Just yesterday the New York Islanders announced that they and prospect Linus Soderstrom had agreed on a three-year entry level contract. Don’t worry this isn’t going to be the three-headed goalie hydra part two.
It’s an easy joke for Islanders fans to make. Linus Soderstrom’s is now the new Jean-Francois Berube after signing a three-year ELC with the team that drafted him 95th overall in 2014.
To be fair we lived through two years of Berube sitting out 87% of the Islanders games in two years. And in the process, his presence, unfortunately for him, caused strife in the goaltending ranks. So seeing the Isles sign a goalie is an immediate warning sign.
Staying In Europe
Just this April Soderstrom signed a single year extension with his SHL club HV71. Keeping him at the Swedish club until the end of the 2017-18 season.
With HV71, Soderstrom beat Henrik Lundqvist‘s regular season SHL goals against average record with 1.34 in 22 games played. He then added a Le Mat Trophy after helping HV71 win the SHL playoffs with a 12-4 record.
Staying another year can only be a good thing for his development and for the Isles long-term goaltending health.
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It’s not like the Islanders were in any rush to sign him. According to the CBA, they hold Soderstrom’s right for four years:
"Article 8.6 (d)(i) Notwithstanding any provision of Sections 8.6(a) or (b) to the contrary, if a Player drafted at age 18 or 19 is drafted from a club outside North America, his drafting Club shall retain the exclusive right of negotiation for his services through and including the fourth June 1 following his selection in the Entry Draft."
That means they had until June 1st, 2018 to give him a contract. They likely wanted to get a jump on things for next season. The season where Jaroslav Halak comes off the Islanders books.
Soderstrom isn’t coming over anytime soon, at least not to take a spot on the Islanders 23-man active roster. So don’t worry, there won’t be a three-headed goalie monster on the Isle roster this season. At least not with Soderstrom in the mix.