is the Islanders last major re-signing for the offseason and things between the two sides are likely to progress quickly once a firm start date is set for the 2021 season. The Islanders also reportedly have deals in place with Matt Martin, Andy Green and Cory Schneider.

Several reports indicated that the NHL had hoped to have a deal in place for owners and the players union to vote on by Friday, but at the time of publishing, no such deal had been put in place.

Barzal led the Islanders in points last season with 60 over the course of 68 games and his 19 goals were third on the team. Barzal added another 17 points and five goals in 22 games during the Islanders’ run to the Eastern Conference Finals.