2. Barzal Holdout
Barzal, who recorded 60 points (19 G, 41 A) in 68 regular-season games in 2019-20, in addition to putting up 5 goals and 12 assists for 17 points in 22 Stanley Cup Playoffs games, is a RFA and will need to be signed to an extension before he can hit the ice again.
Given that the 2020-21 NHL season is literally a week away, coupled with the fact that there are no preseason games, every on-ice scrimmage will be vital so the Islanders will be keen to get this situation resolved as quickly as possible.
It isn’t exactly straightforward, however, given that Barzal will likely want a short-term deal with anywhere between a $6-7.5 million AAV, while the Isles only have $3,905,833 in cap space to play with.
Now, granted, Islanders General Manager Lou Lamoriello can put defenseman Johnny Boychuk on the LTIR to free up an extra $6 million in cap space, which would certainly help, but goaltender Cory Schneider, defenseman Andy Greene and forwards Matt Martin and RFA Dmytro Timashov all need to be officially signed too.
So, basically, it sounds like there is still a lot of work to be done by the New York Islanders in order to get their most prized asset re-signed and back on the ice, with time of the essence as the new season draws closer and closer.