As the days pass and the silence around Nazem Kadri grows stronger, the more the New York Islanders emerge as the winning team for the talented forward.
Until an official report is made, everything you see and hear about Nazem Kadri in a New York Islanders uniform is speculation.
This past weekend, I spoke to someone very close to the Nazem Kadri situation, who shared that Kadri was Long Island bound, with the question just being when.
New York Islanders general manager Lou Lamoriello will need to shed salary, which seems to be the reason the free agent signing has not happened sooner. The amount that needs to be shed is unknown at this time for two reasons.
We have yet to see any information regarding Noah Dobson’s & Alexander Romanov’s extensions, both RFA’s that are believed to have been signed already. We also do not know what Nazem Kadri’s contract with the New York Islanders, if legitimate, is worth.
As of now veteran Josh Bailey and his $5 million cap hit seem like the most critical contract to move, but moving contracts of that magnitude is not an easy task in today’s NHL. Especially when teams that have the cap space are aware of what a team like the New York Islanders are trying to do, which gives a team like the Seattle Kraken, Arizona Coyotes, and Chicago Blackhawks, to name a few, leverage.
Our Adrian Dater, who covers the Colorado Avalanche for Colorado Hockey Now, said that he was confident that Kadri only received a short-term offer from the Avalanche, which might have only been a one-year offer.
“The Avalanche just believe they have too many other big contracts coming in the next couple of years to give Kadri a long-term deal,” Dater said. “So, yeah, I think term was the biggest sticking point between the Avalanche and Kadri.”
Nazem Kadri, a centerman, creates a roster issue for the New York Islanders given their center status: Brock Nelson, Mathew Barzal, Jean-Gabriel Pageau, and Casey Cizikas.
Any of the first three names could be moved to the wing, with the first two in Nelson and Barzal the more likely scenario.
The 31-year-old Nazem Kadri is fresh off a 28-goal, 87-point regular season, a career year, which he capped off with a Stanley Cup victory. He brings a winning pedigree to a New York Islanders team that is in win-now mode.