Garth Snow and the New York Islanders captured some headlines on Thursday by re-signing fourth-line center Casey Cizikas.
Cizikas had a career year with eight goals, 22 assists, 30 points, and 158 hits. He also had career highs in blocks (62), takeaways (58), and plus-minus (4).
Cizikas has been a big part of the Islanders success the past couple of seasons by not only killing penalties, but making his linemates better, helping Matt Martin and Cal Clutterbuck (more Martin) have great seasons.
Cizikas has been part of all three of Isles’ playoff teams the last four seasons. He has been the heart and soul of the Islanders vaunted fourth line.
But with this signing and giving Cizikas about $3.35 million a year it seems that the Islanders will not re-sign NHL hit king Matt Martin, who is an UFA this summer.
The Islanders have plenty to do this off-season with the potential departures of several key players from this past years squad.
#Isles sign Casey Cizikas to a five-year deal worth $16.75 million.
— Arthur Staple (@StapeNewsday) June 2, 2016
If the Islanders can find out a way to free up some more cap space to re-sign Martin and Nielsen that would be ideal but free agency is a long time away.
So for now let’s just watch the Pens and Sharks battle it out for Lord Stanley’s Cup.