NEW YORK, NY–This afternoon, Islanders’ fans rejoiced as the indefensible occurred. The Philadelphia Flyers have agreed on a deal with Mark Streit a four-year, $21M contract, complete with a no-trade clause. The deal has not been signed will not be signed until the Philadelphia Flyers, currently over the salary cap, attempt to make room for the hefty deal, but again, Streit and the Flyers have agreed to terms.
The news shouldn’t come as any surprise except for Flyers fans. Garth Snow’s proposal – a three-year deal with an AAV cap hit of $4.75M – was declined by declined by Mark Streit, resulting his rights sent to Philadelphia in exchange for a 4th round pick and 24-year-old prospect, Shane Harper. The probability of Shane Harper, a restricted free agent, being retained by the Islanders is slim-to-none, but the acquisition of a 4th-round pick still makes Garth Snow look quite savvy.
On the one hand, Snow gave Streit the best offer available for his team. And after initial reports stated that the Islanders and their former captain disagreed on the length of the offer (Garth put two years on the table, while Streit reportedly wanted three), the Isles GM tacked on a third year with the intention of keeping the agin defender on the Island. But then Streit spurned the Islanders, and Garth Snow received something for nothing in his deal with Philadelphia.
It’s not that I hated Mark Streit on Long Island. I had the utmost respect for the Islanders’ ex-captain, but here’s the thing: Mark Streit, regardless of his offensive numbers, is on the decline.
Honestly, the Mark Streit deal is atrocious from a Philly perspective. If Garth Snow loved Mark Streit as much as Paul Holmgren apparently does, the Islanders would find themselves in a world of trouble. Not only would the fans be at his throat, yet again, but also a four-year deal would basically guarantee the Islanders trouble with the salary cap in the near future. KEY POINT and kudos to Snow for thinking ahead.
Ha. You laugh now. What happens when the Islanders decide they want to sign Matt Donovan, Andrey Pedan, Scott Mayfield, and Griffin Reinhart to long-term deals? Would you be happy if the Islanders, who have done a very good job locking up their players on affordable long-term deals (see Kyle Okposo and Michael Grabner), had to let one Brock Nelson, or Ryan Strome, or Nino Niederreiter walk, all because an elder Mark Streit was counting $5.25M against the salary cap in 2016?
At 35-years-old, Mark Streit would do no favors, a la Chris Drury several years back for the Rangers. No. At 35-years old, even if he retires early, Mark Streit would continue to count against the salary cap. Ouch. Good for Mark Streit, and not so good for the Philadelphia Flyers, who have tumbled around cap hell for years.
It’s not that I hated Mark Streit on Long Island. I had the utmost respect for the Islanders’ ex-captain, but here’s the thing: Mark Streit, regardless of his offensive numbers, is on the decline. He is no longer a top-four defenseman (at least not in his own zone), yet he will be paid as if he’s a top-two, stunting his own team’s ability to make the transactions needed to take the next step.
We know what Mark Streit has to offer. Sure, he may score a few goals on the Islanders over the next four years. He may even push the Flyers over the Islanders on a few occasions. None of this is going to make me think twice about letting Streit go, especially after what might ensue….FOUR YEARS OF STREIT AND BRUNO!
After all is said and done, though, I am happy for Mark Streit. That is the last you will ever hear that from me. He’s a Flyer now, and the Islanders are better off.